Planetary Genealogy

The detection of exoplanets and accretion disks around newborn stars has spawned new ideas and models of how our Solar System formed and evolved. Meteorites as probes of geologic deep time can provide ground truth to these models. In particular, stable isotope anomalies in meteorites have recently emerged as key tracers of material flow in the early Solar System, allowing cosmochemists to establish a “planetary isotopic genealogy”. Although not complete, this concept has substantially advanced our understanding of Solar System evolution, from the collapse of the Sun’s parental molecular cloud to the accretion of the planets.

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