Astrochemists have discovered another organic chemical in the same region of space
where other researchers had identified the first extraterrestrial sugar (SN:
6/24/00, p. 405). On Earth, the alcohol is used to make packaging polymers.
The finding of space-based molecules such as sugar and the newly identified vinyl
alcohol could help researchers determine how complex molecules first formed in the
cosmos, says Barry Turner of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory in
Charlottesville, Va. The findings will appear in a forthcoming issue of
Astrophysical Journal Letters.
Turner and A.J. Apponi of the University of Arizona's Steward Observatory in
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