Meteorite Times Magazine

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Meteorite Times Magazine Contents Paul Harris

Featured Articles Accretion Desk by Martin Horejsi Jim’s Fragments by Jim Tobin Bob’s Findings by Robert Verish Micro Visions by John Kashuba Norm’s Tektite Teasers by Norm Lehrman IMCA Insights by The IMCA Team Meteorite of the Month by Editor Tektite of the Month by Editor

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Meteorite Times Magazine Oriented Canyon Diablo Meteorite? I hope so. Martin Horejsi

The irons and iron fragments from Canyon Diablo or Meteorite Crater, or Meteor Crater, or Barringer Crater, or Coon Mountain or any of several other names is a staple in every collection. From huge display pieces to micro mounts, Canyon Diablo, or CDs, are important representative of meteorite history, meteorite science, and meteorite collecting.


So as a meteorite collector, I have many specimens of Canyon Diablo from near-microscopic metallic spheroids, to multi-kilo individuals. I have polished specimens, rusty fragments, and beautiful individuals with unique shapes and holes. But one that has peaked my interest lately is a 2.5kg individual that sure looks like it could be oriented. In a nutshell, its triangular with a bulged convex face on one side and a lightly concave face on the other side.


I’ve yet to find any documented reports of oriented individuals of Canyon Diablo, but I have heard that many folks don’t think there are. In addition to looking at hundreds or more likely thousands of CD specimens, three other sources are my go-tos for info on Canyon Diablo. One is a 1972 article simply tiled “The Canyon Diablo Meteorite” by the Soviet scientist Gennady P. Vdovykin.


Another source is Jim Tobin’s book (now in it’s third edition) titled Meteor Crater. Any my final go-to source is, of course, the 1972 edition of Handbook of iron meteorites, their history, distribution, composition, and structure by Vagn F. Buchwald.


So in this installment of The Accretion Desk, I am presenting a series of pictures the highlight the shape of the individual I’m wondering about. Could this be an oriented Canyon Diablo? I’d like to think so, but please comment. Not that consensus will make it so, but I’m certainly curious about what other see in this individual.


Meteorite Times Magazine Before and After Holbrook and Meteor Crater Trip James Tobin

I am heading out to the Holbrook strewnfield in a few days. I missed the hundredth anniversary gathering/hunt and all the yearly ones since. Paul and I did get out there several years ago for a very successful two days of hunting. This year I am going to go to the yearly hunt. When I was working full time it was difficult to take off and to drive the roughly 1300 miles by myself to get to Holbrook and back home. Now that I am retired it is not as hard to go and this year I am excited to see the place again. Of all the places I have hunted meteorites Holbrook is one I have been quite successful at. I know that others have been much more successful but many of them live closer and can visit more often. I have been there on three trips and spent about four days total hunting. I have recovered just about 100 specimens. I have written about those trips before and won’t go over the material again. As I write this I have begun charging camera batteries and started getting my hunting stuff together. Some is still in the pack I used at Gold Basin last November. I won’t use that at Holbrook. I usually just carry a water bottle and my magnet stick at Holbrook. I keep my cellphone and GPS in my pockets. When I find a stone I lay the GPS next to it and take an image put it in a baggie with something written on the outside and move on. I am riding along with Richard Garcia on this trip. Richard and I have hunted together a few times before and it is always fun. It has been a while so I am looking forward to having the chance to catch up. I had just one request when we first planned going. I needed to stop at Meteor Crater to take some images for the new book I am writing. It is about the crater again but just a one year period in the history, so much narrower than the historical books I have written before. Richard said he was planning on stopping himself so that was perfect.

I could not find my travel tripod. It is collapsible and reasonably sturdy. But after several hours of hunting


everywhere I can not find it. So I ordered a new one. I really have never bought a modern tripod. I have some antiques made of wood that I have bought at swap meets but not an aluminum modern one. They have all come as part of camera packages or lenses offers. I decided that since my images are going to be extreme telephoto shots to get one that was pretty sturdy but still portable. I also did not want to break the bank on a tripod. I found a nice one on Amazon that was $100 off regular price and had great reviews for about $90. It also came apart to work as a monopole which is good as I can use the anti shake help sometimes. I have a wonderful 70-300 mm telephoto made by Tamron for my Canons. It is sharp as a tack and good for most everything including my astro imaging, but it was not going to get me across Meteor Crater or to places around the crater I wanted to shoot. The south road is pretty far from the crater slope. I did not think I could get permission to visit those locations in the short lead time I had for this trip so I needed to reach out with telephoto lenses the best I could. I have used mirror lenses before and am well acquainted with the drawbacks that they have. But for price, weight and size they are hard to beat if used with care. The ones on the market today are both good and poor. I did a lot of searching on the net, and reading reviews again. I found one by a manufacturer I have had lens from before. It was very reasonable in price and reported to give a very sharp image at both the 500 mm normal setup and with the 2x tele extender. The sample photos in one of the reviews were very good. I doubt that I will do more than just try the 2x setup. That would be 1000 mm of focal length and an OK field of view if it was a full frame sensor camera. But with my APS sensor and a crop factor of 1.6 it would give me the field of view of a 1600 mm lens. I think that may be too restricted for what I need. But we will see. I will play with it when it arrives and with the tripod. The biggest negative most people have with mirror lenses is the donut shaped out of focus highlights. Anything bright in foreground or behind the point of focus will be a blurry donut. It starts out being a cool effect when you first try a mirror lens but it can quickly become a much less attractive feature. Even an annoying feature at times. I am shooting across Meteor Crater and everything should be at or very near infinity focus in my images. I should have very little depth of field. So no out of focus areas to become donuts. When used this way the lens is very handy to get distant objects at big magnification. The resolution charts in the reviews seems to be good though not as good as a refracting telephoto lens of the same focal length costing 30 times as much or more. You often do get what you pay for but sometimes almost as good is good enough and far less expensive. I am hoping that is what I will find with this mirror lens. I am taking my cellphone macro camera so I can image my Holbrook finds at night in the hotel room. I am taking a scale with me so I can weigh them. I will very likely post images of the finds during the trip. If there are finds of course. I was skunked at Holbrook on my first trip there about 20 years ago. Here is an image of one of my cases of mostly small Holbrook meteorites from the trip in 2012.


I love going to Holbrook and stopping at Meteor Crater on the same trip. It touches two of my favorite parts of meteorite study and collecting. I am really enjoying writing this new book and the images I hope to get will enhance the presentation of the material. And besides it is always great to stop and see The Crater. And it has been way too long for anyone as obsessed with the place as much as me. The new book will be read by a whole 50-100 people like the others but the precious information was crying out to be preserved before it was lost forever. Maybe I will spend a little more effort promoting this book. I have been working on getting one of the others in shape to go up as an ebook and a printed book. It has been only a printed book and actually out of print for a couple years. But I have never really worried much about how many people read my books. I have always had the need to write and I love to write so the books flowed out of that passion. Whether anyone read them was always a lesser issue. This new book has given me the chance to mix some fiction in with my historical writing. I find I love that and may try a total fiction book in the future. I began writing in college with short stories and poetry so fiction is not totally foreign to me. I can spin a pretty good tale when I want. There has to be some twist on alien creatures in meteorites that has not been written before. The Blob vs Predator maybe. . . oh I’ll think of something. The tripod just arrived and I am going to open the box and see what I got and how it works. It is like Christmas in July. The lens is not coming for a few days but I can practice with other telephotos until it does arrive. Got to open the box sorry, bye. As a little side note this month. I started a batch of tektites that were chipped and broken tumbling on June 15th. It had been nearly 40 years since I tumbled any rocks. We bought a tumbler to see how it would go and if we could redeem these tektites since we have thousands of small ones that we are not going to be able to sell unless we fix them up into something beautiful. After a week of coarse grinding, and a week of fine grinding, four days of prepolish grinding, and finally 10 days of polishing the batch was done on July 11. I am really happy with the results so far but may have to do a little study. Some of the tighter cavity areas are still just a little satiny instead of high gloss. I like it but it may not be everyone’s idea of beautiful. It may require that I mix into the final polish a harder media. I used plastic pellets, but may need ceramic polishing media or steel shot. I need to do some research. Here is an image of a sample group of the tektites from the batch.


I am back from the Holbrook hunt and Meteor Crater trip. Rode with Richard Garcia and had a great time. We got out to Holbrook on Thursday evening and were out hunting by 7 am on Friday morning. I stayed on the north side of the tracks most of Friday and found four meteorites. I hunted a couple hours on the south side and found a marble but not space rocks. The largest find for me on Friday was a .509 gram almost complete stone. The other three of Friday’s finds were a .329 gram half stone, a .454 gram complete stone and a .198 gram complete stone. It was hot to say the least. The weather forecast had been for 92 or 93º F but it was well over a hundred still in the afternoon when we drove out by the digital thermometer in Richard jeep. The monsoon thunder showers were approaching and lightning was striking a little ways from us so we left. Robert and Robby Hoover had arrived in the afternoon and stayed to hunt for a while. The clouds and breeze that comes with them do make hunting much more pleasant.


We got back to our hotels and after cool showers and some rest we all got together to tell stories around the patio. Saturday we were back out at the strewnfield early again about 7:30 or so. We hunted on the south side on the eastern end of the strewnfield. We did not have any luck and Richard wanted to go back to the area where he had found the three nice ones the day before. We walked around the old train yard site from the time of the fall and saw a lot of historical junk still lying around on the ground. Then we crossed over the tracks and I asked him to let me out right away. I have had some luck in the past finding stones far to the east on the north side. And I had several hours to make my way to where he would be a mile or so up the dirt road at lunch time. In about a half an hour I found a nice almost ž fusion crusted stone that weighed .366 grams. Then I did not find anything for more than an hour. I got all the way to Sun Valley Rd. and met up with Roy and Cody Miller who were heading into the market nearby to take a cool break from hunting. They saved my life with a Pepsi from their cooler. I had plenty of water with me but it was hot and much less refreshing. I went away from the tracks there into a spot I have had luck in before and about five minutes after the Millers drove off I found a small stone of .166 grams. Richard called me on the walkie and said he wanted to make sure I was alright and was coming back to meet me figuring I needed to resupply on water. I told him I was fine and well over to the west and not too far from his jeep. I said stay out as long as you want I have water and had the soda the Millers had given me. About one minute after getting off the walkie with him I found two very tiny meteorites. One was .059 grams and the other .035 grams. I may not be able to find the most large ones but I can find the most tiny ones. In the next hour I found two more. One was the tiniest of the trip found just walking it was only 10 milligrams a fragment crusted on one side. The other was a larger broken stone that weighed .381 grams. I did some magnetic sampling of the soil in three spots and could see as I bagged the material one chondrule was on the magnet so I picked that off then and put it in a baggie. The rest of the samplings I put into a glass bottle for separation later. So my visual find totals for the two days was 10 meteorites and one chondrule with a combined recovered weight of a whopping 2.534 grams. But they are cute pieces most of them and they are meteorites and I am the first person every to touch them and that is what hunting meteorites is all about.


The other guys did well Robby Hoover found two stones one almost 8 grams and one over 2 grams. Ben Fisler found 9 I think. The were all nice stone from the south side where I can never find them. Roy Miller found two a nice almost 1 gram if I remember right and a small cute pea near where I had gotten the soda from them and found several peas myself. Saturday was hotter than Friday had been. When Richard called and I said “I’m fine not far from your jeep keep hunting.” I really thought that the car ahead of me was his. I was seeing only the back end of it from where I was. As I moved farther west way up away from the tracks where the car was parked I finally got along side it and could see it was Ben’s car. I scanned out along the road far from me to the west and way out there another half mile or more I could see Richard and Roy’s vehicles. I was going to be hot and tired when I got to there. I thought all I had to do was walk down to the tracks from where I was when I got to the car I had been watching. I was not thrilled about the extra walk in the 100+ temperature we had on Saturday. But I took my time and I still had a couple water bottles with me. I was just walking up to Richard’s jeep as he was arriving so I was able to get cold water from the cooler and did not have to drink the safety bottle on the tailgate of the jeep. Meteorite hunting always an adventure. We were all safe and no one got skunked. It was a great hunt but honestly not as pleasant a time at Holbrook as hunting in mid October as Paul and I have done. Sonny and Georgia Clary and Brix were passing through the area and stopped at the hotel for patio beer and soda time with us in the evening. Richard Garcia took this nice picture of our small group. Robert Hoover is missing from the shot but was out with us for hunting both days.


Richard and I headed home early Sunday morning. We were going to stop by Meteor Crater. I wanted to get some images with telephoto lenses of some parts of the crater. I have a few old film pictures but not the images I needed for this new book I am in the middle of writing. It took me an hour and a half I guess to do the photography and some time to get in and out. We went around the back side down Chavez Pass Rd and I got some shots of the west side and south slope and the no trespassing signs. Richard took some images too. We stopped at the barrier across old Route 66 that prevents you from going to Nininger’s old tower ruin. They have even closed the barbed wire fence in close on the side of the barrier now so you can not go around it and put up no trespassing signs there as well. I think there is just something wrong with keeping American citizens from having access to walking on historical portions of Route 66 which is still there I might add at the barrier.


We had a great ride home though long because of a detour off of I-40 for construction. It was a good trip, with good company and I found some meteorites.


Meteorite Times Magazine Takysie Lake – The Classic “Pseudometeorite” – Found By Harvey H. Nininger – Still a Mystery? Robert Verish

Takysie Lake – The Classic “Pseudometeorite” – Found By Harvey H. Nininger – Still a Mystery?

The first time I saw a specimen of Takysie Lake was 16 years ago (in 2000). I had purchased a small stone from an old collector from San Diego. He explained that it was self-collected in 1991 from the “strewn-field” as described by Nininger (and Gary I. Huss) in their 1967 paper “The Takysie Lake, B. C., Stones: Meteorites or Moon Rock?” Although this specimen wasn’t actually handled by Harvey Nininger, I was still intrigued by this stone. It was clear to me that this stone was a volcanic breccia (exactly as Nininger and Huss had described), but it wasn’t obvious to me why Harvey was so convinced that this was a meteorite. So, I took it upon myself to dig deeper into the history of this Nininger find and how it came to be classified as a “pseudometeorite”. The first place I turned to was the on-line Database for the Meteoritical Bulletin (MBD), published by the Meteoritical Society, and searched for the entry for “Takysie Lake“. The first thing I noticed was the word “Pseudo” under the column for “Status”. The MBD defines “Pseudo” as, “indicates that the name refers to an object that has been proven NOT to be a meteorite”. But here lies the problem. There was no reference as to how it was “proven to be NOT a meteorite”. The only reference given was the original Nininger& Huss 1967 paper. That same MBD entry used the word “Pseudometeorite” under the column “Type” (or classification). The MBD defines “Pseudometeorite” as, “the recommended classification for an object that has been claimed to be a meteorite, but which is non-meteoritic in origin.” Apparently, Pseudometeorites are “meteor-wrongs” (although that term is not officially-recognized in the MBD). But, not all meteor-wrongs are Pseudometeorites. It appears that Pseudometeorites are a special class of meteor-wrongs. So special that they required actual analysis to be proven that they are NOT (as


they were claimed to be) a meteorite. There are only seventy (70) formally-recognized Pseudometeorites in the MBD. As it turned-out, there wasn’t a lot in the literature about the Takysie Lake stones outside of what was written by Huss and by Nininger. So, let’s turn to the 1967 paper that first introduced these stones to meteoriticists. Here are the author’s exact words: [Reproduced from: Meteoritics, Vol 3-4, pg169, 1967] The Takysie Lake stones were found on glacial deposits in British Columbia. They contained neither nickel nor chondrules but they did bear a true fusion crust. Their only other claims to meteoritic origin were 1) their total lack of resemblance to the glacial deposit on which they were found, 2) their evidence of rapid weathering where the fusion crust had been broken, 3) their limited distribution which was consistent with that of known aerolite showers, and 4) all of the 55 recovered stoned were of irregular form, without sharp edges or corners, yet bearing no evidence of the abrasive shaping common to the glacial conglomeration of materials with which they were associated. Soon after being published, questions were raised about each of the above four (4) “claims”: 1) Yes, the stones did not resemble any of the clasts in the till of the underlying glacial deposits, but how similar were these “erratic” stones to the local outcrops of andesitic rock? 2) Yes, the evidence of rapid weathering is dependent upon the age of the fusion crust, but exactly how old is the fusion crust? The fusion crust was subsequently found to be devitrified to palagonite. How long does it take for fusion crust to devitrify? 3) Yes, the distribution of the stones was VERY limited. In fact, the map of the finds shows a distribution that was limited closely to disturbed surfaces, such as areas close to roads, cleared fields, and other developed areas. As is the case with strewn-fields, there are always the same questions: How were the limits of distribution determined, and how many man-hours of searching were spent in this determination? And finally, 4) Yes, the stones are of irregular form. Most have smooth, rounded corners. But, are there any other possible mechanisms which will “round the corners” of clasts, however rare, other than falling from space? How about the possibility of the rocks falling out of a hot cloud of ash that had erupted from a nearby volcanic (andesitic) vent? Extremely hot, pyroclastic flows known as, “nuées ardentes”, have been known to travel 7 km and to melt the exteriors of solid rock. Could these rocks have been picked-up by the gravityflow and then deposited (dropped) onto glaciers, where they were preserved in ice for millennia, devitrifying their glass-coating, and eventually, gently melting out onto the top of the glacial deposits? Movement while the glacial ice melted could be an explanation for the dense accumulation of the stones. Couldn’t there be other possibilities? Or, is the “meteoritic origin” the best explanation? The point is that for the next ten years nothing was published to resolve these questions. That is, until in 1977, Gary Huss made the last published reference (in passing) to the Takysie Lake stones in his paper titled, “Significance of the Yamato meteorites“. Here are his exact words: [Reproduced from: Meteoritics, Vol 12, pg141, June 30, 1977] ” When one first begins to work with meteorites he learns that they have black fusion crusts when they fall. He learns that the stones contain nickel-iron metal which rusts after an indeterminate number of years and helps to turn the crust from black to brown. He learns that after X number of years the stony meteorite cracks, is invaded by water, and falls into crumbs, which become part of the soil. One learns these truths and feels competent to deal with most field problems. But what one has learned to this point is not the whole story. Many meteorites lose their crust long before they crack and fall apart. Some meteorites, such as the larger pieces of Paragould, have little or no crust when they land on the earth. Some have very little nickel- iron metal. Several are known that had NO nickel-iron metal when they fell. Their crusts were not black but were either grey or straw-colored. That these meteorites were seen to fall is fortunate. What they would have looked like after fifty years in the soil, no one knows.


In the course of field work, some brown-stained stones are found that contain grains of iron without nickel . Some stones are found which are apparently granite, or some other identifiable rock form, that are enclosed in an apparently melted crust. The prime example of this is the Takysie Lake, British Columbia, Canada, stones which have a glassy crust, are scattered over a glacial moraine in the manner of meteoritic distribution, and which show evidence of rather rapid decay wherever the crust has been detached. They contain no nickel-iron, are made of an agglomeration of glassy material containing small crystallites mixed with fragments of crystals, reminiscent of the appearance of a basaltic tuff. Most of the glass does not seem devitrified, which indicates that the formation took place in air rather than in water and that the material is of fairly recent age. The glassy crust is composed of an inhomogeneous mixture of two silicates common to the stones. There is an almost complete lack of radiogenic nuclides, which indicates that the stones had a short space history, if any, and that they may in fact have been buried until recently (Nininger and Huss 1967). “ The point that Huss was making, was that we should be prepared to expect the unexpected. And that the recovery data from the Yamato (Antarctic) meteorites, having had a long terrestrial residence in the ice, might tell us something about meteorites that we were otherwise missing. That was written 40 years ago. Would you agree that time has proven him right? Well, two Antarctic meteorites found in 2006 certainly could qualify: GRA 06128 and GRA 06129 (Achondrite-ung) — are uniquely different from “any known achondrite, including those of planetary origin”. The composition of these two meteorites shows that an andesite-like melt can form from an undifferentiated parent body. And although these stones were protected from weathering while residing in Antarctic ice, their interior were “very weathered, to a rusty or yellow-ocher color”, similar to the Takysie Lake stones. But the bad news is that, even though their interiors were badly weathered, the fusion-crust was still black and glassy, unlike the devitrified exteriors of the Takysie Lake stones.


Takysie Lake stone #TL29 found in 1991. There is a subtle hint of flow-lipping along the upper edge.


Close-up of a portion of a weathered surface on the #TL29-stone depicted above. Can’t tell whether there is soil-clay encruste fusion-crust.

Now getting back to that specimen of Takysie Lake that I purchased, as fate would have it, I soon discovered that there were other collectors of Takysie Lake specimens with the same curiosity and questions about these stones. From: “Darryl S. Futrell” <futrelds@gte.net> To: <meteorite-list@meteoritecentral.com>


Date: Tue, 16 Jan 2001 02:16:42 -0800 Subject: [meteorite-list] Takysie Lake Back in 1968 I traded for a 10 gram slice of Takysie Lake, BC, Canada. It had been written up in the Dec. 1967 issue of Meteoritics by Nininger, Huss, or both. They weren’t sure if the many stones Nininger or both found were meteoritic or not, but Nininger was convinced they all had fusion crusts. It was suggested that they might be lunar, which aroused my curiosity. My slice doesn’t look like anything lunar to me, but then, I haven’t seen a full variety of Apollo rock types. My slice has a light brownish stain for a crust. If it originally had more of a fusion crust, buy it didn’t survive the slicing. I never heard another word about it, except that some tests had been inconclusive. Has anyone ever heard of these Takysie Lake stones and what they turned out to be? Darryl After Darryl Futrell wrote that post, I had the pleasure of meeting with him and got to examine his specimen. We made plans to have our specimens included in a study with two other Arizona researchers who had expressed an interest in analyzing all available Takysie Lake stones. But, before the study “got off the ground”, Darryl passed away. The researchers started getting inundated with much more interesting NWA meteorites, and as history shows, science has never found the time to revisit North American pseudometeorites.


This rounded stone is Specimen #53005 (collected in 1991), showing patches of crust, as well as, patches of carbonate encrus We flash-forward to the present, and the ” old collector ” who sold to me the small Takysie Lake stone, is now our neighbor. He is older now, of course, and he is attempting to disperse his collection, but is shy about making transactions with strangers. Unfortunately, navigating the Internet poses problems for him, so that is not an option. I’ve offered to help him, pro bono, in any way that I can. One of the first things I helped him with was going through all of his stuff that he had in storage. One of the boxes that we pulled out of the storage bin had a shipping label from “Rocks of Ages – Tustin, CA”. Inside the box were road maps and travel brochures for British Columbia, Canada. At the bottom of the box were some rocks that were well-wrapped with padding. I was curious, so I asked about the rocks. He said, “Oh


yeah, those are what’s left of the Takysie Lake stones that I collected in 1991.”! Wow! A collection of Takysie Lake Pseudometeorite stones that have been sitting in storage for over 16 years! What a surprise find after all these years. He wasn’t impressed, but I was intrigued. I insisted that we take them back with us and inspect them at our leisure. Under closer examination, it was obvious these were his best specimens.

This rounded stone is Specimen #53005 (collected in 1991), and shows patches of crust.


Close-up of the curious “crust” on the #53005 stone depicted above.


Close-up of the interior as shown on a broken surface of the #53005 stone depicted above.


This stone with rounded corners is Specimen #TL54 (collected in 1991), and is covered in a crust of palagonite-clay.


This is another view of the “Fusion-crusted� Takysie Lake stone #53002 (which was recovered in 1991).


“Click” on image above to see a close-up of the “fusion-crust”.

Now that I have seen these additional specimens from my neighbor’s collection, I am even more intrigued by the Takysie Lake story. I have to say that I am even more uncertain about the origin of these stones. Given what we have already learned (and are continuing to learn) about the Moon, as well as Mars, and about the parent bodies for Ungrouped Achondrites, I feel that it is time to take a closer look at these old Nininger finds. References: Pseudometeorite : from the Meteoritical Bulletin: the Definition for this class of “meteorite”. Search results for all “meteorites” of type: “Pseudometeorite” – Published in Meteoritical Society – Meteoritical Bulletin, Database. Takysie Lake from the Meteoritical Bulletin: the entry for “Takysie Lake” – as Published in Meteoritical Society – Meteoritical Bulletin, Database. From the SAO/NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS): The Takysie Lake, B. C., Stones: Meteorites or Moon Rock? by authors: H. H. Nininger, & Gary I. Huss, 1967, The Meteoritical Society,


in journal: Meteoritics, volume 3, number 4, page 169. Bibliographic Code: 1967Metic…3..169N

Figure 4. from the above paper showing a slice from one of the original Nininger stones. This interior is typical for most of these stones, exhibiting a thin, patchy devitrified crust on a wellrounded clast of volcanic breccia.

From the SAO/NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS): Significance of the Yamato meteorites by author: Gary I. Huss, 1977 in journal: Meteoritics, vol. 12, June 30, 1977, p. 1 41-144. Bibliographic Code: 1977Metic..12..141H From the Clay Minerals Society: Palagonite reconsidered: paracrystalline illite-smectites from regoliths … a [PDF] from their official website – by V. Berkgaut and A. Singer – ​1994 With technological advancements in clay analysis providing a better way to identify clay minerals, researchers revisited previous work, such as the “palagonitic” clay from the Golan Heights, and found most of them to be illite-smectites from regoliths … Nuées Ardentes of the 1968 Eruption of Mayon Volcano, Philippines … The nuées ardentes deposited pyroclastic flows that contained large breadcrust-surfaced blocks averaging about 30 cm across, but occasionally reaching 25 m in greatest dimension. These blocks were still very hot in their interiors several days later. My previous Bob’s Bulletins can be found *HERE* If you would like more information about Takysie Lake and other Pseudo Meteorites, then “Click” HERE.

bolidechaser at yahoo-dot-com


Meteorite Times Magazine SaU 008 Martian shergottite John Kashuba

Sayh al Uhaymir 008 is one of the several pairings with SaU 005. These pairings have a total weigh of about 25 pounds. It is a Martian basaltic shergottite of a type sometimes called olivine-phyric. It is composed of olivine megacrysts in a finer grained groundmass of pigeonite and plagioclase. In these cross-polarized light (XPL) photos the large olivine crystals are brightly colored. The pigeonite, a pyroxene, shows bands of color representing shock induced twinning. Here, the plagioclase, a feldspar, has been shocked to the glass-like form called maskelynite and appears black in XPL. Note that opaque minerals and voids also appear black. Other shock features are melt pockets and attendant vacuoles. Often melt cools very fast to a glass as obsidian does in some volcanic situations. In one pocket in this thin section the melt had time to crystallize into fine, fernlike forms.

Overview. Sample is 18mm long maximum dimension corner to corner. Thin section, cross-polarized light (XPL). SaU 008 Martian shergottite.


Olivine megacrysts in a finer grained groundmass of pigeonite and plagioclase. FOV = 3mm wide, XPL. SaU 008 Martian shergottite.


Olivine megacrysts in a finer grained groundmass of pigeonite and plagioclase. XPL. SaU 008 Martian shergottite.


Olivine megacryst in a finer grained groundmass of pigeonite and plagioclase. Note the oval opaque spot with fine radiating cracks above center. FOV = 3mm wide, XPL. SaU 008 Martian shergottite.


Spot with fine radiating cracks in large olivine crystal. FOV = 0.5mm wide, XPL. SaU 008 Martian shergottite.



Melt pocket with brownish recrystallized melt, black glassy solidified melt and oval void at top right, a vacuole. XPL. SaU 008 Martian shergottite.


Fernlike recrystallized melt. FOV = 0.4mm wide, XPL. SaU 008 Martian shergottite.

Thin section. SaU 008 Martian shergottite.


Meteorite Times Magazine Two splatted teardrops—Norm Lehrman

I hope that this will not disappoint you, but we will not here debate just what they splatted on, but it was either against a cushion of speed-related compressed air or the earth’s surface. That they “splatted” is clear. These were once highly liquid blobs of glass shaped as classic teardrops that impacted, in this case, side-first. We found these in our first tektite shipment.

We have since examined over a million tektites. These remain the best of their type, without serious challengers. This is a story about why these are some of the best side-splatted teardrop tektites known. When we were first getting started with tektites over 20 years ago, they were merely interesting geological curiosities about which we knew very little. As we got into the tektite literature, we found a rich debate, full of questions and conundrums and paradoxes that has been puzzling serious scholars for over a hundred years. In a 1966 article, tektites were described as “…probably the most frustrating stones ever found on Earth.” While theoretical aspects may be contentious, it is not for lack of knowledge of a descriptive character. Consider the remarkable geographic variations in the singular Australasian strewn field: • At the distal region are the amazing Australites, with ablated flight forms, flanged buttons, cores, patellates and more, (and if we consider even more distal, there are microtektites of this age in Antarctic ice). Moving northwards, towards the still uncertain impact site, there are: • Philippinites, with big bald spheroids to over a kilo, peculiar bread-crust soccer balls, ornate crescentic bikolites, and weirdly marked Andas that look as if chewed by a rodent, • then over into Java, Borneo, Billiton, and Malaysia to the amazing enamel-glossed Agni Mani firepearls, • then northwards into Thailand, Laos, and Vietnam, where ornate splashforms and splatforms fell in profusion. Strange blobs of tektite “foam” termed Muong Nongs are found intermixed throughout the SE Asian region, but reach their largest sizes in Laos. • Finally, in the Guang Dong province of southern China, there (once upon a time) was an abundance of very large splashforms (and tonnes of small fragments). These are the Lei Gong Mo, “black ink-pens hurled from the sky by the god of thunder” over 800,000 years ago (and were the first tektite described in writing. This dates to the Tang Dynasty in 950 AD).


Our first big business purchase of tektites involved upwards of a quarter million pieces from the Khorat Plateau of NE Thailand. We were just getting interested in tektites, and the purchase opportunity was something of a fire-sale. We had to buy all or none from an importer that lost his lease on his warehouse and wanted to liquidate. We spent months cleaning and sorting and learning about the range of Thai tektite morphologies one by one. We found the two featured this month. There follows a lot of history during which we sorted, one-by-one, through hundreds of thousands of tektites. Whenever opportunity presented itself, we upgraded our personal collection, but the original sidesplatted teardrop Thailandites remain in our living-room cabinet, never having met their better.

Why? Right place, right time. It doesn’t happen often, but it’s nice to catch the wave when it happens. The level of our entry point into the tektite world was quite accidental. But without understanding, the first and greatest single tektite purchase of our history was sourced from the region containing the greatest morphological diversity of splashforms and splatforms in the Australasian strewnfield, most of which were unbroken complete individuals. We did not know we were looking at the best we might ever see, but we picked out the best that we did see from that lot and reserved it. There is also an element of timing. During that period, there was a strong demand for tektites amongst the lapidary/gemstone factories of Thailand, so a lot of locals were supplementing their incomes with tektites. This opened the supply-side for the specimen trade, and tektites moved around the world in sea-container lots. At the big Tucson show, it was common for sellers to have big wooden crates of tektites. I remember buying in bulk at $12/kg! (Now, the world supply seems largely exhausted. We have always tried to stock bulk tektites for teachers and nature shops and such like, but for the last two years, not a single dealer was offering such material. Our favorite Chinese supplier says that they are all gone. The source areas have been depleted.) I have taken you on this long journey to provide perspective about the specimen quality of the two splatted teardrops featured in this article. They were part of the cream skimmed from the rich rivers of tektites that were flowing in the closing decades of the 1900s. These splatted teardrops were the best of hundreds of thousands from the best region on earth for diverse splashforms, (and particularly, amazing splatforms). At the time when there were immense numbers from which one might select, we picked the very best. These are part of that select group. Because of their former abundance where they were literally a bulk commodity sold by the kilo, the Australasian Indochinites are widely viewed as “common”, and not worthy of the attention of serious collectors of quality specimens. There was a time that you could count on finding something better next year, which had the effect of dampening the use of superlatives like “the biggest” or “the best”. This changes in hindsight. When the race is over, you can start to objectively evaluate the runners. That Indochinites were recovered by the tonne is not in doubt, and, indeed, the majority of that material may fairly be termed “common”. But this abundance also made possible extremes of quality. Would you prefer


the best of 100 or the best of 100 million? With hindsight that saw the boom and now, the clear decline, I can say, with a measure of authority, these side-splatted teardrops are worthy of your appreciation. They are amongst the best that will ever be found. Common Indochinites? Yea. But these? Common? No, not these.


Meteorite Times Magazine The Great Family Reunion Also Known As The Ensisheim Show Anne Black

Photo by Laurent Jaworski Yes, the Ensisheim-Meteorite Show has the feel of a family reunion. We all meet there in this friendly old Alsatian town once a year, we celebrate the new deserving members of the family, we learn about the new accomplishments of various members, and we chat until late in the night over Alsatian tart, Meteor beer and Rhine wine. Friday around 6pm, after setting up all the displays upstairs in the Palais de la RĂŠgence, we all assembled on the square, near the church where the Ensisheim Meteorite had been kept in chains for so long, ready for the opening ceremony, a few speeches and the traditional celebratory glass of local wine.

Photo by Hanno Struffe This year the deserving members were, from left to right around Zelimir Gabelica (with hat), the organizer of the show:


Photo by Hanno Struffe Graham Ensor, UK; Dieter Heinlein, Germany; Andre Besson, Tahiti; Francois Sarti, Madagascar. Congratulations to all. But the star of the show appeared a bit later (his plane was late):

Photo by Hanno Struffe Tony Irving, from the University of Washington, a famous meteoriticist and a very welcome visitor. Just in time for a glass of wine. The show opened to the public at large the next morning. It was well-attended and there was a lot to look at as the tables were overloaded with meteorites from all corners of the planet:


Photo by Mauro Ianeselli The Swiss team, Marc Jost, Andreas Koppel, and Peter Marmet, was celebrating and presenting specimens of the Twannberg meteorite that they finally found after years of searching. It is a rare IIG iron, one of only 6 known IIG, and soon to be the star of its own exhibit in Switzerland.

Photo courtesy of Twannbergmeteorit.ch Another feature of the Ensisheim-Meteorite Show is the very special exhibit that Zelimir Gabelica always plans for us, and this year it was particularly special. He convinced Alain Carion, the well-known French mineral and meteorite dealer, to show a portion of his own, private collection of meteorites.


Alain Carion has been a fixture in the world of meteorites for a great many years and along the way has collected some remarkable specimens worthy of a world-class museum. Additionally he has always been very careful and eager to collect a great deal of documentation telling the story of his specimens. About 30 specimens were on display in the museum on the ground floor of the Palais de la Régence, representing more than two centuries of French meteorite history, from Barbotan, fallen in 1790, to Plancy-l’Abbaye, found in 2003.

Photo © Franz Guichet Barbotan, 143.60g, and Plancy-l’Abbaye, 93.50g (probably the main mass)

Photo by Hanno Struffe


Photos by Hanno Struffe The most striking was probably the complete crusted individual of L’Aigle, 194.4g of it, proudly presented on Jean-Baptiste Biot historical Report as published by : “Beaudoin, Imprimeur de l’Institut National” and the Date of publication is right on the front page: Thermidor An XI. Translation: July/August of the year 1803 of the calendar of the French Revolution.


Photo Š Franz Guichet And then of course there was Chassigny, 0.60g.


Photo © Franz Guichet And Salles, fallen on March 12 1798, with a manuscript describing the fall, 65g.

Photo by Hanno Struffe And Orgueil, some fragments in a glass vial, 7.20g

Photo © Franz Guichet and Vouillé, fallen in 1831, 20.8g, next to Bacqueville, found in 1999, 5g


Photo by Martin Goff. And a Bouvante fragment with great crust, 211.2g. Too bad there was no room for the letter of the garde champĂŠtre who found it and wrote to Alain Carion describing his discovery.

Photo Š Franz Guichet And a slice of La Caille, 106.5g, the huge iron meteorite that had been used as a bench by the local people until it was identified as a meteorite and promptly moved to the Paris Museum.


Photo by Martin Goff Thank you, Zelimir, and the city of Ensisheim for a perfectly enjoyable show. I am already looking forward to Ensisheim 2017. (I have already reserved my table for the show and my room at the Domaine du Moulin!) Anne M. Black


Photo by Mauro Ianeselli


Meteorite Times Magazine SPACE ROCKS MAGAZINE Paul Harris

After much thought I have decided to publish a new quarterly magazine about hunting, collecting, and the science of rocks from outer space. I will not be accepting yearly subscription payments, only payments as each individual issue is published and ready to mail out to the subscribers. If you have any questions please send me a private message or contact me using the email listed below. Your support is what will make this magazine a success for us all in the meteorite community. Regards, Michael Johnson Editor-in-Chief, Space Rocks Magazine

May 2016 issue of SPACE ROCKS MAGAZINE Click Magazine To Purchase

Please submit your article with photos to: spacerocksmagazine@gmail.com


Meteorite Times Magazine Canyon Diablo Meteorite 1979 grams Paul Harris

Our Meteorite of the Month is kindly provided by Tucson Meteorites who hosts The Meteorite Picture of the Day.

Contributed by Edwin Thompson. Edwin writes: This is a gorgeous example of a classic, door stop Canyon Diablo iron. It was purchased from The American Meteorite Laboratory, Denver, Co., on June 14th, 1966. With just a few hundred years less rusting it would have still had one of the classic wormholes that many of the largest masses display. The purchase price for this specimen #34.6046 in 1966 was $58.45. In 1966 I made $3.00 a day for 18 holes of golf as a caddy. Submit Pictures to Meteorite Pictures of the Day


Meteorite Times Magazine Meteorite-Times Sponsors by Editor Please support Meteorite-Times by visiting our sponsors websites. Click the bottom of the banners to open their website in a new tab / window.

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Once a few decades ago this opening was a framed window in the wall of H. H. Nininger's Home and Museum building. From this window he must have many times pondered the mysteries of Meteor Crater seen in the distance. Photo by Š 2010 James Tobin