Scientists have been able to detect these fullerenes in interstellar medium (ISM) found between stars. Not much is known about ISM but this find may shed some light as to why they are there and what other insights it might give us.
“Currently, the leading theory is that they form as a result of carbon chemistry in the warm envelopes of dying stars, such as Red giants.”
“The confirmation of interstellar [buckminsterfullerene] represents a breakthrough in our understanding of chemical complexity in the diffuse interstellar medium [..] bringing a new understanding of the types of molecules that may be responsible for the remaining (unidentified) diffuse interstellar bands.”
(Image credit: Wikimedia Commons)