Meteorite found on UK trail provides clue as to how water got to Earth

A meteorite that hit a gorge in the UK provides strong evidence about the origin of life on Earth. The space rock contains water very similar to the water on our planet.

Water was crucial to the emergence of life on Earth. But scientists still don’t know how this water got here. The popular theory is that asteroids outside our solar system took water with them. The meteorite that hit the English village of Winchcombe in February 2021 supports this theory.

When an asteroid or meteorite hits the Earth, we call it a meteorite. The Winchcombe specimen is one of the purest meteorites ever discovered, says British Natural History Museum researcher Ashley King.

Investigators arrived shortly after the crash. As a result, the stone was barely weathered. For example, rain may have obscured meteorite research.

In the laboratory, the meteorite was found to be at least 4.6 billion years old. The effect was also reflected in numerous surveillance camera footage of the residential area. This allowed the researchers to calculate the source of the space rock. Probably from the asteroid belt between Jupiter and Mars. It took the meteorite nearly 300,000 years to get here.

According to King, the composition of the water in the found meteorite matches the water in our oceans. “This could mean that asteroids were the main source of water,” he says. The research was published in the scientific journal Scientists advance.

Earl Warner

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