posted on Nov, 22 2013 @ 12:19 PM
Sublimation in space is fairly common, it is a extremely high vacuum, almost a perfect vacuum by the standards reached on Earth. In vacuum, chemicals
and things behave quite differently to bulk like on Earth. Firstly comets are thought to originate from the oort cloud, which is almost a chemical
freeze out zone so to speak, were basically all but helium and hydrogen would effectively be solid.
The sun is a second or third generation star, which means that the cloud that it formed from would have contained alot of heavier elements/metals
(anything heavier than helium is a metal to astronomers) So the prevalence of carbon and carbon2 is not all that hard to understand in origin. Dust
clouds, even the dense ones, are mostly vacuum of the order of 20 or so atoms per cubic meter. It is not like you might imagine in Sci-fi where clouds
are big thick smoggy things.
Anyway, so it is not really difficult to paint a picture that collisions between individual atoms such that they can form molecules is not all that
common and something light like carbon might only really form Carbon2 rather than Carbon3...
the other influence is the sun, and the UV radiation. UV baking something causes lots of interesting effects, also high energy electron radiation from
solar wind also has a nice effect of dissociating molecules... i know this because iv done extensive Residual gas analysis and fracture/cracking is a
big effect you have to deal with. So there being alot of molecules like Carbon 2 in the mass ejections from a comet are not one bit a shock to me.
Anything on the object that escapes the surface would be baked in UV and to a lesser extent Electrons, in increasing intensity as you approach the
sun, finding alot of trace singular elements is actually very likely.