The Philae Lander had sent back evidence of carbon and hydrogen, which could show where life on Earth had originated.
Organic molecules are essential for life. Finding them on a comet may reveal some answers about humanity, and earth life, came from. Scientists are yet to reveal the specific molecules found on Comet 67/P Churyunov-Gersimenko.
Many scientists believe that life on Earth did not grow from the planet itself, but had been carried through an asteroid or comet that hit it during its younger years.
The DLR German Aerospace Centre had confirmed the lander had found organic molecules. The developer of the Philae Lander’s Cosac instrument, they determined their device had “sniffed” the atmosphere and detected the first organic molecules upon landing.
The instrument shortly picked up the compounds from the comet’s thin atmosphere before the lander hibernated to preserve its limited power supplies.
Meanwhile, the lander’s attempt to analyse soil through drilling had not been successful. It had worked on several other experiments for 60 hours before it entered hibernation.
Open University Professor and Scientist Professor John Zarnecki said that the discovery was greatly fascinating. He said “There has long been indirect evidence of organic molecules on comets as carbon, hydrogen and oxygen atoms have been found in comet dust, It has not been possible to see if these are forming complex compounds before and if this is what has been found then it is a tremendous discovery.”