Jul 20, 2023

JWST Just Detected Carbon in The Cosmic Dawn… Before We Thought Carbon Was Possible

Posted by in categories: chemistry, cosmology

EMBARGO Wednesday 19 July 1,600 BST | 1,500 GMT | Thursday 20 July 100 AEST

Back when the Universe was still just a wee baby Universe, there wasn’t a lot going on chemically. There was hydrogen, with some helium, and a few traces of other things. Heavier elements didn’t arrive until stars had formed, lived, and died.

Imagine, therefore, the consternation of scientists when, using the James Webb Space Telescope to peer back into the distant reaches of the Universe, they discovered significant amounts of carbon dust, less than a billion years after the Big Bang.

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