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June 13 2018 / 16:15 PM

Category:
Natural Sciences

Lecturer:
Dr. Dmitry Semenov, Planet and Star Formation Department, Max Planck Institute for Astronomy, Heidelberg & Department of Chemistry, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich, Munich, Germany

Place:
Haus der Astronomie, Auditorium, Königstuhl 17

Host:
Heidelberg Initiative for the Origins of Life (HIFOL)

Description:
The origin of life on Earth can be traced back to at least 3.5 billion years ago and possibly as early as 3.6–4.0 billion years ago, after geological crust started to solidify. The early onset of abiogenesis implies that the key building blocks for life, water and various organic compounds have been available on the Earth surface already back than. It is commonly believed nowadays that Earth has formed in the inner, warm part of the solar nebula from "dry" planetesimals lacking volatiles, and got a substantial part (if not all) of the surface water and carbon via exogenous delivery by comets and asteroids. In my presentation, I will talk about our current understanding of the cosmic life-cycle of organic matter, both from observational and theoretical points of view. I will guide you through a long and perplex chemical journey in space, starting from dense molecular clouds to protostellar envelopes and to protoplanetary disks and, finally, comets and asteroids.

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