Krypton isotopes and noble gas abundances in the coma of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko

Abstract : The ROSINA mass spectrometer DFMS on board ESA's Rosetta spacecraft detected the major isotopes of the noble gases argon, krypton, and xenon in the coma of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. Earlier, it has been shown that xenon exhibits an isotopic composition distinct from anywhere else in the solar system. However, argon isotopes, within error, were shown to be consistent with solar isotope abundances. This discrepancy suggested an additional exotic component of xenon in comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. Here we show that also krypton exhibits an isotopic composition close to solar. Furthermore, we found a depletion compared to solar of argon with respect to krypton and of krypton with respect to xenon, which is a necessity to postulate an addition of exotic xenon in the comet.
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Martin Rubin, Kathrin Altwegg, Hans Balsiger, Akiva Bar-Nun, Jean-Jacques Berthelier, et al.. Krypton isotopes and noble gas abundances in the coma of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. Science Advances , American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), 2018, 4 (7), pp.eaar6297. ⟨10.1126/sciadv.aar6297⟩. ⟨insu-01877545⟩

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