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Sacramento Mountains meteorite, Eddy Co., New Mexico, USA

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Iron meteorite, Octahedrite (IIIAB, Om)
Find, 1890; 237.2 kg, single mass

A moderately large (~80 x 60 x 20 cm) and weathered mass of Fe-Ni metal (~8% Ni) was found in a small depression on top of a limestone hill. Both regmaglypts and erosion pits are found on the surface, but a well-preserved Widmanstätten pattern was revealed by etching. Neumann bands common in the kamacite are sites of selective corrosion for some distance from the surface. Taenite and plessite (~ 35 vol%) have been partially decomposed with martensite present. Schreibersite occurs mostly as boundary precipitates and as tiny irregular blebs inside the plessite fields. Shock-melted troilite is common as large and small nodules and is accompanied by ~10% daubréelite. Euhedral or near-euhedral chromite is frequently present with one unusually large (5 x 2 x 1.5 cm) crystal reported.

Buchwald (1975) concludes that Sacramento Mountains has been deformed by preterrestrial shock followed by partial annealing before suffering additional alterations during atmospheric entry and subsequent erosion at the earth's surface. While a moderately massive iron, it is only the 36th most massive of the Meteoritical Society's listed 299 IIIAB irons [late 2014]. IIIAB irons are the most common irons representing nearly 30% of all classified irons.

The largest portion of the mass (24.7 kg) has been held at the American Museum of Natural History in New York. Other moderately large masses are held at the Vatican, the Field Museum in Chicago, and elsewhere.

Mineral List

10 entries listed. 7 valid minerals.

The above list contains all mineral locality references listed on This does not claim to be a complete list. If you know of more minerals from this site, please register so you can add to our database. This locality information is for reference purposes only. You should never attempt to visit any sites listed in without first ensuring that you have the permission of the land and/or mineral rights holders for access and that you are aware of all safety precautions necessary.


Foote, W. M. (1897) Note on a new Meteorite from the Sacramento Mountains, Eddy Co., New Mexico: American Journal of Science (4th Series), Volume 3: 65-66.

Ramdohr, P. (1973). The Opaque Minerals in Stony Meteorites. Elsevier Publishing Company: Amsterdam, London: New York. 245 pages.

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

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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