Comet inspires chemistry for making breathable oxygen on Mars

Science fiction stories are chock full of terraforming schemes and oxygen generators for a very good reason—we humans need molecular oxygen (O2) to breathe, and space is essentially devoid of it. Even on other planets with ...

Chemical engineers explain oxygen mystery on comets

A Caltech chemical engineer who normally develops new ways to fabricate microprocessors in computers has figured out how to explain a nagging mystery in space—why comets expel oxygen gas, the same gas we humans breathe.

Some catalysts contribute their own oxygen for reactions

Chemical reactions that release oxygen in the presence of a catalyst, known as oxygen-evolution reactions, are a crucial part of chemical energy storage processes, including water splitting, electrochemical carbon dioxide ...

Rosetta finds molecular oxygen on comet 67P (Update)

Stunned scientists announced Wednesday the unexpected discovery of large quantities of oxygen on a comet which streaked past the Sun in August with a European spacecraft in tow.

Photosynthesis has unique isotopic signature

Photosynthesis leaves behind a unique calling card, a chemical signature that is spelled out with stable oxygen isotopes, according to a new study in Science. The findings suggest that similar isotopic signatures could exist ...

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