LOS ANGELES (AP) — Scientists say the space outside our solar system is different than within the confines of the sun’s neighborhood.
NASA’s announcement Tuesday came from observations by an Earth-orbiting spacecraft studying the edge of the solar system. The probe is the first to directly measure interstellar matter streaming into the solar system.
Among the new findings: There are more oxygen atoms within our solar system than in the immediate neighborhood outside. Scientists say it’s possible the life-supporting element could be locked up in dust or ice.
The spacecraft called Interstellar Boundary Explorer was launched in 2008 and is circling 200,000 miles above Earth.