Iron Meteorites with Low Cosmic Ray Exposure Ages

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Science  25 Mar 1966:
Vol. 151, Issue 3717, pp. 1524
DOI: 10.1126/science.151.3717.1524


Analysis of argon-38 and argon-39 produced by cosmic rays in four iron meteorites gives normal amounts of the radioactive product argon-39 and abnormally low amounts of stable argon-38. This indicates that these meteorites were exposed to cosmic rays for unusually short periods of time. These exposure times are one or two orders of magnitude shorter than those for the average iron meteorite, and they overlap the periods found for chondrites. It is suggested that perhaps 20 percent of the iron meteorites have similarly short exposure periods.

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