The Prebiotic Potential and Molecular Diversity of Space Environments: Past Projects and Future Possibilities with SOFIA

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Duncan Mifsud & Sergio Ioppolo
University of Kent & Queen Mary University of London
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Understanding the chemical pathways to the formation of molecules in various astrophysical settings is at the heart of astrochemical research. In particular, the icy mantles formed on interstellar dust grains and their processing by galactic cosmic rays or high-energy ultraviolet photons are thought to be the origin of many observed molecules, including those that are prebiotic. As interstellar regions evolve into stellar and planetary systems, these molecules may be seeded to planets and moons and contribute to important (geo)chemical processes and the possible emergence of life.

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