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ASTROCHEMISTRY

Organohalogens in space

The first extraterrestrial detections of a member of the organohalogen family of molecules have been made towards comet Churyumov–Gerasimenko and low-mass protostar IRAS 16293-2422. Chloromethane, considered to be a biomarker, can form efficiently abiotically.

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Fig. 1: Extraterrestrial detection of chloromethane.

NASA/JPL-Caltech/WISE Team (top image); European Space Agency/Rosetta/Navcam/Science Photo Library (bottom image).

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Correspondence to Marcelino Agúndez.

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Agúndez, M. Organohalogens in space. Nat Astron 1, 655–656 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41550-017-0265-3

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