Treasure Hunting For Meteorites
By David Cowley
Treasures are falling from the sky. A natural object
originating in outer space that survives the impact with the
earth’s surface is called a meteorite. Most meteoroids burn up
when entering the Earth's atmosphere. However, it has been
estimated that over 500 meteorites do reach the surface each
year and they will range in size of a marble to basketball size
or larger. Only about five or six will be recovered each year
and pound for pound, meteorites are move valuable than gold.
If you are lucky enough to have discovered a meteorite you
could get about $4.00 a gram or $125.00 an ounce. Meteorites
have been found all over the world but some of the best hunting
places to start looking for them include deserts and dry lake
beds. Known meteorite impact areas like Barringer Meteor
Craterin in Arizona and Odessa Meteor Crater in Texas can also
produce good results. Meteorites have also been found in
California, Kansas, Illinois, Wisconsin, Oklahoma, New Mexico,
Chondrules meteorites is composed mostly of silicate and small
amounts of organic matter. They are believed to have originated
in the asteroid belt and are considered to be the building
blocks of the planets. 86% of the meteorites that fall to the
earths surface are Chondrites.
Achondrites meteorites is composed of igneous rocks that is
believed to be the remains of the asteroid crust. Meteorites
that have hit Mars and our Moon and have blown off material that
has later found its way to earth fall into this category. 8% of
the meteorites that fall to the earth are Achondrites.
An iron meteorite is thought to have been the core of asteroid
that were once molted. The denser metal separated from the
silicate and sank to the center of the asteroid. Later the
asteroid collided with another asteroid and was broken up into
smaller fragments. 5% of the recovered meteorites recovered fill
into this category.
The last 1% is composed of iron and silicate materials.
Professional meteorite hunters will use custom designed and
expensive tools. As a hobbyist you can hunt for meteorites with
a metal detector, rock hammer, shovel, gloves and a rare earth
magnet. Be very careful with rare earth magnets because they
will damage credit cards, cell phones, computers, PDAs and other
electronic equipment. Never care one near your wallet or in your
After finding a likely rock with your metal detector check your
find with the rare earth magnet. If the magnet sticks, and the
rock looks like it has been melted and some rust spots are
evident then you may have found a Meteorite.
One final note. Always be on the lookout for crystals in your
meteorites because it could be a diamond. The study published in
2006 analyzed the hydrogen in black diamond samples using
infrared-detection instruments and found that the quantity
indicated that the mineral formed in a supernova explosion prior
to the formation of the Solar System. These diamonds were formed
by carbon-rich cosmic dust in an environment near carbon stars.
The diamonds were incorporated into solid bodies that
subsequently fell to Earth as meteorites. If you really want a
piece of history then consider looking for meteorites. You may
end up with something as the solar system itself.
Happy Treasure Hunting.
About the Author: David Cowley has created numerous articles on
Treasure Hunting. He has also created a Web Site dedicated to
Treasure Hunting. Visit http://www.treasure-hunting-team.com
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