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Northwest Africa 4590 meteorite (NWA 4590), Béchar, Béchar Province, Algeria

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Latitude & Longitude (WGS84): 30° 19' 0'' North , 4° 56' 34'' West
Latitude & Longitude (decimal): 30.31694,-4.94278
GeoHash:G#: evkkrx0c0
Other regions containing this locality:Northwest Africa Meteorites
Sahara Desert, North Africa
Locality type:Meteorite Fall Location
Meteorite Class:Angrite meteorite
Meteoritical Society Class:Angrite
Metbull:View entry in Meteoritical Bulletin Database
Köppen climate type:BWh : Hot deserts climate

Angrite (Differentiated Achondrite)
Found 2006, 213 g

Northwest Africa 4590 (NWA 4590), a small purchased meteorite find with a fresh crust and mild weathering stains, appears to be a separate and unpaired meteorite — consisting only of impact-shattered fragments of a single meteorite fall. NWA 4590's principle constituents — fassaite [33 vol%], anorthite [28 vol%], fayalitic olivine [14 vol%], and kirschsteinite [5 vol%] — are the usual major constituent of almost all angrites. Its overall inventory of minor constituents is also quite similar to those reported for other angrites. However, unlike almost all recovered angrites, NWA 4590 appears to lack ferric iron. It also appears to have been more completely characterized than several other more massive and/or earlier recovered angrites. Rhönite and pigeonite,for example, have been reported and, more recently, a previously unidentified 'Ca-rich Silico-Phosphate' has been identified as a Si-rich apatite.

NWA 4590 is one of only 23 recorded angrites — a group of differentiated and quite ancient meteorites with high-temperature melt products and isotopic ratios similar to their prototype, Angra dos Reis (stone). While Angra dos Reis is the only angrite fall, it is somewhat unclear how many separate angrite falls are in our collections. 17 angrites from Northwest Africa have been listed at the Meteoritical Bulletin Database (March 2015), but whether they represent only a few falls or, say, 10-12 separate falls is not evident at this time. [Many NWA meteorite fragments have been distributed as purported 'separate' meteorites to enhance sales]

A word of caution. Some reports of apparent Fe-Ni metal in angrites have been labelled as 'kamacite' in published abstracts without accompanying compositional data. As at least some of the metal in angrites is Ni-poor (<2 wt%), it is not clear that such uncharacteristically Ni-poor iron should be given the conventional label for meteoritic iron. Meteoritic iron with an invariable higher Ni-component is found in almost all chondrites and irons. Rare instances of Ni-poor iron in meteorites are reported almost exclusively as tiny secondary phases in some differentiated achondrites.

Mineral List

11 valid minerals.

Meteorite/Rock Types Recorded

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Regional Geology

This geological map and associated information on rock units at or nearby to the coordinates given for this locality is based on relatively small scale geological maps provided by various national Geological Surveys. This does not necessarily represent the complete geology at this locality but it gives a background for the region in which it is found.

Click on geological units on the map for more information. Click here to view full-screen map on Macrostrat.org

66 - 145 Ma

ID: 3189694
Mesozoic sedimentary rocks

Age: Cretaceous (66 - 145 Ma)

Lithology: Sedimentary rocks

Reference: Chorlton, L.B. Generalized geology of the world: bedrock domains and major faults in GIS format: a small-scale world geology map with an extended geological attribute database. doi: 10.4095/223767. Geological Survey of Canada, Open File 5529. [154]

Late Cretaceous
66 - 100.5 Ma

ID: 3308996

Age: Late Cretaceous (66 - 100.5 Ma)

Lithology: Sedimentary

Reference: Thiéblemont, D. (ed.). New edition of the 1:10,000,000 geological map of Africa. CGMW-BRGM. [190]

Early Cretaceous
100.5 - 145 Ma

ID: 3133954
Early Cretaceous undifferentiated

Age: Early Cretaceous (100.5 - 145 Ma)

Reference: Asch, K. The 1:5M International Geological Map of Europe and Adjacent Areas: Development and Implementation of a GIS-enabled Concept. Geologisches Jahrbuch, SA 3. [147]

Data and map coding provided by Macrostrat.org, used under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License

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Sort by Year (asc) | by Year (desc) | by Author (A-Z) | by Author (Z-A)
Connolly Jr., H. C. et al. (2007) The Meteoritical Bulletin, No. 92, 2007 September. Meteoritics & Planetary Science 4 (9): 1647-1694. (Sept 2007)
Kuehner, S. M. & Irving, A. J. (2007) Primary Ferric Iron-Bearing Rhönite in Plutonic Igneous Angrite NWA 4590: Implications for Redox Conditions on the Angrite Parent Body. American Geophysical Union, Fall Meeting 2007, abstract #P41A-0219. (Dec 2007)
Mikouchi, T., Sugiyama, K., Satake, W. & Amelin, Y. (2011) Mineralogy and Crystallography of Calcium Silico-Phosphate in Northwest Africa 4590 Angrite: Lunar and Planetary Science Conference XLII. LPI Contribution No. 1608, pdf#2026. (Mar 2011)

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