Meteorite or Meteorwrong
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Thread: Meteorite or Meteorwrong

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  1. #1
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    Meteorite or Meteorwrong

    I found this in Somerset County, Pennsylvania a week or so ago. The surrounding area is Devonian sedimentary, with fossils abounding in the rocks next to the nearby Susquehanna River. A few pieces of granite from eastern NY are present, either brought in by native Americans, or glaciated in as this area was glaciated twice. There were no mines of any kind within 15 miles. There is a small uranium occurrence 15 miles south of where I was. That's about it. No smelters anywhere nearby either. So that's the overall geology of
    the area. The rock sounded off at a 65 on the Deus using Deus fast and 74 khz. I was a few inches down. It is small - 1/4" on its longest axis and is magnetic. There is a black burned crust on it. It is not radioactive. I have only have two guess, a small nickel iron meteorite as it does test positive for nickel OR a piece of the mineral assemblage from Sudbury, Ontario, Canada, a mining area rich in metallic ores, but the likelyhood of it traveling 1,000 miles is not especially good.

    Here are some pics. Specific gravity is high but I suppose the only way to know for sure is to have extensive testing done on it and I don't want to lose it in the mail. We have a new mail person here who is horrid.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    The red and blue raster lines are from the computer screen and are phantoms. This thing is SMALL.
    Last edited by smokeythecat; Jun 22, 2019 at 09:08 AM.
    huntsman53 and Joe-Dirt like this.

  2. #2

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    smokey, please upload photos and size reference.

  3. #3
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    Longest part is 1/4" long.
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  4. #4

    Feb 2006
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    I see no visible characteristics of meteorites.

    Time for more coffee.
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  5. #5
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    But that doesn't help. What is it?
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  6. #6

    Aug 2017
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    Did a Google search for nickel iron meteorite "maryland" and found an article "Meteorite hunters converge on area after fall in Va." appearing in January 22, 2010. In the third paragraph it mentions "a fireball meteor that fell over the Maryland- Pennsylvania state line." Not sure this is in the area where you found your piece. Later in the article it provides a description that sounds similar to the properties you mention: The Channel 9 TV crew took the Lorton meteorite to the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History. Linda Welzenbach, the museum's meteorite curator, said it weighed in at slightly more than two-thirds of a pound. She identified it as a stony "ordinary chondrite." "It's 'ordinary' because 85 to 90 percent of everything that falls is this type," she said. "It has a light gray interior with little, tiny iron, nickel metal particles," all covered by a black fusion crust that melted as the rock entered the atmosphere. If you have a university or natural history museum nearby, you may want to hand-carry it to them and get their ID.
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  7. #7
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    Thanks. It has nickel in it. The nearest nickel mine is almost 1,000 miles away in Canada. There were no homes within a couple miles of this field, I hardly even found a horseshoe there. Comments appreciated. This thing is so tiny, it's not really worth the investment. This was found in the glaciated area on the PA/NY state line where the Susquehanna River crosses the state lines.
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  8. #8
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    I think to test it they have to slice a piece off. It looks pretty cool, and maybe it is a meteorite. Cool find
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  9. #9
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    I use the same program on my Deus everyday and I do dig the occasional 'hot rock'.
    Interesting that it hit in the '65' range, it could very well be a meteorite.

    I was in Sudbury three weeks ago on business... but I haven't been through Somerset County, PA in at least 25 years.
    Dave
    Joe-Dirt likes this.
    “I won't be wronged. I won't be insulted. I won't be laid a-hand on. I don't do these things to other people, and I require the same from them.”
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  10. #10
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    Nick79, Antiquarian, thanks. I can send the whole thing to John Attard in San Diego and get more definitive tests, but that still won't tell whether is terrestrial or not. The presence of nickel is nice, but if there is silver in it, then it's probably from the glaciers that went across there, and all the way from Sudbury. It's still a keeper. The purplish on the tiny piece is possibly erythrite, or just part of a burn crust. I used a 200x digital microscope for some of the pics, and can't do much better in that regard.
    ANTIQUARIAN likes this.

  11. #11
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    Have you watched Meteor Men? I think I've watched every episode, there are a few places they took theirs for testing on those episodes. Might be worth a try

  12. #12
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    Nick79, I haven't seen that show. This thing is so small, 1/4" on it's longest axis, I'll just label it and forget about it. It's always fund to find stuff, and I like the chase! I'll try to catch that show. This rock should not have been on this site, or in that entire county.
    ANTIQUARIAN likes this.

 

 

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