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New mineral 'Edscoite' is born

IMA approves meteorite mineral as a new mineral

A meteorite was discovered in 1951 in Weatherburn, a small Australian gold mining town.

The meteorite was 210g in size and had a dark, red glow. It attracted great attention from scientists around the world and analyzed what minerals were in it.

Scientists named this black, reddish rock mass as a 'Wedderburn meteorite,' and began analyzing the minerals contained in it to determine how it was formed and where it came from.


New mineral 'Edscoite' is born

Matter in meteorite, transformed into earth mineral

Much research has been conducted in various places so that two-thirds can be broken down into pieces.

According to the 'Science Alert' on the 26th, the analysis could be completed recently. This is because the crystal structure of an unfamiliar mineral can finally be read.

The reading of crystal structures in mineralogy is a very important process. Even if it is made of the same material, it is very different from diamond and graphite depending on the crystal structure.

In relation to the new crystal structure, Caltech's School of Earth and Planetary Sciences and UCLA researchers reported on August 28th that they have added Edscottite, Fe5C2, a new iron carbide mineral from the Ni- rich Wedderburn IAB iron meteorite.

In the paper, the researchers succeeded in reading naturally occurring minerals somewhere in space and named it Edscottite.

According to Professor Chi Ma, who led the research, the mineral was iron-carbide, a form never seen on Earth.

Iron carbides are carbides that combine iron and carbon to form in hot steel. The strength varies depending on the distribution and shape, and the gloss, strength, brittleness and magnetism are different. This is to say that Ed Scoite was created in a very different space environment than Earth.

According to the results of this study, scientists found that the 'Weatherburn meteorite' consists of kamacite, schreibersite, taenite, troilite, and edscote. Could confirm.

This reveals the identity of the red and black 'Weatherburn Meteorite', which began in 1951 in 68 years.

According to the findings, the International Mineralogical Association (IMA), which is in charge of administering minerals, has adopted Ed Scotite as a new mineral. Minerals produced in space have been approved for artificial production on Earth.

IMA approval enables industrial production

Scientifically, the discovery of 'edconite' is very important.

Geoffrey Bonning, a planetary scientist at the Australian National University, who attended the study, said, “In the center of an ancient planet, a planet that was subjected to high heat and high pressure would have been unbearable and decomposed into numerous meteorites and dispersed into space.” .

"One of the scattered meteorites came to Earth, and one of its ingredients was Edsconike," the professor explained.

Dr. Edward Scott, a meteorologist and cosmochemist at the University of Hawaii, who has watched the study, is particularly emphasizing the formation of Edconite.

As explained in the California Institute of Technology paper, the ability to structurally determine the crystal structure during the atom formation of a substance means that the same minerals can be produced on Earth, not in space.

According to the International Mineralogy Association (IMA) regulations, which are in charge of minerals, no official name can be given to any mineral unless it is a substantial mineral from nature.

However, as a result of the collaboration between Caltech and UCLA, the natural (structural) generation of new minerals found in meteorites has been made possible, allowing mineral registration by IMA and the production of 'edconite' by humans. .

Officials said that iron carbide, edsconike, is a combination of iron and carbon that can be used to produce artificial minerals within 10 years, and the industry can use it in various ways depending on the newly developed application.

Stuart Mills, chief curator of the Australian Museum of Victoria, says the museum houses more than half a million minerals, but only 6,000 are naturally produced.

This indicates that various minerals are artificially made based on the minerals produced in nature.

As such, the discovery of new minerals through meteorites foretells the possibility of creating new minerals on Earth.


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