Scientists claim to have found an extremely rare meteorite, which contains some of the oldest material in the solar system, in Antarctica.
“When we saw her sitting in the middle of the blue ice, we were all excited,” Chicago Field Museum researcher Maria Valdez tells the Chicago Tribune, reproduced by New York Post.
The discovery took place in December, on the eve of an eleven-day expedition. The meteorite’s size is comparable to a squash, which is a fruit in the pumpkin family, according to Store norske lexikon.
Seven kilograms were found
to me The IndependentAccording to the New York Post, the meteorite is one of the largest ever found on the continent. For comparison, only 100 out of a total of 45,000 meteorites taken from Antarctica in the last century should be of a similar or larger size. The Chicago Field Museum reports to the news site.
Maria and her international team of co-researchers can attest to meteorites’ suitability for the frozen landscape: In December, they found five new meteorites during their trip to the continent, including this massive space rock! 😮 pic.twitter.com/bOmK4vGy7U
FieldMuseum January 23, 2023
Valdez explains that the rock contains what they describe in technical terms as a “combination crust,” which is a glassy outer layer. Valdez says his slouching is a sign he’s been on Earth for a long time.
– All meteorites have something to say about the evolution of the Earth. Size doesn’t necessarily matter when it comes to meteorites, and even small meteorites can be incredibly valuable from a scientific point of view, says Valdez.
According to The Independent, most of the meteorites discovered in Antarctica weighed only a few grams. The latest find is much bigger than that – weighing in at just over seven kilograms.
to be analyzed
-Finding one this big..it’s a bit of luck, to be honest.
So says Maria Schönbächler, a professor at Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule Zürich, who was also part of the team that made this unusual discovery.
According to the researchers, the meteorite appears to be made of chondrites, which is the most common material for meteorites. It should indicate that the meteorite probably originated in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter.
Now the meteorite has been sent to the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences in Belgium for a chemical analysis. It is transported in a special cooler box to prevent any melting that could damage the structure.
The Independent writes that Antarctica is a favorite place for scientists looking for meteorites, precisely because of the cold and dry climate, which contributes to the well-preserved land. In addition, active glaciers could help push ancient meteorites to the surface.
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