Elaliite and Elkinstantonite discovered in El Ali meteorite

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Elaliite and Elkinstantonite discovered in El Ali meteorite Blog Image


Researchers in Canada have discovered two new minerals in a meteorite that landed in Somalia.

Why in News?

  • The 15-tonne El Ali meteorite was unearthed in Somalia in 2020.
  • It is the ninth largest celestial rock found on Earth at over 2 metres wide.
  • The meteorite came from an asteroid in the Asteroid Belt between Mars and Jupiter.
  • The 2-metre-wide meteorite has been well known to generations of people who live in the area, where it was named Nightfall.
  • The minerals have been named "elaliite," after the town where the meteorite crashed, and "elkinstantonite," after planetary scientist Lindy Elkins-Tanton.
  • Around 4,000 minerals are known to science, and they comprise all the rocks already on Earth.
  • Of those minerals, only about 300 were discovered in meteorites, alien rocks that crashed on Earth.


Q1) What is the difference between meteoroid and meteorite?

When a meteoroid enters Earth's atmosphere (or that of another planet, like Mars) at high speed and burn up, the fireballs or “shooting stars” are called meteors. But when a meteoroid survives a trip through the atmosphere and hits the ground, it is called a meteorite.

Source: The Hindu