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Missions, Hardware, Software, & Sensors: December 2020


Many biologically produced chiral molecules such as amino acids and sugars show a preference for left or right handedness (homochirality). Light reflected by biological materials such as algae and leaves therefore exhibits a small amount of circular polarization that strongly depends on wavelength.

A device developed by scientists at the CY Cergy Paris University and Paris Observatory promises insight into how the building blocks of life form in outer space.