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March 5, 2011 / globalglue

Meteorite or Hematite-encrusted Rock?

Well, the title is a perhaps a little misleading as I’ve already convinced myself that this isn’t a meteorite. More’s the pity!

Anyhow, my father found this unusual stone at the base of a chalk cliff. It looked so odd that my initial reaction was that perhaps it could be a meteorite. It’s metallic, weakly magnetic, has a thin outer crust and is irregular. It’s also heavy – I calculated its specific gravity to be 3.5 g/cm2.

Unfortunately it failed several other tests – primarily the streak test – leaving a vivid orange mark and indicating that it’s hematite. The crust also appears too thick to be a fusion crust. Additionally, whilst it would be heavy enough to be a stony meteorite, the fact that it appears metallic means it falls far short of the density required for an iron meteorite (7-8 g/cm2). I’m sure there are a host of other reasons why it’s not a meteorite, but I still think it’s pretty nifty. A couple more pics here.

Of course, if someone contacts me and states their intention to purchase this incredibly rare, unique, hematite-meteorite for a considerable sum, then I’m all ears.

P.s. I forgot to add an object for scale but it’s around 10cm at its widest point and weighs 950g.

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2 Comments

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  1. Mindy McKinnon / Aug 21 2015 9:11 pm

    No no no, don’t be silly. You need to file off the end, get past the rust, and see what’s inside. The finer you sand it down the better you will understand what it’s made of. Don’t pass it off as just a rock…I’m about to change the way everyone looks at meteorites. I figured it out! I would love to see what it looks like!

    • globalglue / Aug 22 2015 2:27 am

      Hi Mindy, thanks for the comment! I am currently away from home so won’t have a chance to inspect it as you suggest for a little while. I’m curious, what do you expect to see once you’ve sanded it down?

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