[meteorite-list] West- Blue-Silvery Markings- Thanks and Thoughts

From: Robert Woolard <meteoritefinder_at_meteoritecentral.com>
Date: Wed, 11 Mar 2009 12:04:30 -0700 (PDT)
Message-ID: <978884.92928.qm_at_web39608.mail.mud.yahoo.com>

Hello List, and Rubin,

  First, a big thanks to Michael Johnson for offering to post the photo of my West meteorite with the "markings". I greatly appreciate his help and time.

  Second, another thanks to all who have emailed their thoughts and possible explanations. I appreciate you taking the time to do so, too.

  Third, there seems to be a wide range of theories at this point. It obviously MUST be emphasized that my photo has been the only source for most to base their opinions on, and a not-so-great photo at that, as it is too "washed out" ( the stone is much darker, much more black in real life, with the markings more pronounced and "shiny".)

  I have the permission from the respected meteorite researcher who performed the initial classification for this meteorite fall, Alan Rubin, to pass along a VERY PRELIMINARY supposition to the nature of these markings that he emailed to me. As stated above, he wants to emphasize that he too has only seen the photo, not the actual stone with the streaks in person. Here is what his initial thoughts are:

  "When one looks at a fusion crust of an ordinary chondrite in the microscope, one notices that there are numerous tiny magnetite grains there, formed by oxidation during atmospheric passage. It looks to me as if these silvery streaks are just places where the fusion crust has flaked off revealing the magnetite-rich layer underneath."

  Although this explanation is much more "mundane" and not as exciting as some of the others, it VERY well may be the true explanation. But perhaps it is not, as Rubin was very quick to tell me in a separate email. Once more, he has not seen anything but my poor quality photo and can't be expected to make a definitive statement without first hand observation of the stone, as he himself wished to emphasize.

  Thanks again to all those who have emailed their thoughts.

  Robert Woolard

Received on Wed 11 Mar 2009 03:04:30 PM PDT

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