What can comets reveal about the origin of the Universe?

15 January 2006

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Question

I want to whether the analysis of the Stardust comet dust can tell us about the origins of the universe and the theory of the Big Bang.

Answer

The answer is probably no, because the Big Bang was 14.9 billion years ago, and scientists mainly study that by looking at left over radio waves. In contrast, the Stardust comet mission is going to tell us about the formation of the solar system, which is about 4 and a half thousand million years ago. So it probably won't tell us anything about things at the beginning of the universe.

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