The latest Martian meteorite discovery which has been christened as black beauty could be sample from major background of rocks on the surface of Mars.
The rock in question is the 4.4 billion-year-old space stone, the AKA NWA7034 which was discovered in the Moroccan desert several years ago. Latest research lends credence to the claims that the Black Beauty is much akin to vast swathes of Mars Crust.
When the scientists started probing deeper into the piece of Martian meteorite in 2011, its chemical signature confirmed that it had come from the Martian surface. However unlike other meteorite which were found on Earth were designated as SNC meteorites (shergottites, nakhlites, or chassignites). They’re mainly igneous rocks made of cooled volcanic material. However the chip from Black Beauty consisted of different types of rocks which were welded together. It helped to explain the Martian “dark plains,” large areas of the planet’s surface that have only a thin layer of red dust.
Black Beauty was a mashup of different types of rocks welded together in a basaltic matrix and its sedimentary ingredients match the chemical makeup of rocks which has been analyzed by Mars Rovers. Therefore scientists are now sure that Black Beauty was is a piece of Martian crust — the first such sample to make it to Earth according to researcher Kevin Cannon of Brown University.
Cannon along with his colleague Fred Mustard obtained a chip of the rock from Carl Agee at the University of New Mexico and analyzed the fragment using different spectroscopic techniques.
Cannon said, “What we wanted to do was get an average for the entire sample. That overall measurement was what ended up matching the orbital data. Mars is punctured by over 400,000 impact craters greater than 1 km in diameter. Because brecciation is a natural consequence of impacts, it is expected that material similar to NWA 7034 has accumulated on Mars over time.”
The scientists expect to obtain more knowledge about the planet’s formation and Mars’ dark plains.
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