DIgital X-ray Maps of the Sorel Meteorite

Sorel Meteorite


The above images depict a chondrule from the Sorel Meteorite, which was heard and seen falling by much of the city of Montreal in late June of 1994. Seven pieces of the heavenly body were found by private collectors. Five of these pieces were then acquired by a consortium of five Quebec geoscience departments. This meteorite is classed as an ordinary chondrite (H6) which make up 81% of observed meteorite falls.

These images are digital X-ray maps of Mg (top) and Fe (bottom). They are generated by scanning the sample back and forth under an electron beam and recording the intensity of the x-rays generated at each point. In these images, the brighter the pixel the higher the concentration of the element. For these maps the data is further processed by comparing the X-ray intensity at each pixel to the intensity of a standard sample. In this way we can produce a composition map where the brightness of each pixel is related to an approximate composition (In this case weight percent MgO and FeO).

The important features of these images are the striped nature f the chondrule. This is produced by alternating crystals of olivine and pyroxene (Hypersthene). The dark material between these crystals is a Ca-rich glassy material. Also important is the large grain of native iron (white particle in lower left corner of the Fe image)

More Pictures of the Sorel Meteorite

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