Paleontological Journal

, Volume 52, Issue 13, pp 1647–1650 | Cite as

Diatoms in the Orgueil Meteorite

  • R. B. Hoover
  • A. Yu. Rozanov
  • E. A. Krasavin
  • A. K. RyuminEmail author
  • M. I. KapralovEmail author


We report the discovery of frustules of pennate diatoms embedded in a freshly fractured interior surface of the Orgueil CI1 carbonaceous meteorite. Images and element composition by Energy Dispersive X-ray Spectroscopy were obtained with the TESCAN VEGA 3 Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) in the Astrobiology Sector of the Laboratory of Radiation Biology of the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research in Dubna, Russia. The distribution of chemical elements as shown by Energy Dispersive X-Ray Spectroscopy (EDS) and 2-D element maps show no detectable nitrogen. Hence the diatoms are interpreted as indigenous to the Orgueil meteorite and therefore have direct implications to the existence of extraterrestrial life; and the hypothesis of Panspermia.


diatoms Orgueil meteorite 



We are grateful to the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research for support for this research. We thank Dr. Claude Perron and Dr. Martine-Rossignol Strick (Paris) and Prof. Paul Sipiera (Chicago) for providing samples of the Orgueil meteorite used in this study.

The work was performed according to the Program of the Presidium of the Russian Academy of Sciences no. 17 “The evolution of the organic world: The role and influence of planetary processes” (Subprogram 1 “Development of life and biospheric processes”), with the support of the Russian Foundation for Basic Research, project no. 17-04-00324.


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Copyright information

© Pleiades Publishing, Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Astrobiology Laboratory, Athens State UniversityAthensUSA
  2. 2.Buckingham Centre for Astrobiology, University of BuckinghamBuckinghamUK
  3. 3.Borissiak Paleontological Institute, Russian Academy of SciencesMoscowRussia
  4. 4.Astrobiology Sector, Laboratory of Radiation Biology, JINRDubnaRussia
  5. 5.Dubna State UniversityDubnaRussia

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