Phosphorus is a crucial element in biochemistry, especially the P−O bond, which is key for the formation of the backbone of the deoxyribonucleic acid. So far, PO has only been detected towards the envelope of evolved stars, and never towards star-forming regions. We report the first detection of PO towards two massive star-forming regions, W51 e1/e2 and W3(OH), using data from the IRAM 30m telescope. PN has also been detected towards the two regions. The abundance ratio PO/PN is 1.8 and 3 for W51 and W3(OH), …
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