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

  • Annual Subject Index

    The Meteoritical Society, 2004-01-01
  • Annual Author Index

    The Meteoritical Society, 2004-01-01
  • High-pressure phases in shock-induced melt veins of the Umbarger L6 chondrite: Constraints of shock pressure

    Xie, Z.; Sharp, T. G. (The Meteoritical Society, 2004-01-01)
    We report a previously undocumented set of high-pressure minerals in shock-induced melt veins of the Umbarger L6 chondrite. High-pressure minerals were identified with transmission electron microscopy (TEM) using selected area electron diffraction and energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy. Ringwoodite (Fa30), akimotoite (En11Fs89), and augite (En42Wo33Fs25) were found in the silicate matrix of the melt vein, representing the crystallization from a silicate melt during the shock pulse. Ringwoodite (Fa27) and hollandite-structured plagioclase were also found as polycrystalline aggregates in the melt vein, representing solid state transformation or melting with subsequent crystallization of entrained host rock fragments in the vein. In addition, Fe2SiO4-spinel (Fa66-Fa99) and stishovite crystallized from a FeO-SiO2-rich zone in the melt vein, which formed by shock melting of FeO-SiO2-rich material that had been altered and metasomatized before shock. Based on the pressure stabilities of the high-pressure minerals, ringwoodite, akimotoite, and Ca-clinopyroxene, the melt vein crystallized at approximately 18 GPa. The Fe2SiO4-spinel + stishovite assemblage in the FeO-SiO2- rich melts is consistent with crystallization of the melt vein matrix at the pressure up to 18 GPa. The crystallization pressure of ~18 GPa is much lower than the 4590 GPa pressure one would conclude from the S6 shock effects in melt veins (Stöffler et al. 1991) and somewhat less than the 25-30 GPa inferred from S5 shock effects (Schmitt 2000) found in the bulk rock.
  • NWA 1152 and Sahara 00182: New primitive carbonaceous chondrites with affinities to the CR and CV groups

    Smith, C. L.; Russell, S. S.; Gounelle, M.; Greenwood, R. C.; Franchi, I. A. (The Meteoritical Society, 2004-01-01)
    We have investigated the mineralogy, petrography, bulk chemistry, and light element isotope composition of the ungrouped chondrites North West Africa (NWA) 1152 and Sahara 00182. NWA 1152 contains predominantly type 1 porphyritic olivine (PO) and porphyritic olivinepyroxene (POP) chondrules. Chondrule silicates are magnesium-rich (Fo98.8 +/- 1.2, n = 36; Fs2.3 +/- 2.1 Wo1.2 +/- 0.3, n = 23). Matrix comprises ~40 vol% of the sample and is composed of a micron sized silicate groundmass with larger silicate, sulfide, magnetite, and Fe-Ni metal (Ni ~50 wt%) grains. Phyllosilicates were not observed in the matrix. Refractory inclusions are rare (0.3 vol%) and are spinel pyroxene aggregates or amoeboid olivine aggregates; melilite is absent from the refractory inclusions. Sahara 00182 contains predominantly type 1 PO chondrules, POP chondrules are less common. Most chondrules contain blebs of, and are often rimmed with, Fe-Ni metal and sulfide. Chondrule phenocrysts are magnesium-rich (Fo92.2 +/- 0.6, n = 129; Fs4.4 +/- 1.8 Wo1.3 +/- 1.1, n = 16). Matrix comprises ~30 vol% of the meteorite and is predominantly sub-micron silicates, with rare larger silicate gains. Matrix Fe-Ni metal (mean Ni = 5.8 wt%) and sulfide grains are up to mm scale. No phyllosilicates were observed in the matrix. Refractory inclusions are rare (1.1 vol%) and melilite is absent. The oxygen isotope composition of NWA 1152 falls within the range of the CV chondrites with delta-17O = -3.43 ppm delta-18O = 0.70 ppm and is similar to Sahara 00182, delta-17O = -3.89 ppm, delta-18O = -0.19 ppm (Grossman and Zipfel 2001). Based on mineralogical and petrographic characteristics, we suggest NWA 1152 and Sahara 00182 show many similarities with the CR chondrites, however, oxygen isotopes suggest affinity with the CVs. Thus, neither sample can be assigned to any of the currently known carbonaceous chondrite groups based on traditionally recognized characteristics. Both samples demonstrate the complexity of inter- and intra-group relationships of the carbonaceous chondrites. Whatever their classification, NWA 1152 and Sahara 00182 represent a source of relatively pristine solar system material.
  • Ion microprobe U-Th-Pb dating and REE analyses of phosphates in the nakhlites Lafayette and Yamato-000593/000749

    Terada, K.; Sano, Y. (The Meteoritical Society, 2004-01-01)
    U, Th, and Pb isotopes and rare earth elements (REEs) in individual phosphate grains from martian meteorites Lafayette and Yamato-000593/000749 were measured using a sensitive highresolution ion microprobe (SHRIMP). Observed U-Pb data of 12 apatite grains from Yamato (Y-) 000593/000749 are well represented by linear regressions in both conventional 2D isochron plots and the 3D U-Pb plot (total Pb/U isochron), indicating that the formation age of this meteorite is 1.53 +/- 0.46 Ga (2-sigma). On the other hand, the data of nine apatite grains from Lafayette are well represented by planar regression rather than linear regression, indicating that its formation age is 1.15 +/- 0.34 Ga (2-sigma) and that a secondary alteration process slightly disturbed its U-Pb systematics as discussed in the literature regarding Nakhla. The observed REE abundance patterns of the apatites in Lafayette and Yamato-000749, normalized to CI chondrites, are characterized by a progressive depletion of heavy REEs (HREEs), a negative Eu anomaly, similarity to each other, and consistency with previously reported data for Nakhla. Considering the extensive data from other radiometric systems such as Sm- Nd, Rb-Sr, Ar-Ar, and trace elements, our results suggest that the parent magmas of the nakhlites, including the newly found Y-000593/000749, are similar and that their crystallization ages are ~1.3 Ga.
  • Does maskelynite imply anything about impact craters?

    Fleischer, R. L. (The Meteoritical Society, 2004-01-01)
  • Are high-temperature fractionations in the solar nebula preserved in highly siderophile element systematics of the Earth's mantle?

    Schmidt, G. (The Meteoritical Society, 2004-01-01)
    The relative abundances of the highly siderophile elements (HSE) Os, Ir, Ru, Pt, Rh, and Pd in relatively pristine lherzolites differ from solar abundance ratios and are several orders of magnitude higher than predicted for equilibrium distribution between metal/silicate (core-mantle). The samples are characterized by a mean Ca/Al ratio of 1.18 +/- 0.09 sigma-M and a mean Ca/Si ratio of 0.10 +/- 0.01 sigma-M, overlapping with a mean Ca/Al of 1.069 +/- 0.044 sigma-M and a mean Ca/Si of 0.081 +/- 0.023 sigma-M found in chondrites (Wasson and Kallemeyn 1988). Interestingly, the CI-normalized abundance pattern shows decreasing solar system normalized abundances with increasing condensation temperatures. The abundance of the moderately volatile element Pd is about 2x higher than those in the most refractory siderophiles Ir and Os. Thus, the HSE systematics of upper mantle samples suggest that the late bombardment, which added these elements to the accreting Earth, more closely resembles materials of highly reduced EH or EL chondrites than carbonaceous chondrites. In fact, the HSE in the Earth mantle are even more fractionated than the enstatite chondritesan indication that some inner solar system materials were more highly fractionated than the latter.
  • Radiogenic isotope investigation of the St-Robert H5 fall

    Poirier, A.; Doucelance, R.; Gariépy, C. (The Meteoritical Society, 2004-01-01)
    The St-Robert H5 chondrite yields a mineral/whole-rock Pb-Pb age of 4565 +/- 23 Ma (2-sigma) comparable to the accepted age of most chondrites. The regression of chondrule data give a similar age of 4566 +/- 7 Ma (2-sigma). These results imply that no major perturbation affected the Pb-Pb systematics of this meteorites parent body within the first few billion years following its accretion. Re and Os concentrations along with Os isotopic compositions of whole-rock fragments, surface fusion crusts and metal phases are also reported. The whole rock measurements for this ordinary chondrite are characterized by high Re/Os ratio coupled with relatively high 187Os/188Os (compared to average ordinary chondrites), that we interpret as a long term Re enrichment. As for most chondrites, no precise geochronological information could be extracted from the Re/Os systematics, although most data plot near the IIIAB reference isochron (Smoliar et al. 1996). From the fusion crust results, we rule out the possibility that atmospheric entry caused the perturbations in the Re-Os system, since melted crust analysis yields among the most concordant data points. Evidence from metal phases suggests that a very recent process perturbed the isochron, relocating Re from kamacite toward troilite.
  • Planetary accretion, oxygen isotopes, and the central limit theorem

    Nuth, J. A.; Hill, H. G. M. (The Meteoritical Society, 2004-01-01)
    The accumulation of presolar dust into increasingly larger aggregates such as calciumaluminum- rich inclusions (CAIs) and chondrules, asteroids, and planets should result in a drastic reduction in the numerical spread in oxygen isotopic composition between bodies of similar size, in accord with the central limit theorem. Observed variations in oxygen isotopic composition are many orders of magnitude larger than would be predicted by a simple, random accumulation model that begins in a well-mixed nebula, no matter what size objects are used as the beginning or end points of the calculation. This discrepancy implies either that some as yet unspecified but relatively long-lived process acted on the solids in the solar nebula to increase the spread in oxygen isotopic composition during each and every stage of accumulation, or that the nebula was heterogeneous (at least in oxygen) and maintained this heterogeneity throughout most of its nebular history. Depending on its origin, large-scale nebular heterogeneity could have significant consequences for many areas of cosmochemistry, including the application of well-known isotopic systems to the dating of nebular events and the prediction of bulk compositions of planetary bodies on the basis of a uniform cosmic abundance. The evidence supports a scenario wherein the oxygen isotopic composition of nebular solids becomes progressively depleted in 16O with time due to chemical processing within the nebula, rather than a scenario where 16O-rich dust and other materials are injected into the nebula, possibly causing its initial collapse.
  • Martian xenon components in Shergotty mineral separates: Locations, sources, and trapping mechanisms

    Ocker, K. D.; Gilmour, J. D. (The Meteoritical Society, 2004-01-01)
    Isotopic signatures and concentrations of xenon have been measured in Shergotty mineral separates by laser step heating. Martian atmosphere and martian interior xenon are present, as is a spallation component. Martian atmospheric xenon is 5-10 times more concentrated in opaque minerals (magnetite, ilmenite, and pyrrhotite) and maskelynite than in pyroxenes, perhaps reflecting grain size variation. This is shown to be consistent with shock incorporation. A component consisting of solar xenon with a fission contribution, similar to components previously identified in martian meteorites and associated with the martian interior, is best defined in the pyroxene-dominated separates. This component exhibits a consistent 129Xe (129Xe/132Xe ~1.2) excess over solar/planetary (129Xe/132Xe ~1.04). We suggest that gas present in the melt, perhaps a mixture of interior xenon and martian atmosphere, was incorporated into the pyroxenes in Shergotty as the minerals crystallized.
  • Silica-rich igneous rims around magnesian chondrules in CR carbonaceous chondrites: Evidence for condensation origin from fractionated nebular gas

    Krot, A. N.; Libourel, G.; Goodrich, C. A.; Petaev, M. I. (The Meteoritical Society, 2004-01-01)
    The outer portions of many type I chondrules (Fa and Fs <5 mol%) in CR chondrites (except Renazzo and Al Rais) consist of silica-rich igneous rims (SIRs). The host chondrules are often layered and have a porphyritic core surrounded by a coarse-grained igneous rim rich in low-Capyroxene. The SIRs are sulfide-free and consist of igneously-zoned low-Ca and high-Ca pyroxenes, glassy mesostasis, Fe, Ni-metal nodules, and a nearly pure SiO2 phase. The high-Ca pyroxenes in these rims are enriched in Cr (up to 3.5 wt% Cr2O3) and Mn (up to 4.4 wt% MnO) and depleted in Al and Ti relative to those in the host chondrules, and contain detectable Na (up to 0.2 wt% Na2O).Mesostases show systematic compositional variations: Si, Na, K, and Mn contents increase, whereas Ca, Mg, Al, and Cr contents decrease from chondrule core, through pyroxene-rich igneous rim (PIR), and to SIR; FeO content remains nearly constant. Glass melt inclusions in olivine phenocrysts in the chondrule cores have high Ca and Al, and low Si, with Na, K, and Mn contents that are below electron microprobe detection limits. Fe, Ni-metal grains in SIRs are depleted in Ni and Co relative to those in the host chondrules. The presence of sulfide-free, SIRs around sulfide-free type I chondrules in CR chondrites may indicate that these chondrules formed at high (>800 K) ambient nebular temperatures and escaped remelting at lower ambient temperatures. We suggest that these rims formed either by gas-solid condensation of silica-normative materials onto chondrule surfaces and subsequent incomplete melting, or by direct SiO (gas) condensation into chondrule melts. In either case, the condensation occurred from a fractionated, nebular gas enriched in Si, Na, K, Mn, and Cr relative to Mg. The fractionation of these lithophile elements could be due to isolation (in the chondrules) of the higher temperature condensates from reaction with the nebular gas or to evaporation-recondensation of these elements during chondrule formation. These mechanisms and the observed increase in pyroxene/olivine ratio toward the peripheries of most type I chondrules in CR, CV, and ordinary chondrites may explain the origin of olivine-rich and pyroxene-rich chondrules in general.
  • Potassium diffusion in melilite: Experimental studies and constraints on the thermal history and size of planetesimals hosting CAIs

    Ito, Motoo; Ganguly, Jibamitra (The Meteoritical Society, 2004-01-01)
    Among the calcium-aluminum-rich inclusions or CAIs, excess 41K (41K*), which was produced by the decay of the short-lived radionuclide 41Ca (t1/2 = 0.1 Myr), has so far been detected in fassaite and in two grains of melilites. These observations could be used to provide important constraints on the thermal history and size of the planetesimals into which the CAIs were incorporated, provided the diffusion kinetic properties of K in these minerals are known. Thus, we have experimentally determined K diffusion kinetics in the melilite end-members, åkermanite and gehlenite, as a function of temperature (900-1200 degrees C) and crystallographic orientation at 1 bar pressure. The closure temperature of K diffusion in melilite, Tc(K:mel), for the observed grain size of melilite in the CAIs and cooling rate of 10-100 degrees C/Myr, as calculated from our diffusion data, is much higher than that of Mg in anorthite. The latter was calculated from the available Mg diffusion data in anorthite. Assuming that the planetesimals were heated by the decay of 26Al and 60Fe, we have calculated the size of a planetesimal as a function of the accretion time, tf, such that the peak temperature at a specified radial distance rc equals Tc(K:mel). The ratio (rc/R)3 defines the planetesimal volume fraction within which 41K* in melilite grains would be at least partly disturbed, if these were randomly distributed within a planetesimal. A similar calculation was also carried out to define R versus tf relation such that 26Mg* was lost from ~50% of randomly distributed anorthite grains, as seems to be suggested by the observational data. These calculations suggest that ~60% of melilite grains should retain 41K* if ~50% of anorthite grains had retained 26Mg*. Assuming that tf was not smaller than the time of chondrule formation, our calculations yield a range of planetesimal size of ~20-30 km, depending on the choice of planetesimal surface temperature and initial abundance of the heat producing isotope 60Fe.
  • Bottle-green microtektites from the South Tasman Rise: Deep-sea evidence for an impact event near the Miocene/Pliocene boundary

    Kelly, D. Clay; Elkins-Tanton, Linda T. (The Meteoritical Society, 2004-01-01)
    Forty-eight bottle-green microtektites (BGMTs) were found in a core sample recovered from Ocean Drilling Program Site 1169, located along the western flank of the South Tasman Rise in the southeastern Indian Ocean. Biostratigraphic evidence loosely constrains the age of the Site 1169 BGMTs to an interval spanning the late-middle Miocene to earliest Pliocene (12.1-4.6 Ma); an incomplete core recovery and a major stratigraphic hiatus prevented a more precise age determination. This broad range of biostratigraphic ages indicates that these microtektites predate the Australasian strewn layer by at least 3.83 Ma, and perhaps by as much as 11.33 Ma. Furthermore, the REE signatures of the Site 1169 BGMTs are incongruent with those of typical Australasian ejecta, indicating that the Site 1169 BGMTs are not part of the larger Australasian strewn field. Among the various australite subgroups, the Site 1169 BGMTs are most similar in age to the HNa/K australites. However, numerous compositional discrepancies indicate that these two ejecta populations are also unrelated; the great distances separating Site 1169 from HNa/K australite-bearing localities also makes a shared provenance unlikely. Therefore, we conclude that the Site 1169 BGMTs were formed by a late Miocene impact that is distinctly separate from the Australasian and HNa/K australite events, though the location of this impact is unknown.
  • Non-equilibrium concepts lead to a unified explanation of the formation of chondrules and chondrites

    Blander, Milton; Pelton, Arthur D.; Jung, In-Ho; Weber, Richard (The Meteoritical Society, 2004-01-01)
    Calculations of the formation of seven types of chondrules in Semarkona from a gas of solar composition were performed with the Fact computer program to predict the chemistries of oxides, including silicates, developed by the authors and their colleagues. The constrained equilibrium theory was used in the calculations with two nucleation constraints suggested by nucleation theory. The first constraint was the blocking of Fe and other metal gaseous atoms from condensing to form solids or liquids because of the very high surface free energies and high surface tensions of the solid and liquid metals, respectively. The second constraint was the blocking of the condensation of solids and the formation of metastable liquid oxides (including silicates) well below their liquidus temperatures. Our laboratory experiments suggested subcooling of type IIA chondrule compositions of 400 degrees or more below the liquidus temperature. The blocking of iron leads to a supersaturation of Fe atoms, so that the partial pressure of Fe (pFe) is larger than the partial pressure at equilibrium (pFe(eq)). The supersaturation ratio S = pFe/pFe(eq) becomes larger than 1 and increases rapidly with a decrease in temperature. This drives the reaction Fe + H2O <--> H2 + FeO to the right. With S = 100, the activity of FeO in the liquid droplet is 100 times as large as the value at equilibrium. The FeO activities are a function of temperature and provide relative average temperatures of the crystallization of chondrules. Our calculations for the LL3.0 chondrite Semarkona and our study of some non-equilibrium effects lead to accurate representations of the compositions of chondrules of types IA, IAB, IB, IIA, IIAB, IIB, and CC. Our concepts readily explain both the variety of FeO concentrations in the different chondrule types and the entire process of chondrule formation. Our theory is unified and could possibly explain the formation of chondrules in all chondritic meteorites as well as provide a simple explanation for the complex chemistries of chondrites, especially type 3 chondrites.