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Who we are

Why ASM?



MIT All Small Molecules project

All Small Molecules (ASM) is a library of molecules designed as a guide for research on biosignatures gases in the search for life on another planets.

In its current form the list contains c.a 16000 molecules, constructed by a combinatorial approach and an intense literature search.

Only a few hundred organisms have been studied for their production of volatiles compounds, out of the estimated millions inhabiting the planet. This suggests that many more chemicals remain to be discovered as gases produced by life on Earth, and that life on othe worlds could produce a collection of chemicals quite different from our own biosphere.

What could those chemicals be? The All Small Molecules project is the first step is defining what they could be, and how we might detect them.

Our initial description of how we generated the database is in this paper.


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