Meteoritics & Planetary Science is an international monthly journal of the Meteoritical Society—a scholarly organization promoting research and education in planetary science. Topics include the origin and history of the solar system, planets and natural satellites, interplanetary dust and interstellar medium, lunar samples, meteors and meteorites, asteroids, comets, craters, and tektites.

Meteoritics & Planetary Science was first published in 1935 under the title Contributions of the Society for Research on Meteorites. In 1947, the publication became known as Contributions of the Meteoritical Society and continued through 1951. From 1953 to 1995, the publication was known as Meteoritics, and in 1996, the journal's name was changed to Meteoritics & Planetary Science or MAPS. The journal was not published in 1952 and from 1957 to 1964.

This archive provides access to Meteoritics & Planetary Science Volumes 37-44 (2002-2009).

Visit Wiley Online Library for new and retrospective Meteoritics & Planetary Science content (1935-present).

ISSN: 1086-9379


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Recent Submissions

  • 3He, 20,21,22Ne, 14C, 10Be, 26Al, and 36Cl in magnetic fractions

    Jull, A. J. T.; Lal, D.; Taylor, S.; Wieler, R.; Grimberg, A.; Vacher, L.; McHargue, L. R.; Freeman, S. P. H. T.; Maden, C.; Schnabel, C.; et al. (The Meteoritical Society, 2007-01-01)
    We report on studies of the concentrations of cosmogenic nuclides in the magnetic fraction of cosmic dust particles recovered from the South Pole Water Well (SPWW) and from Greenland. Our results confirm that cosmic dust material from these locations contains measurable amounts of cosmogenic nuclides.The Antarctic particles (and possibly those from Greenland as well) also contain minor amounts of solar Ne. Concentrations of cosmogenic nuclides are consistent with irradiation of this material as small objects in space, with exposure ages similar to the expected Poynting-Robertson (P-R) lifetimes of 50-200 kyr for particles 25-100 micrometers in size.
  • Traces of an H chondrite in the impact-melt rocks from the Lappajärvi impact structure, Finland

    Tagle, R.; Öhman, T.; Schmitt, R. T.; Erzinger, J.; Claeys, Ph. (The Meteoritical Society, 2007-01-01)
    Here we present the results of a geochemical study of the projectile component in impact melt rocks from the Lappajrvi impact structure, Finland. Main- and trace-element analyses, including platinum group elements (PGEs), were carried out on twenty impact-melt rock samples from different locations and on two shocked granite fragments. The results clearly illustrate that all the impact melt rocks are contaminated with an extraterrestrial component. An identification of the projectile type was performed by determining the projectile elemental ratios and comparing the corresponding element ratios in chondrites. The projectile elemental ratios suggest an H chondrite as the most likely projectile type for the Lappajrvi impact structure. The PGE composition of the highly diluted projectile component (~0.05 and 0.7 wt% in the impact-melt rocks) is similar to the recent meteorite population of H chondrites reaching Earth. The relative abundance of ordinary chondrites, including H, L, and LL chondrites, as projectiles at terrestrial impact structures is most likely related to the position of their parent bodies relative to the main resonance positions. This relative abundance of ordinary chondrites suggests a strong bias of the impactor population toward inner Main Belt objects.
  • The formation of eucrites: Constraints from metal-silicate partition coefficients

    Holzheid, A.; Palme, H. (The Meteoritical Society, 2007-01-01)
    This study explores the controls of oxygen fugacity and temperature on the solubilities of Fe, Ni, Co, Mo, and W in natural eucritic liquids to better constrain the formation of eucritic melts. The solubilities of all five elements in molten silicate in equilibrium with FeNiCo-, FeMo-, and FeWalloys increase with increasingly oxidizing conditions and decrease with decreasing temperatures. In applying these data to formation scenarios of the eucrite parent body, we find that the siderophile element abundances in eucrites (meteoritic basalts) cannot be explained by a single-step partialmelting process from a chondritic, metal-containing source. The Ni content of the partial melt is too high, and the W and Mo contents are too low compared to the abundances in eucritic meteorites. But Fe, Ni, and Co concentrations in eucrites can be modeled by metal-silicate equilibrium during more or less complete melting of the eucrite parent body with subsequent fractional crystallization of olivine and orthopyroxene. However, the computed values of Mo are still too low and those of W too high when compared with Mo and W abundances in eucritic meteorites. One possibility is that the Mo and W partition coefficients strongly depend on pressure, although the howardite-eucrite-diogenite (HED) parent body only had a minimal pressure gradient (maximum interior pressure = 0.1 GPa). Alternatively, sulfides may have played some role in establishing Mo abundances.
  • Petrographic classification of Middle Ordovician fossil meteorites from Sweden

    Bridges, J. C.; Schmitz, B.; Hutchison, R.; Greenwood, R. C.; Tassinari, M.; Franchi, I. A. (The Meteoritical Society, 2007-01-01)
    The maximum diameter of chromite (FeCr2O4) grains within L chondrites reflects the petrographic type of the sample. On the basis of our measurements of nine recent L chondrites, L3 chromite Dmax = 34-50 micrometers, L4 = 87-150 micrometers, L5 = 76-158 micrometers, and L6 = 253-638 micrometers. This variation reflects the crystallization of the chromite grains during parent body thermal metamorphism.We use this calibration to classify six fossil meteorites from the Middle Ordovician in Sweden as type 3 (or 4) to 6. The high flux of L chondrites at 470 Ma contained a range of petrographic types and may have had a higher proportion of lower petrographic type meteorites than are found in recent L chondrite falls. The fossil meteorites have in places preserved recognizable chondrule textures, including porphyritic olivine, barred olivine, and radiating pyroxene. A large relict clast and fusion crust have also been tentatively identified in one fossil meteorite. Apart from chromite, all of the original meteorite minerals have been replaced by carbonate (and sheet silicate and sulfate) during diagenesis within the limestone host. The preservation of chondrule definition has allowed us to measure the mean diameters of relict chondrules. The range (0.4-0.6 mm) is consistent with measurements made in the same way on recent L chondrites.
  • Mineralogy, petrology, and shock history of lunar meteorite Sayh al Uhaymir 300: A crystalline impact-melt breccia

    Hudgins, J. A.; Walton, E. L.; Spray, J. G. (The Meteoritical Society, 2007-01-01)
    Sayh al Uhaymir (SaU) 300 comprises a microcrystalline igneous matrix (grain size 10 m), dominated by plagioclase, pyroxene, and olivine. Pyroxene geothermometry indicates that the matrix crystallized at ~1100 degrees C. The matrix encloses mineral and lithic clasts that record the effects of variable levels of shock. Mineral clasts include plagioclase, low- and high-Ca pyroxene, pigeonite, and olivine. Minor amounts of ilmenite, FeNi metal, chromite, and a silica phase are also present. A variety of lithic clast types are observed, including glassy impact melts, impact-melt breccias, and metamorphosed impact melts. One clast of granulitic breccia was also noted. A lunar origin for SaU 300 is supported by the composition of the plagioclase (average An95), the high Cr content in olivine, the lack of hydrous phases, and the Fe/Mn ratio of mafic minerals. Both matrix and clasts have been locally overprinted by shock veins and melt pockets. SaU 300 has previously been described as an anorthositic regolith breccia with basaltic components and a granulitic matrix, but we here interpret it to be a polymict crystalline impact-melt breccia with an olivine-rich anorthositic norite bulk composition. The varying shock states of the mineral and lithic clasts suggest that they were shocked to between 5-28 GPa (shock stages S1-S2) by impact events in target rocks prior to their inclusion in the matrix. Formation of the igneous matrix requires a minimum shock pressure of 60 GPa (shock stage >S4). The association of maskelynite with melt pockets and shock veins indicates a subsequent, local 28-45 GPa (shock stage S2-S3) excursion, which was probably responsible for lofting the sample from the lunar surface. Subsequent fracturing is attributed to atmospheric entry and probable breakup of the parent meteor.
  • Local topographic effects on photometry and reflectance spectra of planetary surfaces: An example based on lunar photometry

    Domingue, D.; Vilas, F. (The Meteoritical Society, 2007-01-01)
    The photometric properties of the average lunar surface are characterized using Hapkes equations and whole disk observations ranging from 0.36 to 1.06 micrometers. Synthetic spectra across a crater topographic profile arecreated using the modeling results. The synthetic spectra are examined for spectral variations created by changes in lighting conditions induced by the topography. Changes above the modeling uncertainties are seen in both spectral slope and band depths, though the most pronounced change is in band depth. The data have insufficient spectral resolution to determine if there are any changes in band center due to photometric effects. No additional absorption features are introduced by the photometry. These results have serious implications on the interpretation of spectral observations in terms of abundance estimates and alteration processes as a function of location and association with geologic features.
  • Global mapping of the degree of space weathering on asteroid 25143 Itokawa by Hayabusa/AMICA observations

    Ishiguro, M.; Hiroi, T.; Tholen, D. J.; Sasaki, S.; Ueda, Y.; Nimura, T.; Abe, M.; Clark, B. E.; Yamamoto, A.; Yoshida, F.; et al. (The Meteoritical Society, 2007-01-01)
    We obtained color images of near-Earth asteroid 25143 Itokawa by the Hayabusa multiband imaging camera to characterize the regional color properties. Images were obtained for the whole disk from the gate position (GP) and home position (HP) at a spatial resolution of 0.8-3.7 m/ pixel. Whole-disk spectra are adjusted to the telescopic data obtained by the University of Hawai'is 88-inch telescope using the Eight Color Asteroid Survey (ECAS) system. The disk-resolved measurements show large variations in the three visible channels. We present a map of an index related to the degree of space weathering, which has been newly developed based on laboratory measurements. We find large variations in the degree of space weathering on Itokawa. Fresh materials are observed in regions of steep slopes and craters, whereas mature materials are ubiquitously distributed. This result suggests that pristine ordinary chondrite-like materials have been exposed through weathered layers by excavation. By also examining close-up images obtained during touchdown rehearsal, we find that most rocks in Itokawas rough terrains are weathered. Instead of a regolith blanket, the surface of this small asteroid is covered with weathered rocks and gravels.
  • Results from the Greenland Search for Meteorites expedition

    Haack, H.; Schutt, J.; Meibom, A.; Harvey, R. (The Meteoritical Society, 2007-01-01)
    Following discoveries of blue ice areas in Greenland resembling meteorite-bearing blue ice fields in Antarctica, a surface search of several of the most promising sites was carried out in August 2003. The ice fields are located in Kong Christian X Land, in northeastern Greenland around 74 degrees N at elevations between 2100 and 2400 m. No meteorites were found in any of the localities that were searched. Evidence of occasional significant melting (filled crevasses and melt sheets) suggest that summer temperatures are sometimes high enough that dark rocks, like meteorites, can melt through the upper layers of ice. Small terrestrial rocks and cryogenite were found down to 50 cm below the ice surface. Meter-sized terrestrial rocks were found on top of the ice downstream from nunataks. These rocks shade the ice below, and since they were apparently too massive to warm up during warm days, they remained at the surface as the surrounding ice ablated away. Our findings strongly suggest that Greenland is currently unlikely to harbor significant meteorite concentrations on blue ice fields.
  • The effect of Ni on element partitioning during iron meteorite crystallization

    Chabot, N. L.; Saslow, S. A.; McDonough, W. F.; McCoy, T. J. (The Meteoritical Society, 2007-01-01)
    Iron meteorites exhibit a large range in Ni concentrations, from only 4% to nearly 60%. Most previous experiments aimed at understanding the crystallization of iron meteorites have been conducted in systems with about 10% Ni or less. We performed solid metal/liquid metal experiments to determine the effect of Ni on partition coefficients for 20 trace elements pertinent to iron meteorites. Experiments were conducted in both the end-member Ni-S system as well as in the Fe-Ni-S system with intermediate Ni compositions applicable to high-Ni iron meteorites. The Ni content of the system affects solid metal/liquid metal partitioning behavior. For a given S concentration, partition coefficients in the Ni-S system can be over an order of magnitude larger than in the Fe-S system. However, for compositions relevant to even the most Ni-rich iron meteorites, the effect of Ni on partitioning behavior is minor, amounting to less than a factor of two for the majority of trace elements studied. Any effect of Ni also appears minor when it is compared to the large influence S has on element partitioning behavior. Thus, we conclude that in the presence of an evolving S-bearing metallic melt, crystallization models can safely neglect effects from Ni when considering the full range of iron meteorite compositions.
  • Characterization of the lithological contact in the shergottite EETA79001 A record of igneous differentiation processes on Mars

    Van Niekerk, D.; Goodrich, C. A.; Taylor, G. J.; Keil, K. (The Meteoritical Society, 2007-01-01)
    Elephant Moraine (EET) A79001 is the only Martian meteorite that consists of both an olivine-phyric shergottite (lithology A) and a basaltic shergottite (lithology B). The presence of these lithologies in one rock has previously been ascribed to mixing processes (either magmatic or impactinduced). Here we present data regarding phase changes across the contact between the lithologies. These data show that the contact is gradational and suggest that it is a primary igneous feature consistent with crystallization of a single cooling magma. We present a model to establish a petrogenetic connection between an olivine-phyric and a basaltic shergottite through differentiation. The model involves the shallow or surface emplacement of a magma that contained pre-eruptive solids (phenocrysts and minor xenocrysts). Subsequent differentiation via crystal settling and in situ crystallization (Langmuir 1989) resulted in a layered sequence of lithology A overlain by lithology B, with gradations in modal abundance of maskelynite (increasing from A to B) and pigeonite/ maskelynite (decreasing from A to B), and a gradational change in pattern of pyroxene zonation (zones of magnesian augite separating magnesian and ferroan pigeonite appear and thicken into B) across the contact. A pigeonite phenocryst-bearing zone near the contact in lithology B appears to be intermediate between lithology A and the bulk of lithology B (which resembles basaltic shergottite Queen Alexandra Range [QUE] 94201). Re-examination of Sr isotopic compositions in lithology A and across the contact is required to test and constrain the model.
  • Petrography of refractory inclusions in CM2.6 QUE 97990 and the origin of melilite-free spinel inclusions in CM chondrites

    Rubin, A. E. (The Meteoritical Society, 2007-01-01)
    Queen Alexandra Range (QUE) 97990 (CM2.6) is among the least-altered CM chondrites known. It contains 1.8 vol% refractory inclusions; 40 were studied from a single thin section. Inclusion varieties include simple, banded and nodular structures as well as simple and complex distended objects. The inclusions range in mean size from 30 to 530 micrometers and average 130 +/- 90 m. Many inclusions contain 25 +/- 15 vol% phyllosilicate (predominantly Mg-Fe serpentine); several contain small grains of perovskite. In addition to phyllosilicate, the most abundant inclusions in QUE 97990 consist mainly of spinel-pyroxene (35%), followed by spinel (20%), spinel-pyroxene-olivine (18%), pyroxene (12%), pyroxene-olivine (8%) and hibonite spinel (8%). Four pyroxene phases occur: diopside, Al-rich diopside (with 8.0 wt% Al2O3), Al-Ti diopside (i.e., fassaite), and (in two inclusions) enstatite. No inclusions contain melilite. Aqueous alteration of refractory inclusions transforms some phases (particularly melilite) into phyllosilicate; some inclusions broke apart during alteration. Melilite-free, phyllosilicate-bearing, spinel inclusions probably formed from pristine, phyllosilicate-free inclusions containing both melilite and spinel. Sixty-five percent of the refractory inclusions in QUE 97990 appear to be largely intact; the major exception is the group of spinel inclusions, all of which are fragments. Whereas QUE 97990 contains about 50 largely intact refractory inclusions/cm2, estimates from literature data imply that more-altered CM chondrites have lower modal abundances (and lower number densities) of refractory inclusions: Mighei (CM ~ 2.3) contains roughly 0.3-0.6 vol% inclusions (~10 largely intact inclusions/cm2); Cold Bokkeveld (CM2.2) contains ~0.01 vol% inclusions (on the order of 6 largely intact inclusions/cm^2).
  • Thermal history of ALH 84001 meteorite by Fe^(2+)-Mg ordering in orthopyroxene

    Domeneghetti, M. C.; Fioretti, A. M.; Cámara, F.; Molin, G.; Tazzoli, V. (The Meteoritical Society, 2007-01-01)
    A single orthopyroxene crystal from the Martian meteorite Allan Hills (ALH) 84001 was studied by X-ray diffraction (XRD) and electron microprobe analysis (EMPA) to retrieve information about its thermal history. Both sets of data were used to measure the Fe2+-Mg order degree between the M1 and M2 sites expressed by the distribution coefficient kD. The 529 +/- 30 degrees C closure temperature (Tc) of the Fe^(2+)-Mg ordering process of ALH 84001 orthopyroxene (Fs28) was calculated using Stimpfl (2005a, 2005b) lnkD versus 1/T equation obtained for intermediate iron sample. At this Tc, the orthopyroxene cooling rate, calculated by Gangulys (1982) numerical method, was 0.1 degrees C/day. This study puts new constraints on the last high-temperature thermal episode recorded by orthopyroxene. With reference to the geological history (Treiman 1998), we ascribe this episode to the I3 event, and we interpret the Tc of 529 degrees C as a lower limit for this impact heating. Our data confirm that experimentally defined physical conditions for the formation of magnetite from decomposition of carbonates took place on the Martian surface during event I3.