Publication Details

Field Value
Title: Isotopic compositions of cometary matter returned by STARDUST
Authors: K.D. McKeegan et al.
Publication: Science, v. 314, p. 1724‐1728.
Publish Date: Dec 2006
DOI: 10.1126/science.1135992
PDF: pdf
BibTEX Citation: McKeegan:2006.bib


Hydrogen, carbon, nitrogen, and oxygen isotopic compositions are heterogeneous among comet 81P/Wild 2 particle fragments; however, extreme isotopic anomalies are rare, indicating that the comet is not a pristine aggregate of presolar materials. Nonterrestrial nitrogen and neon isotope ratios suggest that indigenous organic matter and highly volatile materials were successfully collected. Except for a single 17O−enriched circumstellar stardust grain, silicate and oxide minerals have oxygen isotopic compositions consistent with solar system origin. One refractory grain is 16O‐enriched, like refractory inclusions in meteorites, suggesting that Wild 2 contains material formed at high temperature in the inner solar system and transported to the Kuiper belt before comet accretion.