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Neuschwanstein I meteorite (Neuschwanstein meteorite), Füssen, Allgäu, Swabia, Bavaria, Germany

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Latitude & Longitude (WGS84): 47° 31' 30'' North , 10° 48' 3'' East
Latitude & Longitude (decimal): 47.525, 10.8008333333
Name(s) in local language(s):Meteorit Neuschwanstein I, Füssen, Allgäu, Schwaben, Bayern, Deutschland
Other regions containing this locality:The Alps, Europe

Enstatite Chondrite, low-iron [EL6; S2; W0/1]
Fall, 6 April 2002; 6.17 kg, 3 stones
Neuschwanstein I, found July 14, 2002; 1750 g
Fall captured by European Fireball Network

At 10:20 PM local time a meteoroid (mass >100 kg) entered the earth’s atmosphere while traveling at ~21 km/sec. The ensuing bolide became much brighter than the full moon, was seen from 500 km, and recorded by cameras in three countries. Loud sounds and infrasounds were soon heard and/or recorded over a somewhat smaller region as the quickly decelerating meteoroid ablated and broke into several large fragments near the German-Austrian border. Between 14 July 2002 and early autumn 2003, three fragments of the Neuschwanstein Enstatite meteorite were recovered (Neuschwanstein I, II, III — 1750, 1625, 2840 g, respectively). Although falling only a couple of kilometers apart, the separate fragments were collected in two countries by separate individuals and subsequently experienced somewhat disparate treatments. We will concentrate here on Neuschwanstein I which was recovered only 99 days after its fall and has remained entirely under public stewardship. It is to be noted, however, that studies of mineralogy, chemistry, isotopes, and short-lived radioactive elements make it abundantly clear that the three stones are part of a single meteorite.

As an EL Chondrite, Neuschwanstein consists of dominant Enstatite (> 60 wt.%) accompanied by Kamacite (> 20 wt.%), Troilite (10 wt.%) and a variety of rare, very reduced mineral phases (~5 wt.%). Iron content is a little higher than in most EL6 Chondrites. Neuschwanstein has only a few chondrule relics and is unbrecciated which accounts for its EL6 petrologic type. Neuschwanstein may have lost more volatiles (e.g., Zinc) through metamorphism than most other EL chondrites.

Neuschwanstein has experienced only mild pre-terrestrial shock (level S2). An unidentified Ca-phase indicates that Neuschwanstein I, specifically, has experienced mild weathering (W0/1).

Mineral List

9 valid minerals.

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Russell et al., (2003). The Meteoritical Bulletin, No. 87, 2003 July, Meteoritics & Planetary Science 38 (7, Sup): A189-A248.

Oberst, J., Heinlein, D., Köhler, U., & Spurny, P. (2004). The multiple meteorite fall of Neuschwanstein: Circumstances of the event and meteorite search campaigns, Meteoritics & Planetary Science 39, #10, 1627-1641. (Oct 2004)

Russell, S.S., Zolensky, M., Righter, K., Folco, L., Jones, R., Connolly Jr, H. C. , Grady, M. M. & Grossman, J. N. (2005). The Meteoritical Bulletin, No. 89, 2005 September, Meteoritics & Planetary Science 40 (9, Sup): A201-A263. (Sept 2005)

Kohout, T , Donadini, F , Pesonen, L J & Uehara, M (2010) Rock Magnetic Studies of the Neuschwanstein EL6 Chondrite : Implications on the Origin of its Natural Remanent Magnetization. Geophysica, vol 46, no. 1-2, pp. 3-19.

Zipfel, J., Bischoff, A., Schultz, L., Spettel, B., Dreibus, G., Schönbeck, T. & Palme, H. (2010) Mineralogy, chemistry, and irradiation record of Neuschwanstein (EL6) chondrite: Meteoritics & Planetary Science 45 (9): 1488-1501. (Sept 2010)

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