Sorry, you need to enable JavaScript to visit this website.

Physical properties of ordinary chondrites

Daniel Ostrowski
Asteroid Population Characterization
Delivered As: 
Abstract Text: 

Ames Meteorite Characterization Laboratory is examining the physical proprerties of a diverse selection of meteorites. Measurements of the physical properties of meteorites are essential to help determine the physical characteristics of their parent asteroids. The study of the physical properties can also provide information that is useful to the understanding of meteoroid behavior in the atmosphere and help determine methods to deflect potentially hazardous asteroids. A large variety of material enters the atmosphere as seen by the over 45 classes of meteorites (Sears D.W.G. et al. 2016). Each meteorite will be processed by the full suite of measurements: density, porosity, emissivity, and acoustic velocity. Densities and porosities provide clues to the physical environment in which the meteorites were lithified and how they evolved. Macke 2010 and others have studied the density and porosity of many meteorites, ranging from 3 to 4 g/cc for stony and up to 7 to 8 g/cc for iron (Britt and Consolmagno 2003). The other properties have not been as extensively studied. Emissivity provides a way of characterizing the meteorite and asteroid parent bodies and the amount of thermal energy the body is emitting. The emissivity studied is from 25 °C up to atmospheric entry tempatures, to see how meteorites react to entering the atmosphere. Acoustic velocities, both longitudinal and shear, give insights to the wave propagation through a meteorite and providing additional indications of the internal structure and porosity. The range of longitudinal velocities previously published for H chondrites is 2.66 to 6.99 mm/μs (Flynn G.J. 2004, Yomogida K. and Matui T. 1983). We present the current status of meteorite physical property measurements from our lab.

Giulia Ellena (Università di Torino, Department of Psychology)
SSERVI Identifier: 

Recognizing that science and human exploration are mutually enabling, NASA created the Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI) to address basic and applied scientific questions fundamental to understanding the Moon, Near Earth Asteroids, the Martian moons Phobos and Deimos, and the near space environments of these target bodies. As a virtual institute, SSERVI funds investigators at a broad range of domestic institutions, bringing them together along with international partners via virtual technology to enable new scientific efforts."