Astrochemistry and Origins

Interstellar Matter and Cosmology

Stellar and Solar Physics

Solar and Planetary Systems

Latest News

3 years 5 months ago

The 2014 edition of the Summer Advanced Undergraduate Student Programme “Rencontres de physique de l’infiniment grand à l’infiniment petit” will be held from the 15 to the 25 July 2014 in Orsay, Palaiseau, Paris and Saclay. This year, we will welcome 26 students from all over France, and their promotion will be named after Frédéric and Irène Joliot-Curie.

3 years 6 months ago

Living organisms use amino acids exclusively in their L enantiomeric form, a fact known as homochirality. However, the abiotic synthesis of these molecules do produce racemic mixtures (L=D) and the origin of the asymmetry remains hypothetical. The “Astrochimie et Origines” team at IAS operates an experiment dedicated to the photochemistry of ices as templates of interstellar/pre-cometary ices. These ices may be irradiated by an asymmetric light, a circularly polarized, which promotes enantioselectivity in chiral molecules. New results show that enantioselectivity obtained on five different amino acids allows confirming previous results and may help to further precise the astrophysical scenario that may be responsible for the origin of the biomolecular asymmetry at the surface of the primitive Earth.

3 years 7 months ago

After a ten-year-long interplanetary journey, Rosetta finally approaches its final destination, the nucleus of the comet Churyumov-Gerasimenko, on which the Philae module will land in November. The CIVA imaging system, designed to obtain a stereoscopic panoramic view of the surface of the comet after the landing of Philae, has just been turned on successfully, after years of hibernation, at a distance of more than 600 million km from the Sun.

 

 

3 years 9 months ago

From source to sink: Meteorites from Mars have been known since the 1970’s, but researchers in Oslo, In Lyon, and at IAS have for the first time been able to identify the source crater for shergottites, the largest group of martian meteorites. The source region on Mars was probably impacted about 3 million years ago by a medium-size body, and the meteorites ended their space journey at the Earth’s surface a few thousand years ago.

 

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