February 6, 2023

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Two new minerals have been discovered in a meteorite that crashed in Africa

two new metals,Halalit“and the”ElkenstoniteScientists studying a large meteorite that crashed in 2020 discovered an Africa.

These are the minerals that were found in a 70-gram piece of meteorite, which Discovered in Somalia in 2020 It is the ninth largest ever found, according to a University of Alberta press release.

according to CNNthe Chris Hurd, curator of the university’s meteorite collection, obtained samples of the alien mineral so he could classify them. While examining it, something unusual caught his attention, as some parts of the specimen were not recognizable under a microscope. Then he sought advice from Andrew Lowcock, head of the university’s Electron Microprobe Laboratory, where Lowcock has experience describing new minerals.

On the first day of some analyses, Lowcock reported that “uThere are at least two new minerals out thereHurd, a professor in the university’s department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, said in a statement. “It was amazing. Most of the time it takes a lot more work than that to say there’s new metal.”

The minerals are named in order. “Elalite” (elite) after the name of the meteorite itself, which is called “Al-Ali ”, as it was named after the city Ali in central Somalia where it was found.

The second metal was namedElkinstonite” by Lindy Elkins-Tanton, Vice Chair of the Planetary Initiative at the University of Arizona. Elkins-Tanton is also a Professor ofFaculty of Earth and Space Exploration at that university and the principal investigator on NASA’s upcoming Psyche mission — a journey to a mineral-rich asteroid orbiting the sun between Mars and Jupiter, according to the space agency.

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The approval of the two new minerals by the International Metallurgical Society in November of this year “shows that the project is robust,” said Oliver Schooner, a mineralogist and research professor in the Department of Earth Sciences at the University of Nevada at Las Vegas.

Every time a new mineral is discovered, it means that The real geological conditions, the chemistry of the meteorite, are different from what has been found before, Hurd said. “That’s what makes it exciting: In this particular meteorite there are two new official minerals to science.”

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