# Detecting molecules in space?

http://www.forbes.com/sites/alexknapp/2012/02/24/nasa-detects-solid-buckyballs-in-space/

I refer to the above article, which mentions that buckyballs "far smaller than the width of a hair" were detected 6,500 light years from Earth. How do scientists manage to detect such small objects at such a distance, and what techniques do scientists use to identify them?

that show the presence of Buckyballs (as well as the larger C$_{70}$ molecules).