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Northwest Africa 1296 meteorite (NWA 1296), Northwest Africa Meteorites

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Non-native locality type:Meteorite
Meteorite Class:Angrite meteorite
Meteoritical Society Class: Angrite
Metbull:View entry in Meteoritical Bulletin Database

Angrite, quenched (achondrite)
Find, 2001; 810 g

The Northwest Africa 1296 meteorite is a lens-shape stone purchased in Bouarfa, Morocco. The fresh appearing stone had remnants of its original fusion crust as well as a shiny gray surface lacking the 'desert varnish' found on many dessert finds. The three primary phases — olivine, anorthite, and pyroxene (fassaite) [28, 32, & 34 vol%, resp.] — are similar in many resects to those of most angrites. However, the meteorite is finer-grained than many angrites. Intergrown olivine-anorthite intergrowths are separated by later crystalizing fassaite chains. Kirschteinite (3 vol%) and minor amounts of pyrrhotite, fluorapatite, and titanomagnetite are also present. Orangish weathered carbonates are found, but some small white carbonates in small vesicles appear to be primary. It has been suggested that carbonate-containing angrite melts may be analogous to terrestrial carbonatite melts and could thus provide vital clues for understanding the unusual angrite minerals and crystallization sequences.

NWA 1296 is one of ~15 recovered angrite meteorites. [As of early August 2015, twenty-three angrites were listed at The Meteoritical Society's 'Meteoritical Bulletin Database' , but eight of them appear to be fragments of a single fall.] Six of the angrites — including NWA 1296 — cooled very quickly. Several of these 'quenched angrites' have crystallization ages of ~4.62 Ga, making them among the most ancient known rocks of the solar system. In a preliminary Pb-Pb study Amelin & Irving (2011) report an even older 4.64 Ga crystallization age for NWA 1296.

Mineral List

8 valid minerals.

Meteorite/Rock Types Recorded

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This page 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.


Russell, S. S. & 6 others (2003) The Meteoritical Bulletin, No. 87, 2003 July: Meteoritics & Planetary Science 38 (7, Suppl.): A189–A248.

Jambon, A., Barrat, J. A., Boudouma, O., Fonteilles, M., Badia, D., Göpel, C. & Bohn, M. (2005) Mineralogy and petrology of the angrite Northwest Africa 1296. Meteoritics & Planetary Science 40 (3) :361–375. (March 2005).

Amelin, Y. & Irving, A. J. (2011) Lead Isotopic Age of the Quenched Angrite Northwest Africa 1296 (abstract): 74th Annual Meteoritical Society Meeting, 5196.pdf. (Sept 2011).

Keil, K. (2012) Angrites, a small but diverse suite of ancient, silica-undersaturated volcanic-plutonic mafic meteorites, and the history of their parent asteroid: Chemie der Erde, geochemistry 71:191-218.

Grady, M. M., Pratesi, G. & Moggi-Cecchi, V. (2015) Atlas of Meteorites. Cambridge University Press: Cambridge, United Kingdom. 373 pages.

External Links -NWA1296@MetBullDatabase -Jambon et al. (2005) - Amelin & Irving (2011).

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