Astrominerals

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Kamacite, Nantan (Nandan) iron meteorites, Nandan County, Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, China. Size: 4.8×3.0×2.8 cm. The Nantan irons, a witnessed fall in 1516, have a composition of 92.35% iron and 6.96% nickel. Credit: Robert M. Lavinsky.{{free media}}

Minerals found within asteroids or asteroidal meteorites, including meteorites not yet assigned to an astronomical object of likely origin other than Earth are listed and classified here.

The minerals are classified by their geominerals or general minerals classifications.

The kamacite in the image on the right is believed to be from an asteroid that produced the Nantan meteorite.

Minerals occurring on Mars or in meteorites likely originating from Mars can be called Areiominerals, where Areios is the Greek adjective of Ares, the Greek version of Mars (Roman).

Minerals occurring on the Moon or in meteorites likely originating from the Moon can be called Selenominerals.

Minerals occurring on Venus or in meteorites likely originating from Venus can be called Aphroditominerals, although so far there are no known meteorites from Venus found on Earth.

Minerals occurring on Mercury or in meteorites likely originating from Mercury can be called Hermiominerals.

Aarhus meteorites[edit | edit source]

Aarhus meteorite pieces are from the find on 19 October 1951. Credit: Hanne Teglhus.{{fairuse}}

Type: Chondrite.

Class: Ordinary chondrite.

Group: H6.

The meteor split just before the otherwise undramatic impact and two pieces were recovered: Aarhus I (at 300g) and Aarhus II (at 420g), with Aarhus I found in the small woodland of Riis Skov, just a few minutes after impact.[1][2]

Abee meteorites[edit | edit source]

The only mass recovered from the Abee meteorite is a brecciated enstatite chondrite now on display at the American Museum of Natural History. Credit: Jon Taylor.{{free media}}
An example of an E-type Chondrite (from the Abee fall) on display in the Vale Inco Limited Gallery of Minerals at the Royal Ontario Museum. Credit: Captmondo.{{free media}}

The Abee meteorite is the only example in the world of an EH4 impact-melt breccia meteorite.[3]

Parent body: 16 Psyche.

This beautiful and rare brecciated enstatite chondrite (EH4) fell in June of 1952, in Alberta, Canada. According to witnesses, a brilliant fireball lit up the sky north of Edmonton for several seconds and was followed by rumbling sounds. One individual who was at a drive-in movie claimed that the light from the fireball was so bright it obscured the film screen. Several days after the fireball event, a farmer discovered an unusual hole in his wheat field. At the bottom of this hole rested a single large meteorite mass with a weight of ~107 kgs! This was the only Abee mass recovered from the fall. This amazing fusion crusted partial slice was expertly prepared by Russ Kempton of NEMS. It displays the beautiful brecciation that makes Abee unique among the E-chondrites and it also contains a large chondrule which is not common in Abee.

Allende meteorites[edit | edit source]

Allende meteorite, carbonaceous chondrite, small broken individual piece is 1.4 cm across. Credit: James St. John.{{free media}}

The Allende meteorite fell in 1969 near Pueblito de Allende, Chihuahua, Mexico.[4]

The Allende meteorite is the largest carbonaceous chondrite ever found on Earth, where the fireball was witnessed at 01:05 on February 8, 1969, falling over the Mexican state of Chihuahua.[5]

The availability of large quantities of samples of the scientifically-important chondrite class has enabled numerous investigations by many scientists; it is often described as "the best-studied meteorite in history."[6]

Carbonaceous chondrites comprise about 4 percent of all meteorites observed to fall from space. Prior to 1969, the carbonaceous chondrite class was known from a small number of uncommon meteorites such as Orgueil, which fell in France in 1864, many carbonaceous chondrites were small and poorly studied.[7]

[The Allende meteorite][8] "has"[9] [abundant, large][10] [calcium-aluminium-rich inclusions][11] "(CAI)"[9], [which are among the][11] [oldest][8] [objects formed in the solar system.][11]

"In Allende and in Murchison [meteorites] Ca-Al-rich glasses are often associated with forsteritic olivine."[12]

"All groups of chondritic meteorites contain discrete grains of forsteritic olivine with FeO contents below 1 wt% and high concentrations of refractory elements, such as Ca, Al and Ti. Ten such grains (52 to 754 μg) with minor amounts of adhering matrix were separated from the Allende meteorite."[12]

Angers meteorites[edit | edit source]

It fell in 1822 (3 June, 8:15 pm) in Angers (La Doutre), it is classified L6, chondrite with olivine.

Bath Furnace meteorites[edit | edit source]

Bath Furnace Meteorite - some meteorites have a conical shape, formed by melting during their descent through the atmosphere while maintaining one orientation during flight. Credit: James St. John.{{free media}}

Bath Furnace is an L6 chondrite that impacted the evening of 15 November 1902 at the town of Bath Furnace.

Baxter meteorites[edit | edit source]

The Baxter meteorite of 1916 fell on January 26, 1916, as recorded in the Stone County Oracle in Missouri, United States, and is classified as an L6.

Petrologic type 6 dominates, with over 60% of the L chondrites falling into this class. This indicates that the parent body was sizeable enough (greater than 100 kilometres (62 mi) in diameter) to experience strong heating.[13]

Berdic meteorites[edit | edit source]

Reverse side of the Berduc slice shows both the beautiful brecciation and fresh fusion crust of this veined L6 chondrite. Credit: Jon Taylor.{{free media}}

Both the beautiful brecciation and fresh fusion crust of this veined L6 chondrite. 6.8 gram full slice. Date 9 August 2011, 08:27:57

Braunschweig meteorites[edit | edit source]

Exhibit is in the Naturhistorisches Museum, Braunschweig, Germany. Credit: Daderot.{{free media}}

The Braunschweig meteorite is a recent L6 chondrite fall in Germany.

Bunburra Rockhole meteorites[edit | edit source]

Canyon Diablo meteorites[edit | edit source]

Octahedrite - large cut-polished-nitric acid etched slice of the Canyon Diablo Meteorite that fantastically displays the Widmanstätten structure. Credit: James St. John.{{free media}}
The mineral Lonsdaleite is made from carbon with a different arrangement than diamond. Credit: payam.{{fairuse}}

Meteor Crater (Barringer Crater) in the Arizona desert was formed by the impact of an octahedrite ~49,000 years ago during the Late Pleistocene. The rock shown here is a fragment of the impactor, the Canyon Diablo Meteorite. Such fragments have been collected for decades from the desert surrounding the crater. Canyon Diablo is composed of ~90% kamacite, ~1-4% taenite, and up to 8.5% troilite-graphite nodules (FeS & C). The original mass has been estimated to be 100 feet across & about 60,000 tons. Canyon Diablo rocks are well dated to 4.55 billion years.

  1. Group: IAB-MG.

"The mineral Lonsdaleite is a translucent, brownish yellow and is made from the atoms of carbon but the arrangement of these atoms is different from the arrangement of carbon atoms in a diamond. [...] The mineral is very rare and is formed naturally whenever [...] graphite containing meteorites fall on the earth and hit the surface."[14]

"Found in the Canyon Diablo and Goalpara meteorites."[15]

Cape York meteorites[edit | edit source]

Claxton meteorites[edit | edit source]

Claxton is an L6 chondrite meteorite that fell to earth on December 10, 1984 in Georgia, United States.

Dayton meteorites[edit | edit source]

Brianite was first reported from the Dayton meteorite in Montgomery County, Ohio, in 1966.[16]

It occurs in phosphate nodules within the meteorite, with associated minerals: panethite, whitlockite, albite, enstatite, schreibersite, kamacite, taenite, graphite, sphalerite and troilite.[17]

Goalpara meteorites[edit | edit source]

This is a polished face of the Goalpara meteorite, a ureilite. Credit: Martin Horejsi.{{fairuse}}
This is a geniune natural piece of chaoite at 21.60 ct. Credit: SnipView. {{fairuse}}

"Ureilites, named after the Novo-Urei, Russia, fall of 1886, are ultramafic achondrites that contain interstitial carbon as graphite or diamond. The majority consist of olivine + uninverted pigeonite. In a few, the pyroxene is augite and/or orthopyroxene instead. In addition, about 10% of ureilites are polymict breccias, containing a few percent of feldspathic material in addition to typical ureilitic components."[18]

"VNIR reflectance spectra of fresh and external surfaces of the Goalpara meteorite exhibit a slope characteristic of thin silica coatings on basalt (4); however, mid-IR spectra are characterized by olivine and pyroxene features and only show evidence of the silica coating on the external surface."[19]

"The reflectance properties from 0.28-2.5 µm of ureilites share some similarities with those observed for F-, B- and S-type asteroids."[19]

Chaoites are another hexagonal form of native carbon. It occurs as "thin lamellae (3-15 microns wide), alternating with graphite and perpendicular to the {0001} face of graphite."[15]

"Occurs in association with graphite, zircon, and rutile in shocked graphite gneisses from Mottingen in the Ries Crater, Germany. Also observed from the Goalpara and Dyalpur carbonaceous chondrites."[15]

Hex River Mountains meteorites[edit | edit source]

Irwin-Ainsa meteorites[edit | edit source]

The Irwin-Ainsa meteorite (Tucson meteorite) is its type locality.

Ivuna meteorites[edit | edit source]

Kaba meteorites[edit | edit source]

Kaba, Hungary, is a town in Hajdú-Bihar County, Hungary, which had a rare carbonaceous chondrite meteorite fall in 1857.

"The olivines in the Kaba and Mokoia CV3 carbonaceous chondrites range from almost pure forsterite (Fo99.6) to almost pure fayalite (Fa99.9)). Individual grains of fayalite of such high purity have not previously been reported from meteorites; they can reach 100 μm in diameter and occur in the matrix, chondrules, forsterite-enstatite aggregates, and rims around Ca, Al-rich inclusions, chondrules, and aggregates. The fayalite is three to nine times richer in Mn than in bulk CI chondrites. Many grains are associated with magnetite, troilite, and pentlandite, an assemblage that suggests relatively oxidizing conditions."[20]

Kenton County meteorites[edit | edit source]

Lombard meteorites[edit | edit source]

Muonionalusta meteorites[edit | edit source]

The Muonionalusta meteorite, on loan to the Prague National Museum in 2010, is the largest meteorite ever exhibited in the Czech Republic. Credit: Krenakarore.{{free media}}
Slice (across 9.6 cm) of a Muonionalusta meteorite fragment, shows the Widmanstätten pattern. Credit: R. Tanaka.{{free media}}

The first fragment of the Muonionalusta meteorite was found in 1906 near the village of Kitkiöjärvi.[21][22] Around forty pieces are known today, some being quite large, other fragments have been found in a 25 by 15 kilometres (15.5 mi × 9.3 mi) area in the Pajala district of Norrbotten County, approximately 140 kilometres (87 mi) north of the Arctic Circle.

The meteorite was first described in 1910 by Professor A. G. Högbom, who named it after the nearby place Muonionalusta on the Muonio River.[23] The Muonionalusta meteorite, probably the oldest known meteorite (4.5653 ± 0.0001 billion years),[24] marks the first occurrence of stishovite in an iron meteorite.

It is the oldest discovered meteorite impacting the Earth during the Quaternary Period, about one million years ago and is quite clearly part of the iron core or mantle of a planetoid, which shattered into many pieces upon its fall on our planet.[25] Since landing on Earth the meteorite has experienced four ice ages, was unearthed from a glacial moraine in the northern tundra], and has a strongly weathered surface covered with cemented faceted pebbles.

New analysis of this strongly shock-metamorphosed iron meteorite has shown a content of 8.4% nickel and trace amounts of rare elements—0.33 ppm gallium, 0.133 ppm germanium and 1.6 ppm iridium and contains the minerals chromite, daubréelite, schreibersite, akaganéite and inclusions of troilite.[23]

For the first time, analysis has proved the presence of a form of quartz altered by extremely high pressure—stishovite,[23] probably a pseudomorphosis after tridymite. From the article "First discovery of stishovite in an iron meteorite": Stishovite, a high pressure polymorph of SiO2, is an exceptionally rare mineral...and has only been found in association with a few meteorite impact structures.... Clearly, the meteoritic stishovite cannot have formed by isostatic pressure prevailing in the core of the parent asteroid.... One can safely assume then that stishovite formation (in the Muonionalusta meteorite) is connected with an impact event. The glass component might have formed directly as a shock melt....[21]

The lead isotope dating in the Muonionalusta meteorite concluded the stishovite was from an impact event hundreds of millions of years ago: "The presence of stishovite signifies that this meteorite was heavily shocked, possibly during the 0.4 Ga [billion years] old breakup event indicated by cosmic ray exposure...."[24]

Fragments of the Muonionalusta meteorite are held by numerous institutions around the world.

  • Geological Institute, Uppsala, 15 kilograms (33 lb).
  • Naturhistorisches Museum , Vienna, 96 g.
  • Museum für Naturkunde, Berlin, 82 g.
  • Max Planck Society (Max Planck Institute), Mainz, 96.3 g.
  • Paneth Collection (also at the Max Planck Institute), Mainz, 142.5 g.
  • National Museum of Natural History, Washington, 197 g.
  • American Museum of Natural History, New York, 84 g.
  • Field Museum of Natural History, Chicago, 65.2 g.
  • University of California, Los Angeles, 55 g.[1]
  • Vernadsky State Geological Museum, Moscow 2404 g.
  • Observatory and Planetarium Brno, Czech Republic, 21 kg.
  • Rahmi M. Koç Museum, Istanbul.
  1. Type: IVA (Of).
  2. Class: Octahedrite.
  3. Group: Iron.
  4. Structural classification: Fine Octahedrite.
  5. Composition: Ni, Ga, Ge.
  6. Country: Sweden.
  7. Region: Norrbotten.
  8. Coordinates: 67°48'N 23°6.8'E.
  9. Observed fall: No.
  10. Found date: 1906.
  11. Strewn field: Yes.

Murchison meteorites[edit | edit source]

Murphy meteorites[edit | edit source]

Murray meteorites[edit | edit source]

Nantan meteorites[edit | edit source]

The Nantan (Nandan) iron meteorites were found in Nandan County, Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, China.

The Nantan meteorite is an iron meteorite that belongs to the IAB meteorite (IAB) group and the MG (main group) subgroup.[26]

New Concord meteorites[edit | edit source]

Ordinary chondrite is the New Concord Meteorite from Ohio, USA. Credit: James St. John.{{free media}}

New Concord Meteorite, the fragments killed a young cow may be fictional. New Concord is an L6 chondrite (“L” meaning low total iron content; “6” refers to an intensely recrystallized.

Nentmannsdorf meteorites[edit | edit source]

New Baltimore meteorites[edit | edit source]

Nōgata meteorites[edit | edit source]

The Nōgata meteorite is an L6 chondrite meteorite fragment, found in Fukuoka Prefecture, Japan.

North Chile meteorites[edit | edit source]

Novato meteorites[edit | edit source]

The Novato is N L6 chondrite breccia.

Onello meteorites[edit | edit source]

The Onello meteorites were found in the Onello River basin, Sakha Republic; Yakutia, Russia.[27][28]

Orgueil meteorites[edit | edit source]

The Orgueil meteorite fell on May 14, 1864, a few minutes after 20:00 local time, near Orgueil in southern France. About 20 stones fell over an area of 5-10 square kilometres.

Type: Chondrite.

Class: Carbonaceous chondrite.

Group: CI1.

The Orgueil meteor is highly enriched in (volatile) mercury - undetectable in the solar photosphere, and this is a major driver of the "mercury paradox" that mercury abundances in meteors do not follow its volatile nature and isotopic ratios based expected behaviour in the solar nebula.[29][30]

One notable discovery in Orgueil was a high concentration of isotopically anomalous xenon called "xenon-HL". The carrier of this gas is extremely fine-grained diamond dust that is older than the Solar System itself, known as presolar grains.

Peace River meteorites[edit | edit source]

A partial slice from Peace River meteorite, fallen on March 31, 1963, is shown. Credit: Jon Taylor.{{free media}}

Peace River is a L6 chondrite meteorite fall on the morning of March 31, 1963.

Peetz meteorites[edit | edit source]

H isotopic composition of water in fluid inclusions in the Peetz L6 Chondrite.

Sikhote-Alin meteorites[edit | edit source]

Sixiangkou meteorites[edit | edit source]

The Sixiangkou meteorite was found in the Gaogang District, Jiangsu Province, Taizhou Prefecture, China.[31]

Smithonia meteorites[edit | edit source]

Success meteorites[edit | edit source]

This L6 chondrite was witnessed to fall on April 18, 1924 in Clay County, Arkansas. Credit: Jon Taylor.{{free media}}

This L6 chondrite was witnessed to fall on April 18, 1924 in Clay County, Arkansas.

Sutter's Mill meteorites[edit | edit source]

Tagish Lake meteorites[edit | edit source]

A 159 gram fragment of the Tagish Lake meteorite is shown. Credit: Mike Zolensky, NASA JSC.{{free media}}

The pieces of the Tagish Lake meteorite are dark grey to almost black in color with small light-colored inclusions, and a maximum size of ~2.3 kg.[32]

Tenham meteorites[edit | edit source]

Ordinary chondrite meteorite was found in Queensland, Australia, 1879, on display in the Natural History Museum, London. Credit: Chemical Engineer.{{free media}}
This specimen is a fusion crusted half slice that weighs 72.3 grams. Credit: Jon Taylor.{{free media}}

The Tenham fell in 1879 in South Gregory, Queensland, Australia, and is classified as an L6 Chondrite.

The mineral Ringwoodite, a high-pressure form of olivine, was first discovered in Tenham meteorites in 1969. Veins of Ringwoodite in this chondrite were produced by shock metamorphism. Large quantities of this mineral are thought to exist in Earth's mantle and the substance was named after the Australian earth scientist Alfred Ringwood.

While Tenham isn't the most interesting meteorite from an aesthetic standpoint it does possess some attractive metal flaking in the matrix.

Umbarger meteorites[edit | edit source]

The Umbarger meteorite was found in Randall County, Texas.[31]

Uwet meteorites[edit | edit source]

Viñales Meteorites[edit | edit source]

Ordinary chondrite (Viñales Meteorite) is from the Asteroid Belt between Mars and Jupiter. Credit: James St. John.{{free media}}

February 2019. Over 50 kilograms of rocks have been collected. It is an L6 chondrite, which means that it has "low" iron content.

Walters meteorites[edit | edit source]

Walters meteorite is an L6 chondrite. Credit: Claire H..{{free media}}

Walters is an L6 chondrite.

Winchcombe meteorites[edit | edit source]

Zagami meteorites[edit | edit source]

The Zagami Martian meteorite was found in Katsina State, Nigeria.[31]

Zagami is the largest single Martian meteorite ever found, weighing about 18 kilograms (40 lb).[33] It landed 10 feet (3.0 m) from a farmer near Zagami, Nigeria, and became buried in a hole about 2 feet (0.61 m) deep. "The Zagami meteorite is the most easily obtainable SNC meteorite available to collectors."[34][35] referring to the SNC classification of meteorites (Shergottites, Nakhlites, Chassignites), of which Martian meteorites belong.

Zaklodzie meteorites[edit | edit source]

Zaklodzie is an enstatite-rich ungrouped primitive achondrite that was found in Zamosk, Poland in September of 1998. Credit: Jon Taylor.{{free media}}

The meteorite is composed of 60% orthoenstatite, 20% meteoric iron, 10% troilite and 10% feldspar. Accessory minerals include schreibersite, oldhamite, alabandite, keilite and amphibole. The meteoric iron has a Nickel content of 16%.[36] The mineral composition is similar to an enstatite chondrite with strongly metamorphosed chondrules. A second interpretation is that the textures are a result of cumulate crystallization or an impact-melt breccia.[37][38] It's the type locality]] of two minerals: browneite (IMA 2012-008) and buseckite (IMA 2011-070).[39]

Akimotoites[edit | edit source]

Formula: (Mg,Fe)SiO
3
.

Akimotoite is a rare silicate mineral in the ilmenite group of minerals,[40] polymorphous with pyroxene and bridgmanite, a natural silicate perovskite that is the most abundant mineral in Earth's silicate mantle.[31][41][42] Akimotoite has a vitreous luster, is colorless, and has a white or colorless streak, crystallizes in the trigonal crystal system in space group R3, is the silicon analogue of geikielite (MgTiO
3
).[31]

The crystal structure is similar to that of ilmenite (FeTiO
3
) with Si and Mg in regular octahedral coordination with oxygen, the octahedra align in discrete layers alternating up the c-axis, space group is R3 (trigonal) with a = 4.7284 Å; c = 13.5591 Å; V = 262.94 Å3; Z = 6.[43]

Akimotoite was found in the Tenham meteorites in Queensland, Australia, is believed to have formed as the result of an extraterrestrial shock event, is the silicon analogue of geikielite (MgTiO3), was named after physicist Syun-iti Akimoto (also known as Shun'ichi Akimoto (秋本 俊一?)) (1925–2004), University of Tokyo.[31]

It has also been reported from the Sixiangkou meteorite in the Gaogang District, Jiangsu Province, Taizhou Prefecture, China; the Zagami Martian meteorite, Katsina State, Nigeria and from the Umbarger meteorite, Randall County, Texas.[31]

Akimotoite is believed to be a significant mineral in the Earth's mantle at depths of 600–800 kilometres (370–500 mi) in cooler regions of the mantle such as where a subducted slab enters into the lower mantle, as Akimotoite is elastically anisotropic and has been suggested as a cause of seismic anisotropy in the lower transition zone and uppermost lower mantle.[44]

Alabandites[edit | edit source]

Group of octahedral alabandite crystals is partially coated with pink rhodochrosite, from the Uchucchacua Mine, Oyon, Lima, Peru. Credit: CarlesMillan.{{free media}}

Alabandite or alabandine (International Mineralogical Association (IMA) symbol: Abd)[45] is a rarely occurring manganese sulfide mineral that crystallizes in the cubic crystal system[46] with the chemical composition Mn2+
S
and develops commonly massive to granular aggregates, but rarely cubic or octahedral crystals to 1 cm.

Member of the Galena Group.[47]

Other Members of this group: Altaite PbTe, Clausthalite PbSe, Galena PbS, Niningerite (Mg,Fe2+
,Mn2+
)S
, Oldhamite (Ca,Mg)S.[47]

At ambient pressure, alabandite (α-MnS) is the stable MnS polymorph from room temperature up to the melting point of 1655 °C (Staffansson, 1976; Kang, 2010).[47]

Polymorphism & Series: Dimorphous with rambergite.[46]

Occurrence: May be in large quantities in epithermal polymetallic sulfide veins and especially in low-temperature manganese deposits, an uncommon constituent of a number of meteorites.[46]

Association: Galena (PbS), chalcopyrite (CuFeS
2
), sphalerite {ZnS), pyrite (FeS
2
), acanthite (Ag
2
S
), native tellurium, rhodochrosite (MnCO
3
), calcite, rhodonite (CaMn
3
Mn[Si
5
O
15
]
), quartz.[46]

Alabandite crystallizes in the cubic crystal system in the space group Fm3m with the lattice parameter a = 5.22 Å[48] and four formula units per unit cell.[46]

Common Impurities: Fe,Mg,Co.[47]

Sometimes it was found in meteorites [Zaklodzie meteorite].[46]

Allabogdanites[edit | edit source]

Allabogdanite is a very rare phosphide mineral with formula (Fe,Ni)
2
P, found in 1994 in the Onello meteorite.[27][28] It was described for an occurrence in the Onello meteorite in the Onello River basin, Sakha Republic; Yakutia, Russia; associated with taenite, schreibersite, kamacite, graphite and awaruite.[28] It was named for Russian geologist Alla Bogdanova.[49]

In a June 2021 study, scientists reported the discovery of terrestrial allabogdanite in a sedimentary formation, located in the Negev desert of Israel, just southwest of the Dead Sea.[50]

Allendeites[edit | edit source]

Allendeites have the formula Sc
4
Zr
3
O
12
.

Allendeite is an oxide mineral.[4] Its International Mineralogical Association (IMA) symbol is Aed.[51] Allendeite was discovered in a small ultrarefractory inclusion within the Allende meteorite.[4] This inclusion has been named ACM-1.[4] It is one of several scandium rich minerals that have been found in meteorites.[4] Allendeite is trigonal, with a calculated density of 4.84 g/cm3.[4] The new mineral was found along with hexamolybdenum.[4] These minerals, are believed to demonstrate conditions during the early stages of the Solar System, as is the case with many CV3 carbonaceous chondrites such as the Allende meteorite.[4] It is named after the Allende meteorite that fell in 1969 near Pueblito de Allende, Chihuahua, Mexico.[4]

Allendeite was found as nano-crystals in an ultrarefractory inclusion in the Allende meteorite.[4] The Allende meteorite has shown to be full of new minerals, after nearly forty years it has produced one in ten of the now known minerals in meteorites.[4] This CV3 carbonaceous chondrite was the largest ever recovered on earth and is referred to as the best-studied meteorite in history.[4] The inclusion has only been viewed via electron microscopy.[4] The sample is one centimeter in diameter and has been entrusted to the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of Natural History with the catalog number USNM7554.[4] One crystal studied is a single 15 x 25 micron size with included perovskite, various osmium-iridium-molybdenum-tungsten alloys, and scandium-stabilized tazheranite.[4] In fact, all allendeite was in contact with perovskite.[4] The grains are [anhedral, with no observable crystal forms or twinning.[4]

Various scandium rich minerals have been found in meteorites, including; davisite, panguite, kangite, tazheranite, thortveitite, and eringaite.[4] Of these, allendeite is the most Sc rich, with only pretulite containing substantially more scandium.[4]

Color, streak, luster, Mohs hardness, tenacity, cleavage, fracture, density, and refractive index could not be observed because the grain size was too small and the section bearing the mineral was optically thick.[4]

Antitaenites[edit | edit source]

"Antitaenite is a meteoritic metal alloy mineral composed of iron and nickel, 20-40% Ni (and traces of other elements) that has a face centered cubic crystal structure."[52]

It exists as a new mineral species occurring in both iron meteorites and in chondrites[53]

The pair of minerals antitaenite and taenite constitute the first example in nature of two minerals that have the same crystal structure (face centered cubic) and can have the same chemical composition (same proportions of Fe and Ni) - but differ in their electronic structures: taenite has a high magnetic moment whereas antitaenite has a low magnetic moment.[54]

This difference arises from a high-magnetic-moment to low-magnetic-moment transition occurring in the Fe-Ni bi-metallic alloy series.[55]

Brezinaites[edit | edit source]

Formula: Cr
3
S
4
.[56]

Hardness: 3½ - 4½.[56]

Space Group: I2/m (synthetic).[56]

Crystal System: Monoclinic.[56]

Class (H-M): 2/m - Prismatic.[56]

Cell Parameters: a = 5.96(1) Å, b = 3.425(5) Å, c = 11.270(15) Å, β = 91.53°.[56]

Z: 2.[56]

Transparency: Opaque.[56]

Common Impurities: Fe,V,Ti,Mn,Ni.[56]

Morphology: Anhedral grains to 3 mm.[56]

Type Locality: Tucson meteorite (Irwin-Ainsa meteorite), Box Canyon, Pima County, Arizona, USA.[56]

Associated Minerals at Type Locality: Forsterite, Enstatite, Diopside, Anorthite, Kamacite, Taenite and Schreibersite.[56]

6 photos of Brezinaite associated with Troilite (FeS).[56]

Cr3-analogue of zolenskyite.[56]

Brianites[edit | edit source]

Small white microcrystals of brianite are from the Dayton meteorite. Credit: David Hospital.{{free media}}

Small white microcrystals of the extremely rare mineral brianite from the type locality in Dayton meteorite (Dayton Meteorite, Montgomery County, Ohio, United States of America) are shown in the image on the right. Brianite only occurs in three known localities worldwide (all of them meteorites).

First identified in an iron meteorite.[16]

Formula: Na
2
CaMg(PO
4
)
2
.[16]

System: Monoclinic.[16]

Class: Prismatic (2/m)
(same H-M symbol).[16]

Symmetry: P21/a.[16]

Unit cell: a = 13.36 Å, b = 5.23 Å,
c = 9.13 Å, β = 91.2°; Z = 4.[16]

Color: Colorless.[16]

Habit: Anhedral grains with lamellar structur visible under polarized light.

Twinning: Polysynthetic on {100}.

Mohs hardness: 4-5.[16]

Luster: Vitreous.

Diaphaneity: Transparent.

Specific gravity: 3.0-3.1.[16]

Optical properties: biaxial (-).

Refractive indices: nα = 1.598, nβ = 1.605, nγ = 1.608.[16]

Birefringence = 0.010.[16]

2V: 63° to 65°.[16]

Extinction = 2 to 3° from lamellae.[16]

Isostructural with: Merwinite.[16]

Carlsbergites[edit | edit source]

Agpalilik meteorite is outside the Geological Museum in Copenhagen. Credit: Michael B. H..{{free media}}

Carlsbergite was first described in the Agpalilik fragment of the Cape York meteorite.

It is a chromium nitride mineral (CrN),[57] named after the Carlsberg Foundation that backed the recovery of the Agpalilik fragment from the Cape York meteorite.[57]

It occurs in meteorites along the grain boundaries of kamacite or troilite in the form of tiny plates,[57] associated with kamacite, taenite, daubreelite, troilite and sphalerite.[58]

In addition to the Cape York meteorite, carlsbergite has been reported from:[59]

  • the North Chile meteorite in the Antofagasta Province, Chile
  • the Nentmannsdorf meteorite of Bahretal, Erzgebirge, Saxony
  • the Okinawa Trough, Senkaku Islands, Okinawa Prefecture, Japan
  • the Uwet meteorite of Cross River State, Nigeria
  • the Sikhote-Alin meteorite, Sikhote-Alin Mountains, Russia
  • the Hex River Mountains meteorite from the Cape Winelands District, Western Cape Province, South Africa
  • the Canyon Diablo meteorite of Meteor Crater, Coconino County, Arizona
  • the Smithonia meteorite of Oglethorpe County, Georgia
  • the Kenton County meteorite of Kenton County, Kentucky
  • the Lombard meteorite of Broadwater County, Montana
  • the Murphy meteorite of Cherokee County and the Lick Creek meteorite of Davidson County, North Carolina
  • the New Baltimore meteorite of Somerset County, Pennsylvania

Caswellsilverites[edit | edit source]

  1. Chemical Formula: NaCrS
    2
    .[60]
  2. Molecular Weight: 139.12 gm.[60]
  3. Environment: As inclusions in enstatite crystals and in the brecciated matrix of a meteorite.[60]
  4. Locality: In the Norton County enstatite achondrite and the Qingzhen enstatite chondrite meteorites.[60]
  5. Axial Ratios: a:c = 1:5.49295.[60]
  6. Cell Dimensions: a = 3.55, c = 19.5, Z = 3; V = 212.82 Density(Calc)= 3.26.[60]
  7. Crystal System: Trigonal - Hexagonal Scalenohedral H-M Symbol (3 2/m) Space Group: R 3m.
  8. Color: Yellow gray.[60]
  9. Density: 3.21.[60]
  10. Diaphaneity: Opaque.[60]
  11. Hardness: 1-2 - Between Talc and Gypsum.[60]
  12. Luster: Metallic.[60]

Chromites[edit | edit source]

Chromite is from Mtoroshanga, Makonde District, Mashonaland West, Zimbabwe. Credit: Weinrich Minerals, Inc.{{free media}}

Chromite is a crystalline mineral composed primarily of iron(II) oxide and chromium(III) oxide compounds, represented by the chemical formula of FeCr
2
O
4
. It is an oxide mineral belonging to the spinel group, where the element magnesium can substitute for iron in variable amounts as it forms a solid solution with magnesiochromite (MgCr
2
O
4
).[61] A substitution of the element aluminum can also occur, leading to hercynite (FeAl
2
O
4
).[62] Chromite today is mined particularly to make stainless steel through the production of ferrochrome (FeCr), which is an iron-chromium alloy.[63]

Chromite is also common in iron meteorites [Saint Aubin meteorite] and form in association with silicates and troilite minerals.[64]

Diamonds[edit | edit source]

Diamonds occur in the Orgueil meteorites.

Djerfisherites[edit | edit source]

Bronze colored microcrystals of the very rare mineral djerfischerite from this famous Russian locality: Rasvumtchorr, Khibiny, Kola, Russian Federation. Credit: David Hospital.{{free media}}

Djerfisherite is an alkali copper–iron sulfide mineral and a member of the djerfisherite group.

The chemical composition is somewhat variable. A Russian study from 1979 on djerfisherite from the Kola Peninsula found the formula K
6
Na(Fe,Cu)
24
S
26
Cl
, but a study in 2007 of a samples from Siberia found no detectable sodium and states that the formula K
6
(Fe,Cu,Ni)
25
S
26
Cl
is considered the most appropriate.[65] Both crystallographic studies have 58 atoms per unit cell. Sulfur atoms are in three nonequivalent locations, containing 12, 6, and 8 atoms per unit cell. The later study put a copper atom where the earlier study put a sodium atom.[66] More information on the structure and other questions is available,[65] as well as 3-D models.[67]

The Webmineral "Mineralogy Database" site gives the "chemical formula" as K
6
Na(Fe2+
,Cu,Ni)
25
S
26
Cl
, apparently in error, and an "empirical formula" as K
6
NaFe2+
19
Cu
4
NiS
26
Cl
.[68]

Formula: K
6
(Fe,Cu,Ni)
25
S
26
Cl
.[67]

Its type locality is the Kota-Kota meteorite (Marimba meteorite), Nkhotakota, Central Region, Malawi,[67] and St. Mark's meteorite, Intsika Yethu Local Municipality, Chris Hani District Municipality, Eastern Cape, South Africa.[67] It was first described in 1966 and named after professor Daniel Jerome Fisher (1896–1988), University of Chicago.[67] It has been reported from meteorites, copper-nickel hydrothermal deposits, skarn, pegmatite, kimberlites and alkalic intrusive complexes, with associated minerals: kamacite, troilite, schreibersite, clinoenstatite, tridymite, cristobalite, daubreelite, graphite, roedderite, alabandite, talnakhite, pentlandite, chalcopyrite, magnetite, valleriite, sphalerite and platinum minerals.[69]

  1. System: Cubic.[67]
  2. Class: Hexoctahedral (m3m), H-M symbol: (4/m 3 2/m).[67]
  3. Symmetry: Pm3m.[67]
  4. Unit cell: a = 10.465 Å; Z = 2.[67]
  5. Color: Greenish yellow, khaki to olive drab.[67]
  6. Habit: Rounded grains.
  7. Mohs: 3.5.[67]
  8. Luster: Submetallic.[67]
  9. Diaphaneity: Opaque.[67]
  10. Optical properties: Isotropic.
  11. Common Impurities: Na,Mg.[67]
  12. Morphology: Rounded grains to 0.4 mm.[67]
  13. Geological Setting: Meteorites, hydrothermal Ni-Cu ores, pegmatites, kimberlites, mafic alkalic diatreme.[67]

Fayalites[edit | edit source]

Fayalite (Fe
2
SiO
4
, commonly abbreviated to Fa) is the iron-rich end-member of the olivine solid solution series. Fayalite crystallizes in the orthorhombic system (space group Pbnm) with cell parameters a 4.82 Å, b 10.48 Å and c 6.09 Å.

Fayalites occur in the Kaba meteorites.

Forsterites[edit | edit source]

Forsterite (Mg
2
SiO
4
; commonly abbreviated as Fo; also known as white olivine) is the magnesium-rich end-member of the olivine solid solution series, isomorphous with the iron-rich end-member, fayalite. Forsterite crystallizes in the orthorhombic system (space group Pbnm) with cell parameters a 4.75 Å (0.475 nm), b 10.20 Å (1.020 nm) and c 5.98 Å (0.598 nm).[70]

Forsterites occur in the Kaba meteorites.

Graphites[edit | edit source]

Graphite is from Old Beneis Farm, Marlborough, Cheshire County, New Hampshire, USA. Credit: Robert M. Lavinsky.{{free media}}

Crystal system: Hexagonal.

Crystal class: Dihexagonal dipyramidal (6/mmm), Hermann–Mauguin notation: (6/m 2/m 2/m).

Space group: P63mc (buckled) P63/mmc (flat).

Unit cell: a = 2.461, c = 6.708 [Å]; Z = 4.

Color: Iron-black to steel-gray; deep blue in transmitted light.

Crystal habit: Tabular, six-sided foliated masses, granular to compacted masses.

Twinning: Present.

Cleavage: Basal – perfect on {0001}.

Fracture: Flaky, otherwise rough when not on cleavage.

Tenacity: Flexible non-elastic, sectile.

Mohs scale hardness: 1–3.

Luster: Metallic, earthy.

Streak: Black.

Diaphaneity: Opaque, transparent only in extremely thin flakes.

Specific gravity: 1.9–2.3.

Density: 2.09–2.23 g/cm3.

Optical properties: Uniaxial (−).

Pleochroism: Strong.

Solubility: Soluble in molten nickel, warm chlorosulfuric acid.[71]

Other characteristics: strongly anisotropic, conducts electricity, greasy feel, readily marks.

In meteorites, graphite occurs with troilite and silicate minerals.[72] Small graphitic crystals in meteoritic iron are called cliftonite.[73][74] Some microscopic grains have distinctive isotopic compositions, indicating that they were formed before the Solar System.[75] They are one of about 12 known types of minerals that predate the Solar System and have also been detected in molecular clouds. These minerals were formed in the ejecta when supernovae exploded or low to intermediate-sized stars expelled their outer envelopes late in their lives. Graphite may be the second or third oldest mineral in the Universe.[76][77]

Hypersthenes[edit | edit source]

In L chondrites the most abundant minerals are olivine and hypersthene (an orthopyroxene), as well as iron–nickel alloy and troilite.

Kamacites[edit | edit source]

This image is a cross-section of the Laguna Manantiales meteorite showing Widmanstätten patterns. Credit: Aram Dulyan.{{free media}}

"Kamacite is an alloy of iron and nickel, which is only found on earth in meteorites. The proportion iron:nickel is between 90:10 to 95:5; small quantities of other elements, such as cobalt or carbon may also be present. The mineral has a metallic luster, is gray and has no clear cleavage although the structure is isometric-hexoctahedral. Its density is around 8 g/cm³ and its hardness is 4 on the Mohs scale. It is also sometimes called balkeneisen."[78]

The Nantan irons, a piece is on the right, a witnessed fall in 1516, have a composition of 92.35% iron and 6.96% nickel.

The Nantan meteorite is an iron meteorite that belongs to the IAB meteorite (IAB) group and the MG (main group) subgroup.[26]

The fall of the meteorite might have been observed in 1516, but it is difficult to assess if this event is connected with the pieces that were retrieved in 1958.[79]

The meteorite burst during passage through the atmosphere and the pieces were scattered in a strewn field 28 kilometres (17 mi) long and 8 kilometres (5.0 mi) wide near the city of Nantan, Nandan County, Guangxi (China).[79]

The fragments were not retrieved until the 1950s when they were gathered for smelting to make metal for the growing industrialization of China, but it was found that the meteoric iron contained too much nickel for smelting.[79]

The Nantan meteorite was classified as an IIICD in 2000, but was reclassified as an IAB-MG in 2006. 9,500 kilograms (20,900 lb) have been retrieved, the largest fragment having a mass of 2,000 kilograms (4,400 lb). Most fragments show strong signs of weathering, due to the long time it took to retrieve them. The meteoric iron has a Nickel concentration of 6.96%.[80]

Keilites[edit | edit source]

Keilite has the chemical formula (Fe2+
,Mg)S
), is found in enstatite chondrites.[81] Keilite is the iron-dominant analog of niningerite.[82][83] Keilite is named after Klaus Keil (born 1934).[82]

Examples of keilite occurrences are enstatite chondrites and the Zakłodzie meteorite.[83] It appears to be confined to impact-melt influenced enstatite chondrites that were quenched. There are also some meteorites interpreted as impact-melt breccias that don't contain keilite. This is explained as a deeper burial after impact, which slowed cooling and enabled retrograde reactions (diapthoresis) to take place.[84]

  1. Molecular weight: 81.91 gm.
  2. Crystal system: Isometric.
  3. Class: Hexoctahedral.
  4. Symmetry: Fm3m (No. 225).
  5. Unit cell: a=5.1717(18)Å.
  6. Colour: Grey.
  7. Habit: Microscopic crystals.
  8. Cleavage: Distinct/Good.
  9. Tenacity: Brittle.
  10. Luster: Metallic.
  11. Diaphaneity: Opaque.
  12. Density: 3.958 gm/cm3.

Niningerites[edit | edit source]

Niningerite is a magnesium-iron-manganese sulfide mineral with the chemical formula (Mg,Fe2+
,Mn2+
)S
that is found in enstatite chondrite meteorites.[85] Niningerite is the magnesium-dominant analog of keilite.[86] This mineral is named after Harvey H. Nininger.

  1. Molecular Weight: 68.90 gm.[85]
  2. Empirical formula: Mg
    0.6
    Fe2+
    0.3
    Mn2+
    0.1
    S
    .[85]
  3. Environment: In less extensively metamorphosed enstatite chondrite meteorites intergrown with kamacite and troilite.[85]
  4. Locality: In the Abee, Saint-Suveur, Adhi-Kot, Indarch, St. Marks, Qingzhen, and Kota-Kota enstatite chondrite meteorites.[85]
  5. Crystal system: Cubic.
  6. Class: Hexoctahedral (m3m)
    H-M symbol: (4/m 3 2/m).[85]
  7. Symmetry: Fm3m.
  8. Unit cell: a = 5.17 Å; Z = 4; V = 138.19.[85]
  9. Color: gray.[85]
  10. Mohs: ​3 12 - 4.[85]
  11. Luster: metallic.[85]
  12. Diaphaneity: opaque.[85]
  13. Habit: Inclusions - Generally found as inclusions in other minerals.[85]
  14. Habit: Microscopic Crystals - Crystals visible only with microscopes.[85]

Oldhamites[edit | edit source]

Oldhamite is from Lichtenberg Absetzer Mine (dump, slag), Ronneburg U deposit, Gera, Thuringia, Germany. Credit: Leon Hupperichs.{{free media}}

Oldhamite has the chemical formula (Ca,Mg)S.[87][88] Ferrous iron may also be present in the mineral resulting in the chemical formula (Ca,Mg,Fe)S.[89] It is a pale to dark brown accessory mineral in meteorites. It crystallizes in the cubic crystal system, but typically occurs as anhedral grains between other minerals.

It was first described in 1862 for an occurrence in the Bustee meteorite, Gorakhpur, Uttar Pradesh, India, and named for Irish geologist Thomas Oldham (1816–1878), the Director of the Indian Geological Survey.[87][88]

It occurs as an interstitial mineral phase between silicate minerals in enstatite chondrite and achondrite meteorites.[87][89] It occurs in association with enstatite, augite, niningerite, osbornite, troilite, gypsum and calcite.[87] It has been reported from a variety of meteorite locations around the world including the Allan Hills 84001 meteorite of Antarctica and from a slag occurrence in France and a coal deposit in Poland.[88]

Olivines[edit | edit source]

Angers meteorite fell in 1822 (3 June, 8:15 pm) in Angers (La Doutre), it is classified L6, chondrite with olivine.

Osbornites[edit | edit source]

Osbornite is a very rare natural form of titanium nitride (TiN), found almost exclusively in meteorites.[90][91]

Orthopyroxenes[edit | edit source]

Bunburra Rockhole is an anomalous basaltic achondritic meteorite.[92][93][94] Originally classified as a eucrite,[94] it was thought to belong to a group of meteorites that originated from the asteroid 4 Vesta,[95][96][93] but has since been reclassified based on oxygen and chromium isotopic compositions. It was observed to fall on July 21, 2007, 04:43:56 local time, by the Desert Fireball Network (DFN).[94][96] Two fragments weighing 150g and 174g were recovered by the DFN at 31°21.0′S, 129°11.4′E in the [Nullarbor Desert region, South Australia in November of the same year.[94][96] This is the first meteorite to be recovered using the Desert Fireball Network observatory.[94][96]

Bunburra rockhole is described as a basaltic monomict breccia, which is composed of three different lithologies that can be distinguished by their grain sizes. There is no evidence of weathering, and very few shock features are present. The majority of the meteorite is subophitic in texture.

Primary mineralogy:

  • Orthopyroxene, Ferrosilite Fs
    62.5
    Wo
    3.6
    , ~ 1 mm in size.
  • Plagioclase, Anorthite An
    84.1
    to An
    88.2
    ~ 1 mm in size.
  • Augite, Ferrosilite Fs
    27.7
    Wo
    43.0
    as lamella within pyroxene.

Oxygen Isotope analyses have contributed to the classification of meteorites and identification of potential origins. Typically, meteorites of a particular classification will exhibit similar oxygen isotope signatures that are often distinct from meteorites that have originated from other planetary bodies. Equilibrated asteroids, planets and moons are predicted to produce meteorites with distinctive oxygen isotope signatures based on the composition and environment of the planetary body. Bunburra Rockhole exhibits a range of oxygen isotope signatures that vary as a function of the three different lithological subtypes present.[96] This indicates that the parent body of the sample may not have been fully equilibrated at the time of crystallization of the meteorite components in this sample.[96]

The oxygen and chromium isotope results from Bunburra Rockhole are quite different to the bulk of the HED meteorite clan.[97][98] Recently published Cr and O isotope data[98] suggest that Bunburra Rockhole is isotopically similar to Asuka 881394;[99] another outlier of the HED group. Such outliers also exhibit differences in minor element ratios to the HED clan.[98] However, the mineralogy and composition of the Bunburra Rockhole imply it did originate from a differentiated, V-type asteroid,[96][98] but not from 4-Vesta.

This type of brecciated achondrite is similar to terrestrial igneous rocks and has undergone igneous processing on a differentiated parent body.[100] Bunburra Rockhole likely came from a differentiated body smaller than 4-Vesta, as this would have resulted in faster cooling and perhaps incomplete differentiation. The differences in oxygen and chromium isotopes and variable trace element compositions relative to the bulk HED measurements are consistent and supportive of this hypothesis. This rock, along with other meteorites close in chemical composition and texture to HED meteorite (HEDs), are evidence that there may have been a large number of differentiated bodies once present in our Solar System, and that the igneous processing and activity on those bodies was rather complex.[98]

Bunburra Rockhole was observed to fall using the Desert Fireball Network observatory in Australia. It was found to have an Aten-type orbit. Upon examination of the rock's recent orbital history, it was found to have been ~ 0.04 AU from Venus in September 2001. Modelling to understand the evolution of the object's orbit revealed a 98% probability that the object came from the inner region of the main asteroid belt.

Panethites[edit | edit source]

Panethite is a rare phosphate mineral that was only found in one meteorite on Earth, the Dayton meteorite in Ohio, classified as H-M symbol (2/m) with space group of P21/n, amber in color.

Chemical formula: (Na,Ca)
2
(Mg,Fe)
2
(PO
4
)
2
.

Panethite is a biaxial negative, pale amber in its color and the estimated 2V was approximated to be 51˚. The refractive indices are α=1.567, β=1.576, γ = 1.579 all ±0.001.[101] Even though panethite lacks the lamellar structure that brianite shows, panethite shows simple twinning. The higher refractive indices along with the lamellae structure of brianite help us to distinguish these two minerals apart under the microscope. The specific gravity of panethite was between 2.90 and 3.0. Both minerals were insoluble in water. Panethite and brianite are the minerals known to have the greatest amount of sodium content in meteorites.[101]

Panguites[edit | edit source]

Panguites have the formula (Ti4+
,Sc,Al,Mg,Zr,Ca)
1.8
O
3

Panguite is a type of titanium oxide mineral first discovered as an inclusion within the Allende meteorite, and first described in 2012.[102][103]

The hitherto unknown meteorite mineral was named for the ancient Chinese god Pan Gu, the creator of the world through the separation of yin (earth) from yang (sky).[102]

The mineral's chemical formula is (Ti4+
,Sc,Al,Mg,Zr,Ca)
1.8
O
3
. The elements found in it are titanium, scandium, aluminium, magnesium, zirconium, calcium, and oxygen. Samples from the meteorite include some which are zirconium rich. The mineral was found in conjunction with the already identified mineral davisite, within an olivine aggregate.[104]

Panguite is in a class of refractory minerals that formed under the high temperatures and extremely varied pressures present in the early Solar System, up to 4.5 billion years ago. This makes panguite one of the oldest minerals in the Solar System. Zirconium is a key element in determining conditions prior to and during the Solar System's formation.[105] The mineral was first described in a paper submitted to the 42nd annual Lunar and Planetary Science Conference in 2011.[106]

Perryites[edit | edit source]

  1. Chemical Formula: (Ni,Fe)
    8
    (Si,P)
    3
    .[107]
  2. Molecular Weight = 550.26 gm.[107]
  3. Empirical Formula: Ni
    6
    Fe2+
    Si
    2.25
    P
    0.75
    .[107]
  4. Environment: Anomalously silicon-rich mesosiderite and enstatite chondrite meteorites, probably formed by exsolution from kamacite.[107]
  5. Locality: Horse Creek and Mount Egerton iron meteorites.[107]

Ringwoodites[edit | edit source]

The mineral Ringwoodite, a high-pressure form of olivine, was first discovered in Tenham meteorites in 1969. Veins of Ringwoodite in this chondrite were produced by shock metamorphism. Large quantities of this mineral are thought to exist in Earth's mantle and the substance was named after the Australian earth scientist Alfred Ringwood.

Stishovites[edit | edit source]

Stishovite is an extremely hard, dense tetragonal polymorph of silicon dioxide. It is very rare on the Earth's surface; however, it may be a predominant form of silicon dioxide in the Earth, especially in the lower mantle.[108]

Until recently, the only known occurrences of stishovite in nature formed at the very high shock pressures (>100 kbar, or 10 GPa) and temperatures (> 1200 °C) present during hypervelocity meteorite impact into quartz-bearing rock. Minute amounts of stishovite have been found within diamonds,[109] and post-stishovite phases were identified within ultra-high-pressure mantle rocks.[110] Stishovite may also be synthesized by duplicating these conditions in the laboratory, either isostatically or through shock (see shocked quartz).[111]

Minute amounts of stishovite has been found within diamonds.[109]

Tephroites[edit | edit source]

"NWA 4047 ordinary chondrite was investigated by micro‐Raman spectroscopy to reveal, identify and characterize minerals. Olivines, orthopyroxenes, clinopyroxene, plagioclase, whitlockite, coesite, tephroite, graphite and diamond have been identified."[112]

Tetrataenites[edit | edit source]

Tetrataenite is an ultra-rare, extraterrestrial iron nickel alloy, found only in meteorites. Credit: Robert M. Lavinsky.{{free media}}

"Tetrataenite is a native metal found in meteorites with the composition FeNi."[113]

It is one of the mineral phases found in meteoric iron.[114][115][116]

Troilites[edit | edit source]

Polished and etched surface of the Mundrabilla meteorite from Australia, where the darker brownish areas with striations are troilite with exolved daubréelite. Credit: Raymond T. Downward, NASA.{{free media}}

Troilite is a rare iron sulfide mineral with the simple formula of FeS. It is the iron-rich endmember of the pyrrhotite group. Pyrrhotite has the formula Fe(1-x)S (x = 0 to 0.2) which is iron deficient. As troilite lacks the iron deficiency which gives pyrrhotite its characteristic magnetism, troilite is non-magnetic.[117]

Troilite can be found as a native mineral on Earth but is more abundant in meteorites, in particular, those originating from the Moon and Mars. It is among the minerals found in samples of the Chelyabinsk meteor (the meteorite that struck Russia in Chelyabinsk on February 15th, 2013).[118] Uniform presence of troilite on the Moon and possibly on Mars has been confirmed by the Apollo, Viking and Phobos space probes. The relative intensities of isotopes of sulfur are rather constant in meteorites as compared to the Earth minerals, and therefore troilite from Canyon Diablo meteorite is chosen as the international sulfur isotope ratio standard, the Canyon Diablo Troilite (CDT).

Troilite has hexagonal structure (Pearson symbol hP24, Space group P-62c No 190). Its unit cell is approximately a combination of two vertically stacked basic NiAs-type cells of pyrrhotite, where the top cell is diagonally shifted.[119] For this reason, troilite is sometimes called pyrrhotite-2C.[120]

A meteorite fall was observed in 1766 at Albareto, Modena, Italy. Samples were collected and studied by Domenico Troili who described the iron sulfide inclusions in the meteorite. These iron sulfides were long considered to be pyrite (i.e., FeS
2
). In 1862, German [mineralogist Gustav Rose analyzed the material and recognizd it as stoichiometric 1:1 FeS andgave it the name troilite in recognition of the work of Domenico Troili.[121][117][122][123]

Troilite has been reported from a variety of meteorites occurring with daubréelite, chromite, sphalerite, graphite, and a variety of phosphate and silicate minerals.[121] It has also been reported from serpentinite in the Alta mine, Del Norte County, California and in layered igneous intrusions in Western Australia, the Ilimaussaq intrusion of southern Greenland, the Bushveld Complex in South Africa and at Nordfjellmark, Norway. In the South African and Australian occurrence it is associated with copper, nickel, platinum iron ore deposits occurring with pyrrhotite, pentlandite, mackinawite, cubanite, valleriite, chalcopyrite and pyrite.[121][124]

Troilite is extremely rarely encountered in the Earth's crust (even pyrrhotite is relatively rare compared to pyrite and Iron(II) sulfate minerals). Most troilite on Earth is of meteoritic origin. One iron meteorite, Mundrabilla contains 25 to 35 volume percent troilite.[125] The most famous troilite-containing meteorite is Canyon Diablo. Canyon Diablo Troilite (CDT) is used as a standard of relative concentration of different isotopes of sulfur.[126] Meteoritic standard was chosen because of the constancy of the sulfur isotopic ratio in meteorites, whereas the sulfur isotopic composition in Earth materials varies due to the bacterial activity. In particular, certain sulfate reducing bacteria can reduce 32
SO2−
4
1.07 times faster than 34
SO2−
4
, which may increase the 34
S
/32
S
ratio by up to 10%.[127]

Troilite is the most common sulfide mineral at the lunar surface. It forms about one percent of the lunar crust and is present in any rock or meteorite originating from moon. In particular, all basalts brought by the Apollo 11, Apollo 12, Apollo 15 and Apollo 16 missions contain about 1% of troilite.[119][128][129][130]

Troilite is regularly found in Martian meteorites, similar to the Moon's surface and meteorites, the fraction of troilite in Martian meteorites is close to 1%.[131][132]

Based on observations by the Voyager spacecraft in 1979 and Galileo in 1996, troilite might also be present in the rocks of Jupiter’s satellites Ganymede and Callisto.[117] Whereas experimental data for Jupiter's moons are yet very limited, the theoretical modeling assumes large percentage of troilite (~22.5%) in the core of those moons.[133]

  1. Category: Sulfide mineral.
  2. Formula: FeS.
  3. System: Hexagonal crystal system.
  4. Class: Ditrigonal dipyramidal (6m2)
    H-M symbol: (6m2).
  5. Symmetry: P62c.
  6. Unit cell: a = 5.958, c = 11.74 [Å]; Z = 12.
  7. Color: Pale gray brown.
  8. Habit: Massive, granular; nodular; platey to tabular.
  9. Cleavage: None.
  10. Fracture: Irregular.
  11. Mohs hardness: 3.5 - 4.0.
  12. Luster: Metallic.
  13. Streak: Gray black.
  14. Diaphaneity: Opaque.
  15. Gravity: 4.67–4.79.
  16. Alteration: Tarnishes on exposure to air.

See also[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Grady, Monica M (31 August 2000). Catalogue of Meteorites. London: Natural History Museum, Cambridge University Press. p. 55. https://books.google.com/books?id=mkdHJR35Q_8C&pg=PA55. Retrieved 30 April 2014. 
  2. StenoMusen 15. Pictures of the pieces.
  3. Abee Enstatite Chondrite
  4. 4.00 4.01 4.02 4.03 4.04 4.05 4.06 4.07 4.08 4.09 4.10 4.11 4.12 4.13 4.14 4.15 4.16 4.17 4.18 4.19 Beckett, John R. and Rossman, George R. = Allendeite (Sc
    4
    Zr
    3
    O
    12
    and hexamolybdenum (Mo, Ru, Fe), two new minerals from an ultrarefractory inclusion from the Allende meteorite
    . American Mineralogist, Volume 99, pages 654-666, 2014. doi:10.2138/am.2014.4667
  5. Marmet. "The Allende Meteorite (Mexico)". Marmet-Meteorites.
  6. Ma, C.; Beckett, J. R.; Rossman, G. R. (2014-04-01). "Allendeite (Sc
    4
    Zr
    3
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