Phosphorus and Sulfur Cosmochemistry: Implications for the Origins of Life

Hdl Handle:
http://hdl.handle.net/10150/194288
Title:
Phosphorus and Sulfur Cosmochemistry: Implications for the Origins of Life
Author:
Pasek, Matthew Adam
Issue Date:
2006
Publisher:
The University of Arizona.
Rights:
Copyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
Abstract:
Phosphorus is a key element for life. This work reviews the role of phosphorus in life. Theories on the origin of life are confounded by a lack of reactive phosphorus, and attempts to overcome the dearth of reactive phosphorus must employ unrealistic phosphorus compounds, energetic organic compounds, or unusual physical conditions.Meteoritic schreibersite provided an abundant source of reactive phosphorus for the early Earth. Water corrodes schreibersite to form a mixed valence series of phosphorus compounds. Schreibersite corrosion was studied by a variety of techniques, including NMR, MS, XRD, and EPR. Reduced phosphorus in schreibersite corrodes through release of phosphite radicals which react with other radicals to form the phosphorus compounds observed. These radicals are also capable of phosphorylating simple organic compounds to form P-C and P-O-C linkages.The meteoritic mass flux was calculated using the mass frequency distribution of several meteorite collections. Much of the meteoritic mass that falls to the Earth is composed of metallic material which supplies abundant reactive phosphorus. Meteorites are a comparatively poorer source of carbon. Craters concentrate both reduced phosphorus and organic compounds through geomorphologic processes.Phosphorus and sulfur biochemistry are intricately linked in metabolism. The cosmochemistry of sulfur was studied in depth using changing C/O ratios, sulfide formation kinetics, and gas diffusion. The results have implications for meteorites, studies of Jupiter, and of protoplanetary disks.
Type:
text; Electronic Dissertation
Keywords:
Phosphorus; Origins of Life; Schreibersite; corrosion; meteorite fluxes; sulfur
Degree Name:
PhD
Degree Level:
doctoral
Degree Program:
Planetary Sciences; Graduate College
Degree Grantor:
University of Arizona
Advisor:
Lauretta, Dante S.
Committee Chair:
Lauretta, Dante S.

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.language.isoENen_US
dc.titlePhosphorus and Sulfur Cosmochemistry: Implications for the Origins of Lifeen_US
dc.creatorPasek, Matthew Adamen_US
dc.contributor.authorPasek, Matthew Adamen_US
dc.date.issued2006en_US
dc.publisherThe University of Arizona.en_US
dc.rightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.en_US
dc.description.abstractPhosphorus is a key element for life. This work reviews the role of phosphorus in life. Theories on the origin of life are confounded by a lack of reactive phosphorus, and attempts to overcome the dearth of reactive phosphorus must employ unrealistic phosphorus compounds, energetic organic compounds, or unusual physical conditions.Meteoritic schreibersite provided an abundant source of reactive phosphorus for the early Earth. Water corrodes schreibersite to form a mixed valence series of phosphorus compounds. Schreibersite corrosion was studied by a variety of techniques, including NMR, MS, XRD, and EPR. Reduced phosphorus in schreibersite corrodes through release of phosphite radicals which react with other radicals to form the phosphorus compounds observed. These radicals are also capable of phosphorylating simple organic compounds to form P-C and P-O-C linkages.The meteoritic mass flux was calculated using the mass frequency distribution of several meteorite collections. Much of the meteoritic mass that falls to the Earth is composed of metallic material which supplies abundant reactive phosphorus. Meteorites are a comparatively poorer source of carbon. Craters concentrate both reduced phosphorus and organic compounds through geomorphologic processes.Phosphorus and sulfur biochemistry are intricately linked in metabolism. The cosmochemistry of sulfur was studied in depth using changing C/O ratios, sulfide formation kinetics, and gas diffusion. The results have implications for meteorites, studies of Jupiter, and of protoplanetary disks.en_US
dc.typetexten_US
dc.typeElectronic Dissertationen_US
dc.subjectPhosphorusen_US
dc.subjectOrigins of Lifeen_US
dc.subjectSchreibersiteen_US
dc.subjectcorrosionen_US
dc.subjectmeteorite fluxesen_US
dc.subjectsulfuren_US
thesis.degree.namePhDen_US
thesis.degree.leveldoctoralen_US
thesis.degree.disciplinePlanetary Sciencesen_US
thesis.degree.disciplineGraduate Collegeen_US
thesis.degree.grantorUniversity of Arizonaen_US
dc.contributor.advisorLauretta, Dante S.en_US
dc.contributor.chairLauretta, Dante S.en_US
dc.contributor.committeememberSwindle, Timothyen_US
dc.contributor.committeememberPavlov, Alexanderen_US
dc.contributor.committeememberWoolf, Nevilleen_US
dc.contributor.committeememberBoynton, Williamen_US
dc.identifier.proquest1557en_US
dc.identifier.oclc137356460en_US
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