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Allan Hills 84001
Basic information Name: Allan Hills 84001
     This is an OFFICIAL meteorite name.
Abbreviation: ALH 84001
Observed fall: No
Year found: 1984
Country: Antarctica [Collected by US Antarctic Search for Meteorites program (ANSMET)]
Mass:help 1931 g
Classification
  history:
Antarctic Meteorite Newsletter:  AMN 8(2)  (1985)  Diogenite
AMN 16(3)  (1993)  SNC-orthopyroxenite
Meteoritical Bulletin:  MB 76  (1994)  SNC
NHM Catalogue:  5th Edition  (2000)  Martian (OPX)
MetBase:  v. 7.1  (2006)  SNC-orthopyroxenite
Recommended:  Martian (OPX)    [explanation]

This is the only approved meteorite classified as Martian (OPX).
Search for other: Martian meteorites
Writeuphelp
Writeup from AMN 8(2):

Sample No.: ALH84001

Location: Allan Hills

Weight (g): 1930.9

Field No.: 1539

Dimensions (cm): 17 x 9.5 x 6.5

Meteorite Type: Diogenite

 

Macroscopic Description: Roberta Score

Eighty percent of this rectangular shaped achondrite is covered with dull black fusion crust. Remnants of flow marks are visible on two exterior surfaces. Areas not covered by fusion crust have a greenish-gray color and a blocky texture. Cleavage planes are obvious on some large crystal faces and the stone has a shocked appearance. Small areas of oxidation are present in the interior of ALH84001. Abundant small black grains (ilmenite?) are scattered throughout the stone. Small fractures are numerous.

 

Thin Section (,3) Description: Glenn MacPherson

The meteorite consists of orthopyroxene (En70 Fs27 Wo3), as crystals up to 5 mm in length, that forms a polygonal-granular mosaic. Despite the fact that pyroxene compositions contain 1.5% CaO in bulk, no exsolution lamellae were observed. Veins of intensely granulated pyroxene cross cut the section. In addition to pyroxene, other phases include minor chromite and irregular patches of a featureless and isotropic maskelynite (An35-39Ab57-61Or43-4). The section does not show Fe-oxide staining but does contain patches of brown, Fe-rich carbonate, (Fe29Mg60Ca11)CO3. Although this diogenite contains granulated areas, it does not appear to be a breccia.



Writeup from AMN 16(3):

Sample No.: ALH84001

Location: Allan Hills - Far Western Icefield

Dimensions (cm): 17 x 9.5 x 6.5

Weight (g): 1930.9

Weathering: A/B

Fracturing: B

26Al (dpm/kg): 61 ± 2

NTL (krad at 250°C): 1.3 ± 0.1

Meteorite Type: SNC orthopyroxenite

 

Brief descriptions of ALH84001 have previously been given in Antarctic Meteorite Newsletter 8(2) in 1985, and by Berkley and Boynton (1992), Meteoritics 27, 387-394. The description of Sack et al. (1991), Geochim. Cosmochim. Acta 55,1111-1120, was of a mislabeled section of EETA79002 (see News and Information on page 2 for more information).

 

Macroscopic Description: Roberts Score

Eighty percent of this rectangular shaped achondrite is covered with dull black fusion crust. Remnants of flow marks are visible on two exterior surfaces. Areas not covered by fusion crust have a greenish-gray color and a blocky texture. Cleavage planes are obvious on some large crystal faces and the stone has a shocked appearance.

 

Small areas of oxidation are present in the interior of ALH84001. Abundant small, black chromite grains are scattered throughout the stone. Small fractures are numerous.

 

Thin Section (,64) Description: David W. Mittlefehldt

The section consists of a coarse-grained, cataclastic orthopyroxenite. The orthopyroxene is generally anhedral and up to 3.5 mm across. Common minor minerals are euhedral to anhedral chromite grains up to 500 m [sic] across and interstitial maskelynite typically 100-300 m [sic] in size. Accessory phases are augite, calcium phosphate, iron disulfide, and probable carbonates (by petrography, EDS spectra) of Mg, Ca, Mn and/or Fe. The sample shows cataclastic texture, with common veins of crushed orthopyroxene plus chromite (grain size up to ~30 m [sic]) transecting coarse orthopyroxene. The latter exhibits patchy extinction. The original texture shows common 120° triple junctures between coarse orthopyroxene grains. Many orthopyroxene and chromite grain boundaries exhibit offsets along fractures. Mineral compositions are: orthopyroxene Wo3.3En69Fs27; augite Wo42Eng5Fs13; maskelynite An31Ab63Or6; chromite 100 Mg/(Mg+Fe2+) -19, 100 Cr/(Cr+Al+Fe ) ~70, TiO2 ~2.2 wt%, Fe2O3 (from stoichiometry) ~7.7 wt%. Orthopyroxene and chromite are relatively homogeneous in composition.

 

Although originally classified as a diogenite, there are several petrologic features which indicate that ALH84001 is not a diogenite. Iron disulfide has not been reported from diogenites, or any HED meteorite; troilite is the sulfide phase. Plagioclase as sodic as Ab63 has not been reported from any HED meteorite; the most sodic plagioclase from diogenites is about Ab35, but most are Ab20. Carbonate has not been found in diogenites or other HED meteorites, including as Antarctic weathering products. Diogenite spinels typically contain <1 wt% TiO2 (except Yamato 75032-type diogenites, ~1.8 wt%), and Fe2O3 from stoichiometry is <1 wt%. Diogenites are typically monomict or polymict breccias composed dominantly of orthopyroxene laths in a matrix of comminuted orthopyroxene. The original grain size of diogenites was of the order of cm, not mm. The cataclastic texture of ALH84001 is uncommon in other diogenites. Tatahouine does exhibit patchy extinction, but does not contain crushed zones. Only ALHA77256 has a texture resembling that of ALH84001. Maskelynite is rare in HED meteorites, although eucrites Padvarninkai  and ALHA81313 contain it.

 

The mineralogic and petrographic features of ALH84001 are more in accord with those exhibited by the SNC meteorites. Iron disulfide is present in several SNC meteorites. The composition of maskelynite in ALH84001 falls within the range of other SNCs, and SNC plagioclase is commonly maskelynite. Calcium carbonates have been identified as pre-terrestrial aqueous alteration in some SNCs. Spinels in SNC meteorites commonly contain substantial calculated Fe3+. SNC meteorites show a wide variety of shock textures, including patchy extinction of coarse-grained orthopyroxene in EETA79001, similar to that in ALH84001, although transecting crushed zones have not been described.

 

Based on its petrography, ALH84001 is a new, and unusual, SNC meteorite classified as a SNC orthopyroxenite.

 

Oxygen Isotope Analysis: Robert Clayton

The oxygen isotope composition of ALH84001 is: δ18O = +4.60; δ17O = +2.65, excess 17O = 0.25. These analyses are indistinguishable from those of Nakhla and Lafayette.

 

Data from:
  MB76
  Table 2
  Line 967:
Origin or pseudonym:Far Western
Mass (g):1930.9
Class:"SNC"
Weathering grade:A/B
Ferrosilite (mol%):27
Comments:NTL=1.3±0.1
Plots: O isotopes:  
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References: Published in Antarctic Meteorite Newsletter 16(3) (1993), JSC, Houston
Published in Antarctic Meteorite Newsletter 8(2) (1985), JSC, Houston
Published in Meteoritical Bulletin, no. 76, Meteoritics 29, 100-143 (1994)
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Photos:
CreditPhotos
Photos from the Encyclopedia of Meteorites:
Dr Carlton Allen, JSC-KT, NASA            
Photos uploaded by members of the Encyclopedia of Meteorites.
    (Caution, these are of unknown reliability)
Aeroliths Collection Theodossiou      
MeteoriteCollector.org - USNM - Smithsonian   
Geography:

Antarctica
Coordinates:
     Catalogue of Meteorites:   (76° 43'S, 159° 40'E)
     Recommended::   (76° 55' 13"S, 156° 46' 25"E)
Note: the NHM and MetBase coordinates are 77.1 km apart

Statistics:
     This is 1 of 33930 approved meteorites from Antarctica (plus 6798 unapproved names)
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