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meteorite identification

If your pictures are not clear or you do not provide enough information, we will not be able to begin the process of identifying the item. A thin section of the Tieschitz meteorite, an ordinary chondrite that fell in 1878 in an area currently in the Czech Republic, shown in a microscopic view. You may also find the following websites useful: MIAC – Canada (Meteorites and Impacts advisory community) http://miac.uqac.ca, Photo Gallery of meteorwrongs: http://meteorites.wustl.edu/meteorwrongs/, American Meteorite Survey Meteorite Identification Page (self-identification; professional identifications): http://www.geocities.com/meteorite_identification/, Arizona State University (professional identifications): http://meteorites.asu.edu/identification/, Meteorites Australia (self-identification; photo send-ins): http://www.meteorites.com.au/found.html, ELKK Meteorites (self-identification): http://www.star-bits.com/ID.htm, International Meteorite Collectors Association Inc. (self-identification; professional identifications): http://imca.repetti.net/metinfo/metfind.html, Meteorite-Identification (self-identification; professional identifications): http://meteorite-identification.com/, Helpful diagnostic tests and characteristics: http://meteorite-identification.com/streak.html, List of research facilities for professional IDs: http://meteorite-identification.com/verification.html, The Meteorite Market (self-identification; professional identifications): http://www.meteoritemarket.com/metid1.htm, The Meteoritical Society (professional identifications): http://meteoriticalsociety.org/pub_bulletinsubmit.cfm, University of New Mexico (self-identification): http://epswww.unm.edu/iom/ident/index.html, Northern Arizona University (self-identification): http://www4.nau.edu/meteorite/Meteorite/Book-Identification.html, Smithsonian Institution – Division of Meteorites (self-identification): http://mineralsciences.si.edu/collections/meteorites.htm, Turnstone Geological Services Ltd. (self-identification): http://www.turnstone.ca/mets.htm. (Top) The Ankober meteorite, an ordinary chondrite that fell in Ethiopia in 1942. Washington University in St. Louis (self-identification; photo send-ins): Helpful diagnostic tests and characteristics: http://meteorites.wustl.edu/what_to_do.htm http://meteorites.wustl.edu/realities.htm, http://meteorites.wustl.edu/meteorwrongs/, http://www.geocities.com/meteorite_identification/, http://meteorites.asu.edu/identification/, http://imca.repetti.net/metinfo/metfind.html, http://meteorite-identification.com/streak.html, http://meteorite-identification.com/verification.html, http://www.meteoritemarket.com/metid1.htm, http://meteoriticalsociety.org/pub_bulletinsubmit.cfm, http://epswww.unm.edu/iom/ident/index.html, http://www4.nau.edu/meteorite/Meteorite/Book-Identification.html, http://mineralsciences.si.edu/collections/meteorites.htm, http://meteorites.wustl.edu/what_to_do.htm, http://meteorites.wustl.edu/realities.htm. This will help you get a feel for what real meteorites look like. Many meteorites, particularly iron meteorites, are quite dense and feel heavier than most rocks found on Earth. Other materials that predate the solar system survive in the matrix, albeit at much lower concentrations. Often, when a meteor falls through the Earth’s atmosphere, these thumbprint-like features called regmaglypts form on the surface. 4. If your rock has vesicles, then it is most likely not a meteorite, but rather a terrestrial igneous rock (like volcanic rock) formed by the wonderful mechanics of the Earth’s systems. Meteorites come in several distinct types. These all work against meteorite preservation. A: A fusion crust is formed upon entry to the atmosphere. It is important to know that it is nearly impossible to identify a meteorite from just looking at it so please be prepared to send in a sample if necessary. No = possible meteorite. A: Not to be confused with vesicles, regmaglypts are small, shallow indentations that may resemble something similar to a thumbprint in a piece of clay. Slag will often retain some of the metal after the metal-ore separation process, and thus can occasionally be magnetic. Meteorite - Meteorite - Types of meteorites: Meteorites traditionally have been divided into three broad categories—stony meteorites (or stones), iron meteorites (irons), and stony iron meteorites (stony irons)—on the basis of the proportions of rock-forming minerals and nickel-iron (also called iron-nickel) metal alloy they contain.

These are so different from the compositions of solar system materials that they could have been produced only by nucleosynthesis (formation of elements) in stars. Indeed, more often than not, they are unrelated. based on variations in chemistry, mineralogy, and structure. The University of Minnesota is an equal opportunity educator and employer.

Once we have received your email with the necessary information, we will pass it along to one of our few faculty members who work with the public to identify meteorites. Stony meteorites make up about 94 percent of all known meteorites, irons about 5 percent, and stony irons about 1 percent.

These are the rocks that have been important to the mining industry in northeastern Minnesota. Yes = possible meteorite. Deviations in a meteorite’s composition from this reference composition provide clues to the processes that influenced the formation of its parent body and the components in it. It is extremely rare that we will have one of the few faculty members who work with meteorites available to meet with you and we do not want you to feel that you have wasted your time. Fewer than 30 meteorites have been found since 1807. Nevertheless, despite more than a century of study and speculation, scientists have yet to definitively determine what the process was. As a result, the Sun’s composition can serve as a reference. There is also good evidence for its having occurred many times. Check out some examples here. Laboratory Services : Sending a Sample for Testing .Bruderheim, stone meteorite, L6 chondrite. Sometimes these small holes have been filled with secondary minerals like quartz and calcite. However, there can be terrestrial rocks that are very dense for their size. The Sun contains more than 99 percent of the mass of the solar system. Meteorites are all shapes and sizes and come in many colors. Meteorites traditionally have been divided into three broad categories—stony meteorites (or stones), iron meteorites (irons), and stony iron meteorites (stony irons)—on the basis of the proportions of rock-forming minerals and nickel-iron (also called iron-nickel) metal alloy they contain. The matrix is richer in volatile elements than are chondrules and inclusions, suggesting that at least some fraction of it formed at a lower temperature.

If you are interested in having and object identified and/or tested, please contact us when the University has reopened and resumed a normal schedule. Department of Earth and Environmental SciencesNewton Horace Winchell School of Earth and Environmental Sciences. Meteorite Identification Tests. One of the most common questions we get: “Have I found a meteorite?” The answer: Unlikely. Less than one in 1000 of the objects brought to the University for identification have proven to be meteorites. Chondrites are the most abundant meteorites (about 87 percent of stony meteorites) in collections. To start the process of meteorite identification with one of our faculty members, please send us 3-5 clear pictures of the rock (including different angles and sides) with a detailed description from the information you learn about your rock from above to esci@umn.edu.

Unlike the organic matter, these materials formed not in the interstellar medium but around stars that died millions to hundreds of millions of years before the solar system formed. This article teaches people the basic characteristics of how to identify a meteorite. 6. Thank you. Statistically speaking it is highly unlikely to stumble upon a meteorite. Meteorite Testing, Verification, Authentication and Appraisal. If chondrule abundance in chondrites is any guide, the chondrule-forming process was one of the most energetic and important in the solar nebula, at least in the region of the asteroid belt.

This means that they may take longer to respond to inquiries and will only be able to provide outreach when available. If your rock feels extremely heavy for its size, then it may be a meteorite, but weight and density does not strictly define a meteorite. Remember that it is best to begin by sending us information and pictures of the rock via email and let us take it from there. Fusion crusts are seldom more than 1 or 2 mm thick and not distinctly vesicular (bubbly). Do you think you may have found a meteorite? However, we have been receiving a multitude of rock and meteorite identification requests and are not able to respond to all inquiries in a timely manner due to limited time and resources. The composition of the Sun must therefore be very close to the average composition of the solar system when it formed. Updated and current - April 2020 .

(Second from top) A piece of the Allende meteorite, a carbonaceous chondrite, which fell as a shower of numerous fragments in Mexico in 1969. Yes = possible meteorite.

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