JAXA Hayabusa2 Mission Asteroid 162173 Ryugu Sample Amino Acids
JAXA’s Hayabusa2 mission has returned to Earth with samples from asteroid 162173 Ryugu and a total of 23 types of amino acids, or the building blocks of life, were discovered. Researchers hope their findings could shed more light on how our solar system began, with some of the samples thought to contain compounds from some 3-million years after the solar system was created 4.6-billion years ago.



It may be a while until all of the findings are confirmed, as the space probe only managed to retrieve 5.4 grams of asteroid material to Earth, but on the bright side, amino acids were also discovered on the Moon. These samples from Ryugu are expected to provide a better baseline for materials found in the rest of our solar system. Asteroid Psyche 16 may not contain the building blocks of life, but it is expected to be worth over a quadrillion.

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The chemical composition of the asteroid is similar to that of CI chondrites. It has also been confirmed that the sample contains material collected not only from the surface of Ryugu, but also from the interior material that was ejected as a result of the formation of the artificial crater,” said JAXA.