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Samelia meteorite, Bhilwara District, Ajmer Division, Rajasthan (Rajputana), India

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Iron meteorite, octahedrite (IIIAB, Om)
Fell, 20 May 1921; 2.46 kg

Leaving a white trail in the sky, a fireball moved northward and burst with thundering detonations and three masses of 1,125 g, 750 g, and 587g fell within a few kilometers of each other in the Bhilwara district. After the three fragments separated, fusion crusts of varying thickness were created which interacted with minor cracks produced during deceleration. Many details of the physical features of the individual fragments have been discussed thoroughly by Buchwald (1975) and Ghosh (1994). This summary will concentrate on the common mineralogical features of this fairly normal IIIAB octahedrite. The dominant phase is, as expected, kamacite. Kamacite is found — in section —mostly as long lamellae and displays Neumann bands and other shock-hardening effects due primarily to preterrestrial shocks. Taenite is found predominantly as thin lamellae, but also blends in with plessite in regions that represent perhaps 25 vol% of the meteorite. Accessory phases include schreibersite, daubréelite, and Carlsbergite. Interestingly enough, however, no troilite is reported in the sources cited here (limited mostly to studies of the sectioned 750 g fragment). Both magnetite and wüstite are found in the fusion crust.

Samelia is among the less massive of the witnessed IIIAB falls (8th of the total 11). IIIAB irons are the most abundant group of iron meteorites representing ~27% of the more than 1,100 irons listed at the 'Meteoritical Bulletin Database' in late 2014.

As of 2000, the undivided masses of the 1,125 g and 587 g fragments and most of the sectioned 534 g Beskalai mass remain with the Geological Survey of India in Calcutta which had assumed curatorial control of the meteorite fragments almost immediately after the fall. The coordinates provided here are for the large mass.

Mineral List

8 entries listed. 6 valid minerals.

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Buchwald, V. F. (1975) Handbook of Iron Meteorites. University of California Press. 1418 pages.

Ghosh, S. (1994) Structural Characteristics of Indian Iron Meteorites (Report for the Field Season 1992-93). Geological Survey of India. (January 1994)

Grady, M. M. (2000) Catalogue of Meteorites (5/e). Cambridge University Press: Cambridge, New York, Oakleigh, Madrid, Cape Town. 690 pages.

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