It is difficult to work in Antarctica but the area is a rich source of scientific discoveries. This is a great place to “hunt” meteorites. Recently, five alien stones were discovered in the icy expanses.
It is because of the natural conditions in Antarctica that meteorites can be found. Antarctica is a large icy desert with limited meteorite weathering potential. After a short search, the international team returned with five additional samples, one of them weighing 7.6kg.
The local environment is also helpful, as it allows you to see the dark stones in space against endless snow fields. Meteorites can be buried under snow but the glaciers below them don’t allow them too much depth. They are usually either near the surface or on the surface of the snowfields.
Maria Valdes, a researcher at both the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago, claims that approximately 45,000 meteorites were brought from Antarctica over the past century. Only about 100 of these meteorites are of the same or greater size as the largest sample collected by the expedition. The scientist says that the size of meteorites is irrelevant because even objects of microscopic size could be extremely valuable in this instance. Large meteorites are very rare, and this is an interesting event.
Four scientists mostly from Europe attended the mission. After the analysis of satellite imagery, potential impact sites of celestial body were identified. Although the trip was scheduled for the Antarctic summer and the search took place at the end of December, the temperature in the study area was about -10 °C. There were some days when it was not possible to see the full extent of the area.Chicago was colder than Antarctica”, searching on snowmobiles for days on end and hiking through the ice fields, followed by sleeping in tents, provided work for wear and tear.
The Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences will study the five meteorites discovered by the team. Potentially containing micrometeorites, deposits will be split among expedition members to be used for research at their universities.