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Dust and Ice in the Interstellar Medium

  • Guillermo M. Muñoz Caro
Chapter
Part of the Astrophysics and Space Science Library book series (ASSL, volume 451)

Abstract

This chapter presents an introduction to the bare dust grains and grains covered by ice mantles in diffuse and dense interstellar clouds. It follows the lifecycle of dust from its formation in evolved stellar atmospheres to its incorporation in bodies of the solar system. Dust particles play an important role in the physics and chemistry of numerous space environments. Regarding the dust composition, two different populations are commonly observed: silicate and carbonaceous dust. The energetic processing of ice mantles by UV, X-rays, or cosmic rays, followed by heating leads to the formation of complex organic molecules; some of them are of prebiotic interest. Delivery of this organic fraction to the primitive Earth via comets and asteroids might have contributed to the origin of life.

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centro de Astrobiología, INTA-CSICTorrejón de Ardoz, MadridSpain

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