Report

An Anomalous Basaltic Meteorite from the Innermost Main Belt

Science  18 Sep 2009:
Vol. 325, Issue 5947, pp. 1525-1527
DOI: 10.1126/science.1174787

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Abstract

Triangulated observations of fireballs allow us to determine orbits and fall positions for meteorites. The great majority of basaltic meteorites are derived from the asteroid 4 Vesta. We report on a recent fall that has orbital properties and an oxygen isotope composition that suggest a distinct parent body. Although its orbit was almost entirely contained within Earth’s orbit, modeling indicates that it originated from the innermost main belt. Because the meteorite parent body would likely be classified as a V-type asteroid, V-type precursors for basaltic meteorites unrelated to Vesta may reside in the inner main belt. This starting location is in agreement with predictions of a planetesimal evolution model that postulates the formation of differentiated asteroids in the terrestrial planet region, with surviving fragments concentrated in the innermost main belt.

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