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Green Meteorite Found In Morocco May Be From Mercury 89

An anonymous reader writes in with news that a meteorite found in Morocco might be from Mercury. "The green rock found in Morocco last year may be the first known visitor from the solar system's innermost planet, according to meteorite scientist Anthony Irving, who unveiled the new findings this month at the 44th annual Lunar and Planetary Science Conference in The Woodlands, Texas. The study suggests that a space rock called NWA 7325 came from Mercury, and not an asteroid or Mars."
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Green Meteorite Found In Morocco May Be From Mercury

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  • by chill ( 34294 ) on Sunday March 31, 2013 @07:46PM (#43327321) Journal

    A fan of H2G2 you are not.

    Creator of the universe as claimed by adherents of the faith on planet Viltvodle VI. Their legend has it that the universe was sneezed out of the nose of the Great Green Arkleseizure, and they thus live in perpetual fear of the time they call "The Coming of the Great White Handkerchief."

  • Re:Dumb Question: (Score:5, Informative)

    by emurphy42 ( 631808 ) on Sunday March 31, 2013 @07:47PM (#43327329) Homepage
    From TFA:

    NWA 7325 has a lower magnetic intensity — the magnetism passed from a cosmic body's magnetic field into a rock — than any other rock yet found, Irving said. Data sent back from NASA's Messenger spacecraft currently in orbit around Mercury shows that the planet's low magnetism closely resembles that found in NWA 7325, Irving said.

    Messenger's observations also provided Irving with further evidence that could support his hypothesis. Scientists familiar with Mercury's geological and chemical composition think that the planet's surface is very low in iron. The meteorite is also low in iron, suggesting that wherever the rock came from, its parent body resembles Mercury.

  • Re:Dumb Question: (Score:4, Informative)

    by dryeo ( 100693 ) on Sunday March 31, 2013 @09:54PM (#43327929)

    Only the surface heats up during the short trip through the atmosphere with the inside still being very cold.

  • by Tastecicles ( 1153671 ) on Sunday March 31, 2013 @11:10PM (#43328193)

    any high speed impact in which the ejecta achieves escape velocity. Fairly easy to do, if you have either a large enough impactor or one moving fast enough (28,000mph is fairly slow yet fast enough to achieve escape velocity even in Earth's gravity influence).

    BTW, there are other bodies in the solar system, other than Earth, with active volcanoes. Two examples: Venus and Io. In fact, Io is the most geologically active body in the entire solar system, due solely to its proximity to Jupiter and the fact that there is a thirty Terawatt polar torus connecting the two. Io's volcanoes regularly throw debris into orbit.

It is not for me to attempt to fathom the inscrutable workings of Providence. -- The Earl of Birkenhead