Earth’s water probably didn’t come from comets, Rosetta scientists say
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The researchers behind Rosetta, the ESA spacecraft currently orbiting the Churyumov-Gerasimenko comet, think they can help answer one of the fundamental questions about how water came to Earth: most likely not from comets. They published their findings today in Science.
Around 4 billion years ago, meteorites repeatedly slammed into the young Earth in a violent event called the Late Heavy Bombardment. This happened right after our planets crust had started to cool, so instead of burning up and disintegrating into the molten surface of an older Earth, these chunks of comets and asteroids made landfall. In the process they likely brought the first organic molecules to Earth and maybe even enough water to form oceans, setting the scene for…