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Extra-terrestrial water was discovered in a meteorite for the first time ever

Updated Sep 21st, 2022 8:54AM EDT
Image: Trustees of the Natural History Museum

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Scientists have discovered extra-terrestrial water in a meteorite for the first time. The meteorite was discovered after it crashed into a driveway in the Gloucestershire town of Winchcombe last February. Now, scientists believe the space water in the meteorite could hold more clues to finding out the origin of water on Earth and how it came to be.

Meteorite could hold clues to the origin of water on Earth

Scientists say that around 12 percent of the sample was made up of water. As such, it could provide a lot of insight into the origin of water on Earth. That’s because it is the least contaminated specimen to be collected thus far, according to reports from Sky News. The sample, they say, was collected within 12 hours of striking the Earth. As such, it wasn’t contaminated by water and materials on Earth.

This is huge news for scientists, as it means a mostly uncontaminated look at water beyond our own planet. And, because scientists are always trying to find out how the oceans on Earth formed, they’re hopeful it could provide some answers.

origin of water and oceans on Earth could be tied to meteorites
Earth’s oceans and lakes may have formed partly due to comets and meteorites. Image source: MARIMA/Adobe

There has always been a lot of debate around the origin of water on Earth. Asteroids like Bennu have provided some insight into how life formed on our planet, but finding out the true origin of water has always been tough. A lot of the debate has centered around whether asteroids or comets were the main sources of the first water to form on Earth.

While this particular sample doesn’t give a definitive answer, it does provide new insight into the concentration amounts of water that may have traveled to the surface on meteorites. And, because the composition is very similar to water on Earth, some scientists say that comets and meteorites likely played a pivotal role in the origin of water on Earth.

Finding extra-terrestrial water on this meteorite is a big deal. But it isn’t enough to blow the lid off the entire thing. Hopefully, future samples can provide even more insight, and scientists can truly determine the origin of water on Earth.

Josh Hawkins has been writing for over a decade, covering science, gaming, and tech culture. He also is a top-rated product reviewer with experience in extensively researched product comparisons, headphones, and gaming devices.

Whenever he isn’t busy writing about tech or gadgets, he can usually be found enjoying a new world in a video game, or tinkering with something on his computer.