Space "Egg," Meteorite Yield All-New Minerals
Minerals date to birth of solar system.
The new discoveries—krotite and wassonite—are particularly exciting for scientists, who have found only about 60 minerals that can be traced to the solar system's beginnings 4.5 billion years ago.
"These 60 primary minerals plus a dozen ... presolar minerals are the beginning of mineral evolution in our solar system," said Chi Ma, a mineralogist at the California Institute of Technology who led the study on krotite.
"They are our ... starting materials, which evolve under different physical, chemical, and biological conditions until now—on our own planet we have about 4,500 minerals."
(See "Oldest Material in Solar System Found.")
Krotite, named for pioneering cosmochemist Alexander Krot of the University