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Northwest Africa 4480
Basic information Name: Northwest Africa 4480
     This is an OFFICIAL meteorite name.
Abbreviation: NWA 4480
Observed fall: No
Year found: 2006
Country: Algeria
Mass:help 13 g
Meteoritical Bulletin:  MB 92  (2007)  Martian (basaltic shergottite)
Recommended:  Martian (shergottite)    [explanation]

This is 1 of 324 approved meteorites (plus 2 unapproved names) classified as Martian (shergottite).   [show all]
Search for other: Martian meteorites
Comments: Approved 24 Jul 2007
Writeup from MB 92:

Northwest Africa 4480


Find: Summer 2006

Achondrite (Martian, basaltic shergottite)

History: The sample was recovered in Algeria in the summer of 2006. G. Hupé purchased it in Tagounite, Morocco in September 2006.

Physical characteristics: The meteorite is a single, very fresh 13 g ellipsoidal stone, mostly coated by dark brown fusion crust. Maskelynite, yellow-green olivine and tan-colored pyroxene are visible on cut face.

Petrography: (A. Irving and S. Kuehner, UWS) The stone is mostly a relatively fine-grained (mean grainsize 0.15 mm) basaltic rock, but with several coarser grained, glomerocrystic regions.  The dominant matrix consists of plagioclase laths (maskelynite), olivine and complexly-zoned clinopyroxene with accessory Ti-chromite, ilmenite, Mg-Fe-bearing merrillite and rare Si-rich glass or silica polymorph.Glomerocryst regions are composed of coarser (0.5-0.8 mm) plagioclase (maskelynite) and olivine with interstitial pigeonite and ilmenite.

Mineral compositions and geochemistry: Matrix - clinopyroxene is patchily zoned from augite cores (Fs24.9-31.2Wo35.3-31.1, FeO/MnO = 30-32) to pigeonite rims (Fs55.4-56.4Wo17.5-15.4, FeO/MnO = 36); olivine (Fa67.9-79.2, FeO/MnO = 49-52); plagioclase (An58.4-61.0 Or1.6). Plagioclase in glomerocryst regions is consistently more calcic (An66.3-68.5Or0.3). Bulk Composition (R. Korotev, WUSL): INAA of two ~37 mg whole fragments of matrix gave Na 1.40 wt%, Fe 15.8 wt%, and (in ppm) Sc 39.7, Cr 1027, Ni <60, La 1.85, Sm 2.69, Eu 0.86, Tb 1.05, Yb 4.16, Hf 3.16, Th 0.24; the REE pattern shows moderate light REE depletion, elevated heavy REE abundances and a negative Eu anomaly.

Classification: Achondrite (Martian, basaltic shergottite).

Type specimens: A total of 2.6 g of sample is on deposit at UWS. PSF holds the main mass (6.63 g).

Data from:
  Table 2
  Line 78:
Place of purchase:Tagounite, Morocco
Mass (g):13
   and collections
PSF: Planetary Studies Foundation,10 Winterwood Lane, Unit B, Galena, Illinois 61036-9283, United States; Website (institutional address; updated 1 Dec 2011)
UWS: University of Washington, Department of Earth and Space Sciences, 70 Johnson Hall, Seattle, WA 98195, United States (institutional address; updated 15 Jan 2012)
WUSL: Washington Univ., One Brookings Drive, St. Louis, MO 63130, United States (institutional address; updated 17 Oct 2011)
References: Published in Meteoritical Bulletin, no. 92, MAPS 42, 1647-1694 (2007)
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Photos from the Encyclopedia of Meteorites:
The Hupe Collection         


     This is 1 of 1368 approved meteorites from Algeria (plus 31 unapproved names) (plus 4 impact craters)

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