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El Menia
Basic information Name: El Menia
     This is an OFFICIAL meteorite name.
Abbreviation: There is no official abbreviation for this meteorite.
Observed fall: Yes, confirmed fall
Year fell: 2023
Country: Algeria
Mass:help 75 kg
Meteoritical Bulletin:  MB 112  (2023)  L5
Recommended:  L5    [explanation]

This is 1 of 8888 approved meteorites (plus 5 unapproved names) classified as L5.   [show all]
Search for other: L chondrites, L chondrites (type 4-7), Ordinary chondrites, and Ordinary chondrites (type 4-7)
Comments: Approved 29 Sep 2023
Writeup from MB 112:

El Menia        30° 25' 53"N,  2° 49' 25"E

Ghardaia, Algeria

Confirmed fall: 2023

Classification: Ordinary chondrite (L5)

History: On Saturday, March 11, 2023, at approximately 10:30 am local time, multiple eyewitnesses from Algeria and Mauritania (Ben Hmida Hakoum, Zegay Yaakoub, Didoua Bachir, Bourzma Lamin, Belakhal Mhani, Hassi Al-Fahal, Hassi Ghanem, Noureddine Bellakehal) reported seeing a bright fireball approaching from a north to south direction at a relatively high velocity and shallow angle of entry. Residents within the city of El Menia reported hearing a sonic boom followed by stones hitting the ground; stones were reportedly recovered as early as ' after the observed fireball (most of these were completely or partially covered in fresh fusion crust, some displaying a bluish color; some stones appear to have "skipped" on the sand after landing). Some of the stones fell in farms and camel pastures nearby to El Menia; the first of these stones was recovered by Elhachemi Houamid, and a later stone recovered by Ahmed Elmniai; other stones were recovered by Noureddine Bellakehal (who had observed the fireball from the garden in his home) and other meteorite hunters within the desert surrounding El Menia. Stones were recovered primarily in the Hassi Walen area SW of El Menia; an estimated strewn field ellipse was bounded between 30°30’01.4" N 02°50’04.4" E and 30°21’57.6" N 2°43’04.5" E, with the ellipse center estimated to be at 30° 25.885’ N 02° 49.42’ E, approximately 5 kilometers from the nearby town of El Nebka. In total, over a hundred individual stones and fragments were recovered (ranging from <1 g to >1 kg in size), with an estimated total known weight of approximately 75 kg. Matthew Stream purchased 8 kg (with the largest piece being a 1.79 kg individual) and provided a 23.4 g type specimen to Cascadia; Ziyao Wang purchased 7.2 kg and provided a 39.4 g type specimen to UWB; Sean Mahoney purchased 5 kg and provided a 21.7 g type specimen to UNM.

Physical characteristics: Hundreds of stones (ranging from sub-g to kg sized); some found as complete individuals with fully or partially covered fusion crust (and some attached sand debris), others found as tiny fragments with exposed interiors. Some stones have a fusion crust that appears slightly bluish in color.

Petrography: (D. Sheikh, Cascadia) Sample is an equilibrated ordinary chondrite comprised of few chondrules, and has a matrix containing secondary recrystallized feldspar (Average grain size ~25 µm) and accessory Fe-Ni metal, troilite, merrillite, and chromite.

Geochemistry: Olivine (Fa25.3±0.5, range Fa23.6-26.3, n=50), Low-Ca Pyroxene (Fs21.3±0.3Wo1.3±0.2, range Fs20.2-21.7Wo0.9-1.7, n=47).

Classification: Ordinary Chondrite (L5).

Specimens: 23.4 g and one polished thin section on deposit at Cascadia, 39.4 g and one polished thin section on deposit at UWB, 21.7 g on deposit at UNM, 30 kg with Noureddine Bellakehal, 12 kg with Polandmet, 8 kg with Matthew Stream (with the largest piece being a 1.79 kg individual) , 7.2 kg with WangZ, 5 kg with Sean Mahoney, 3.2 kg with Karim Djoua, 3 kg with Preston Allen, 2.3 kg with Mohamed Ali Loud.

Data from:
  Table 0
  Line 0:
Origin or pseudonym:desert
Date:11 March 2023
Latitude:30° 25.885' N
Longitude:02° 49.42' E
Mass (g):75000
Shock stage:S3
Weathering grade:W0
Fayalite (mol%):25.3±0.5
Ferrosilite (mol%):21.3±0.3
Wollastonite (mol%):1.3±0.2
Classifier:D. Sheikh, Cascadia
Type spec mass (g):23.4; 39.4; 21.7
Type spec location:Cascadia; UWB; UNM
Main mass:Matthew Stream
Finder:Noureddine Bellakehal, Elhachemi Houamid, Ahmed Elmniai
Comments:CML 1647; submitted by Daniel Sheikh
   and collections
Cascadia: Cascadia Meteorite Laboratory, Portland State University, Department of Geology, Room 17 Cramer Hall, 1721 SW Broadway, Portland, OR 97201, United States; Website (institutional address; updated 28 Oct 2011)
UNM: Institute of Meteoritics MSC03 2050 University of New Mexico Albuquerque NM 87131-1126 USA, United States; Website (institutional address; updated 12 Feb 2015)
UWB: University of Washington, Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture, Box 353010 Seattle, WA 98195, United States (institutional address; updated 9 Oct 2023)
Polandmet: targoniny 30 43445 Dziegielow Poland, Poland; Website (institutional address; updated 7 May 2021)
WangZ: Ziyao Wang, Hebei GEO University North Campus, Huai An dong road 127, Shijiazhuang, Hebei Province , China (private address; updated 25 Jun 2021)
References: Published in Meteoritical Bulletin, no. 112, in preparation (2023)
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Photos from the Encyclopedia of Meteorites:
Ahmad Fairuz      
Photos uploaded by members of the Encyclopedia of Meteorites.
    (Caution, these are of unknown reliability)
Andreas Möller   
Chunliang Zhang   
Robert Smart      
Woreczko Jan & Wadi                  
Ziyao Wang            
Public domain photographs:
Daniel Sheikh      

     Recommended::   (30° 25' 53"N, 2° 49' 25"E)

     This is 1 of 11 approved meteorites from Ghardaia, Algeria
     This is 1 of 1356 approved meteorites from Algeria (plus 30 unapproved names) (plus 4 impact craters)
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