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Santa Catharina meteorite, Morro do Rócio, São Francisco do Sul, Santa Catarina, Brazil

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Latitude & Longitude (WGS84): 26° 13' South , 48° 36' West
Latitude & Longitude (decimal): -26.21667,-48.60000
Non-native locality type:Meteorite

Iron Meteorite; Ataxite, Ni-rich (IAB-ung; D)
Found 1875; 7 tons [recognized and recovered].

Several weathered masses, the largest weighing 2,557 kg, were recovered on the island of São Francisco. First believed to be a nickel ore, total mass recovered by humans may have been as much as 25,000 kg. The meteorite is unusual in 3 important respects — it is (1) unusually nickel rich (~30 wt% of unoxidized portions), (2) unusually troilite-rich, and (3) very severely weathered. What remains of the original metallic structure is a complex polycrystalline network consisting of two or three varieties of Ni-rich metal plus minor kamacite. Schreibersite, troilite, and their multiple weathering products are ubiquitous companions. Indeed, one of these products, the secondary phosphate arupite, was first discovered in Santa Catharina fragment. In some cases, only a limonitic, but Ni-rich mass remains (the 'nickel ore'). At the other extreme, barringerite and schreibersite-enclosed fayalite are mineralogically unusual even for meteorites.

The municipality of São Francisco do Sul was initailly named as Nossa Senhora da Graça do Rio São Francisco do Sul. For this reason, in the older literature, the name Rio São Francisco is mentioned.

Over 2,500 kg is kept in Brazil's National Museum in Rio de Janeiro.

Mineral List

19 valid minerals. 1 (TL) - type locality of valid minerals.

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

van Tassel, R., Dillen, H., Vochten, R., Degrave, E. & Hertogen, J. (1992) An overlooked fragment of the Santa Catharina ataxite: Meteoritics 27: 467-469 (Sept 1992).

Goldstein, J. I., Reisner, R. J., Rancourt, D. G., Lagarec, K. & Scorzelli, R. B. (1998) The Santa Catharina Meteorite: A Cloudy Zone Microstructure Consisting of a Fine Intergrowth of Tetrataenite and Antitaenite. Meteoritics & Planetary Science 33 (4, Suppl): pages A59-A60. (July 1998)

SCORZELLI, Rosa B.. Meteorites: messengers from the outer space. J. Braz. Chem. Soc. [online]. 2008, vol.19, n.2 [cited 2014-08-16], pp. 226-23

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