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Organic Molecules


Organic molecules are necessary for life. The cycling of atoms between inorganic and organic forms often depends on living things. For example, nitrogen-fixing bacteria convert $N_2$ into $NH_3$ and photosynthetic organisms convert $CO_2$ into carbohydrates. However, organic molecules must have formed prior to the existence of life.

Which of the following could demonstrate that organic molecules could be synthesized on Earth in the absence of life?


Allow a beaker of water to sit exposed to the air for 24 hours and then test for organic molecules.


Analyze meteorite samples for organic molecules.


In a closed, sterile system, expose inorganic gases to environmental conditions such as electricity and heat.


Use synthetic catalysts to perform organic synthesis procedures.