Thursday, March 25, 2010

Meteorite Or Meteor-Wrong?

More than 2 years ago, while we, (my colleague and I) were having our break at the side of the desert highway of our travel from Yanbu to Jeddah, I spotted a weird looking rock. I immediately picked it up, and I couldn't figure out what kind of rock it was, but then I thought that it might be a meteorite because the surface of the rock looks like it was melted, which can only happen when a meteorite entered the earth's atmosphere.

So I kept it inside my bag together with my things, and when we arrived home, I used it as a bookholder (or whatchamacallit), until just the other day, I decided to look it up in the internet to make sure if it is really a meteorite or a meteor-wrong, well that's how the expert call it if it's not a meteorite.

A lot of sites came out when I searched for "Meteorite Identification". I tried different sites but the Meteorite Market was the best. There was 1 to 8 steps to really know if the rock I found is a meteorite. It actually starts at step #2, but I started at step #3 because step #2 is for those people who saw the rock fell from the sky, and I didn't see it fell. The rock passed easily on step #3 and #4 but when I get to # 5, which is about the magnetism of the rock, it failed. My rock did not attract a magnet, so it ends there.

90% of all meteorites, whether it's Stone Meteorite, Iron Meteorite or Stony-Iron Meteorite, should attract a magnet because of its metal contents. The metal contents of the meteorite is also the reason why the color of  meteorites are black  to brown, and the brown color on the surface is rust.

To tell you the truth, I was so disappointed at the result of the test, I really thought I have a real meteorite in my hand. Anyway I will still keep it as a souvenir from my trip, and who knows, it might still be a meteorite, remember it says 90% of all meteorites are magnetic, and not 100%.

I just have to open my eyes a little bit wider when I'm in the desert. I still do not know when our next trip will be, it'll be very exciting!