What is a meteorite look like?

Meteorites which have fallen recently may have a black "ash-like" crust on their surface. When a meteorite falls through the Earth's atmosphere a very thin layer on the outer surface melts. This thin crust is called a fusion crust. It is often black and looks like an eggshell coating the rock.
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How can you tell if you have a meteorite?

Meteorites have several properties that help distinguish them from other rocks:
  1. Density: Meteorites are usually quite heavy for their size, since they contain metallic iron and dense minerals.
  2. Magnetic: Since most meteorites contain metallic iron, a magnet will often stick to them.
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How much is a meteorite worth?

Meteorites are quite valuable, worth as much as $1,000 per gram, according to the LiveScience website. Kellyco Metal Detectors posted on eBay that it can sell for $300 per gram or more — meaning 1 pound could be worth $1 million. "Meteorites are rarer than gold, platinum, diamonds or emeralds.
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What do meteorites on Earth look like?

What Do Meteorites Look Like? Meteorites may resemble Earth rocks, but they usually have a burned exterior that can appear shiny. This “fusion crust” forms as the meteorite's outer surface melts while passing through the atmosphere.
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What is a meteorite look like in the sky?

Meteors, also known as shooting stars, are pieces of dust and debris from space that burn up in Earth's atmosphere, where they can create bright streaks across the night sky. When Earth passes through the dusty trail of a comet or asteroid's orbit, the many streaks of light in the sky are known as a meteor shower.
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Can you keep a meteorite if you find it?

In the US, if you find a meteorite on your land, you own it. And if you buy a meteorite from someone who found it on their land, you legally own it too. But the US government has stated that no matter who finds a meteorite on public lands, it belongs to the Smithsonian Institute.
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What do you do if you find a meteorite?

If you find a meteorite on the ground following an observed fall, take a photograph of it before picking it up. Look around for other specimens; most meteorites break into several pieces before hitting the ground; these pieces could be many tens of meters apart.
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Can you break a meteorite with a hammer?

Because meteorites do not contain quartz, the hardest common terrestrial mineral, they are not very hard. An ordinary chondrite can easily be smashed with a hammer.
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Do all meteorites stick to magnets?

But be careful—not all meteorites attract magnets; only the meteorites that are rich in iron (such as iron or stony-iron meteorites) will attract magnets. Some meteorites, like those from the Moon which are only made up of rocky minerals, will not be attracted to a magnet.
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What are the chances of finding a meteorite?

The odds of finding a meteorite are slim even if you see it fall. Many objects initially thought to be meteorites turned out to be space or aircraft junk, and even metallic pieces of wood chippers. The more than 50 meteorite types are grouped into three broad categories: stony, iron, and stony-iron.
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What is a 30 pound meteorite worth?

The Fifth-Largest Meteorite is Bigger than What Apollo Brought on Earth! The famous Christie's auction house is selling a chunk of the moon that is bigger than all the rocks that the Apollo astronauts previously brought back to Earth.
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Can gold be found in meteorites?

The reported gold contents of meteorites range from 0.0003 to 8.74 parts per million. Gold is siderophilic, and the greatest amounts in meteorites are in the iron phases. Estimates of the gold content of the earth's crust are in the range ~f 0.001 to 0.006 parts per million.
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How many meteorites hit the Earth every day?

Every year, the Earth is hit by about 6100 meteors large enough to reach the ground, or about 17 every day, research has revealed. The vast majority fall unnoticed, in uninhabited areas. But several times a year, a few land in places that catch more attention.
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How can you tell the difference between an iron and a meteorite?

The metal found in meteorites will be shiny and look like chrome. The appearance of the metal will not be a shiny gray sheen, that is often seen on some Earth rocks. Iron metal grains in rocks can also look like a space rock and are good indicators.
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How can I test a meteorite at home?

Most meteorites contain some iron-nickel metal and attract a magnet easily. You can use an ordinary refrigerator magnet to test this property. A magnet will stick to the meteorite if it contains much metal.
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Where would you find a meteorite?

The best hunting grounds are large, barren expanses where a dark rock — meteorites tend to be blackish — is easy to spot. Deserts, such as Southern California's Mojave Desert, and icy regions, such as Antarctica, are ideal.
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Can you find meteorites with a metal detector?

Two of the three types of meteorites (stony-iron and iron) can be located with a metal detector; it will readily pick up a signal for both of these metals. The best meteorite-hunting metal detector has both a low frequency and a sensitivity to small objects.
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What's the difference between a meteor and a meteorite?

Think of them as “space rocks." When meteoroids enter Earth's atmosphere (or that of another planet, like Mars) at high speed and burn up, the fireballs or “shooting stars” are called meteors. When a meteoroid survives a trip through the atmosphere and hits the ground, it's called a meteorite.
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What does magnetite look like?

Magnetite is black or brownish-black with a metallic luster, has a Mohs hardness of 5–6 and leaves a black streak. Small grains of magnetite are very common in igneous and metamorphic rocks. The chemical IUPAC name is iron(II,III) oxide and the common chemical name is ferrous-ferric oxide.
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What color are meteorites?

Meteors are bright and white in color, but using spectroscopy to separate the constituent colors in this light provides valuable information about their composition through their emission spectrum “fingerprint.” A meteorite may come from a comet, remnants from an asteroid collision, or another form of space debris.
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Can you melt meteorite?

By melting it, it's restructuring, relayering and changing the cosmic history of it. Reopening it kind of? Yes, but it retains its original form, so the meteorite itself isn't entirely changed, it's still the same.
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Are meteorites shiny?

The surface of a freshly fallen meteorite will appear black and shiny due to the presence of a "fusion crust," the result of frictional heating and abrasion (or ablation) of the outer surface of the rock as it passes through the Earth's atmosphere (see Pasamonte, below).
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Should you touch a meteorite?

Try not to handle any freshly fallen meteorites with your bare hands! Oils and microbes from your skin will slowly degrade the surface of a meteorite, dulling the fusion crust, contaminating the meteorite, and promoting rust.
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How much is an iron meteorite worth?

Common iron meteorite prices are generally in the range of US$0.50 to US$5.00 per gram. Stone meteorites are much scarcer and priced in the US$2.00 to US$20.00 per gram range for the more common material.
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