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The Strangest Rock Ever Found

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  • The Strangest Rock Ever Found

    Might seem a bit inscrutable if you're not up on planetary geology. Bottom line is the rock appears to predate the formation of our solar system, making it interstellar in origin. It's impact on Earth seems to be associated with an impact formed glass known as Libyan Desert Glass, found in the Sahara Desert region of Libya. I have a specimen of Libyan Desert Glass, (it's a lot prettier then this strangest of meteorites known), and will try to post a photo to this thread at some point.

    Some meteorites include inclusions that represent material from a supernova outside our own solar system prior to our system's formation. But this seems to be the first actual rock that is interstellar in origin....

    https://newatlas.com/hypatia-stone-i...nalysis/52900/

  • #2
    That is fascinating reading Charlie. I wish that the video sound quality was a little better..
    Bruce
    In life there are losers and finders. Which one are you?

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    • #3
      When are you going to get yourself a piece? Amazing find, to think how far it traveled and why. Watched the Nova episode on Black Holes last night. This universe ( are there more? ) blows my mind and I find it fascinating.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by gregszybala View Post
        When are you going to get yourself a piece? Amazing find, to think how far it traveled and why. Watched the Nova episode on Black Holes last night. This universe ( are there more? ) blows my mind and I find it fascinating.
        Yeah, that show on black holes was excellent. As for this stone, I doubt any private collector would ever own any. Don't know the circumstances of its recovery, but very little was found as far as I can see. I would love a piece, but I don't actively collect space rocks anymore anyway. Still curate a collection, though.

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        • #5
          Now that's what I call an artifact - it's so old it predates Earth. Wow. Can you imagine finding something like that. You wonder how they found it? Charlie - that's some amazing stuff. Hey Greg - that video was basically what was in the written narrative below it. Post some pic's Charlie - Would love to see what ya got...
          Pickett/Fentress County, Tn - Any day on this side of the grass is a good day. -Chuck-

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          • CMD
            CMD commented
            Editing a comment
            I will, Chuck. Pretty busy, but I'll do so. Got to find and dig out my Libyan Desert Glass....

        • #6
          Originally posted by Scorpion68 View Post
          Now that's what I call an artifact - it's so old it predates Earth. Wow. Can you imagine finding something like that. You wonder how they found it? Charlie - that's some amazing stuff. Hey Greg - that video was basically what was in the written narrative below it. Post some pic's Charlie - Would love to see what ya got...
          Well, I can't show you any of the meteorite described in this story, Chuck, and I still have to dig out the impact created glass created by its impact with Earth, Chuck, but I can show you material that is older then our solar system. I can show you star dust, in effect,

          The Allende meteorite fell in Pueblito de Allende on Feb. 8, 1969. It is the most scientifically studied meteorite in history. Here is some info on the Allende meteorite, which, like most meteorites, was formed about 4.6 billion years ago:

          https://naturalhistory.si.edu/onehun...meteorite.html

          The first two photos here are my 379 gram individual specimen from the Allende shower. Collected by Robert Haag, aka "the Meteorite Man" shortly after the fall. The Fusion crust, which forms as it travels through our atmosphere, is super fresh, and this would be regarded as a world class specimen for its size.

          Now, in the second photo below, notice the whitish inclusions. Those are called Calcium Aluminum Inclusions, or CAI's. They are star dust. Long before our solar system formed, when our sun was still a solar nebula, a distant star went super nova. When material from that nova reached the vicinity of our solar system, it became incorporated into the earliest matter that formed in our solar system. So those white inclusions that you see are material from a super nova that happened before our solar system formed. Meteorites like Allende are the oldest rocks we humans can ever hold in our hands. They are the original matter of our solar system. I imagine the meteorite described in the story in this thread is actually somewhat older, not sure if it is any older then these CAI's.....

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          Here is a fragment of Allende that I purchased for my wife years ago. It shows those white CAI inclusions very well:

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          • Scorpion68
            Scorpion68 commented
            Editing a comment
            Charlie - Those are absolutely the most awesome things that I have ever seen. Like Greg says - those were around light years before earth formed and you're holding them in your hand. Is that Fusion Crust like a carbon - it's looks to be awful thin. Thanks soooo much Charlie for taking the time. Looking forward to seeing the Desert Glass.

          • CMD
            CMD commented
            Editing a comment
            Yes, Chuck, fusion crust is a very thin burnt layer, formed as it fell through the friction of atmosphere. Folks sometimes make the mistake of assuming meteorites must be hot when they first hit, even able to start fires. But, no. The brief igniting they experience is only on the surface. They have all been cold soaked in the absolute zero of outer space for millions, even billions of years, and sometimes the sensation of a cold surface similar to dry ice can feel like a burn.

            Meteorite collecting is extremely intellectually engaging, as you really must learn the science to best appreciate what you collect. And I always liked "witnessed falls", historic falls with neat stories and human element attached to the event of their fall and their recovery.

            Plus you can own pieces of meteorites that originated as rocks on the moon and Mars. Knocked off those planetary bodies by impacts, and eventually captured by Earth's gravity and falling to Earth. One can own a piece of the moon, a piece of Mars. I bought my first meteorite in 1983, and it was a very enjoyable hobby. Space Rox rock! Lol.

        • #7
          Billions of years and light years from origin in your hand. Amazing.

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          • CMD
            CMD commented
            Editing a comment
            Yeah, meteorites always stretch the mind! That's what I loved about them.

        • #8
          Chuck, might be awhile before I can dig out my specimen of Libyan Desert Glass, but it's not as good as the pieces seen here, including mounted in a pendent belonging to none other then King Tut himself:

          https://www.temehu.com/libyan-desert-glass.htm

          A real treasure among many treasures from the tomb of King Tut:


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          Libyan Desert Glass was formed from the impact of this interstellar meteorite. Flaked tools were also made from it, making it a prehistoric toolstone in that part of the world. It is very beautiful material, as seen as the center setting in King Tut's pendent.

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          • #9
            CMD and this is the best thread ever !!!!!

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            • CMD
              CMD commented
              Editing a comment
              Thanks Tam!

          • #10
            That's a gorgeous interstellar cabachon, Charlie!
            Child of the tides

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            • CMD
              CMD commented
              Editing a comment
              Only the best for the Pharaoh!

          • #11
            Well, I finally got around to digging out my modest little specimen of Libyan Desert Glass, or LDG. It's only 10.5 grams. Although it's impact created glass, it does not weigh near as much as the same amount of glass we are more familiar with.

            Notice the dimples/sculpting effect? Here's how it goes. The impact of the meteorite described in the opening article created this material instantly out of the Sahara sand. At the same time, the impact blasted the pieces into space, but not enough to escape the Earth's gravity. So the pieces showered down upon the Sahara desert, and they melted a bit as they fell through the friction of the atmosphere, creating those dimples, which are where pockets of air swirled in the molten glass. Hope I got that right.

            You can also maybe see that this material could be flaked somewhat, and tools were fashioned out of it by the prehistoric inhabitants of the Sahara.

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            • Havenhunter
              Havenhunter commented
              Editing a comment
              Much prettier than the fulgurites I have found on the beach.

            • CMD
              CMD commented
              Editing a comment
              Some much needed correction here: it was far more likely that an intense aerial explosion and heat created the LDG. The meteorite fragments described are, however, remnants of the incoming that survived and fell to Earth.

          • #12
            This is information I have never ever heard of .
            Just fascinating

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            • #13
              Charlie - Thanks so much for going out of your way to post these pics. I impressed with the both the Pharaoh's pendant and the Libyan Desert Glass you're holding. The human mind just can't grasp that time difference, it's just unimaginable to me. I sometimes have trouble dealing with just 8-10K years that we often associate with our hobby of artifacts, let alone over 4.6 Billion years. I went and looked at the 300 million year old Lycopsid root specimen that I have and kinda smirked at it - 300 Million vs 4.6 Billion years. Wow. This post made my day Charlie - thanks again.
              Pickett/Fentress County, Tn - Any day on this side of the grass is a good day. -Chuck-

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              • CMD
                CMD commented
                Editing a comment
                Chuck, I like "deep time" in all the things I've collected. Meteorites are the deep time of our solar system, fossils are the deep time of life on Earth, and artifacts are the deep time of man on Earth. They are al great things to collect, and all reflect deep time to some degree.
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