in Solar System’s Oldest Planetary Objects
Carnegie Institution for Science | 2020 Aug 03
New work led by Carnegie’s Peng Ni and Anat Shahar uncovers new details about our Solar System’s oldest planetary objects, which broke apart in long-ago collisions to form iron-rich meteorites. Their findings reveal that the distinct chemical signatures of these meteorites can be explained by the process of core crystallization in their parent bodies, deepening our understanding of the geochemistry occurring in the Solar System’s youth. ...
Many of the meteorites that shot through our planet’s atmosphere and crashed on its surface were once part of larger objects that broke up at some point in our Solar System’s history. The similarity of their chemical compositions tells scientists that they originated as part of common parent bodies, even if they arrived here centuries apart and in vastly different locations.
Deciphering the geologic processes that shaped these parent bodies could teach us more about our Solar System’s history and Earth’s formative years. To truly understand what makes our planet capable of sustaining life, and to look for habitable worlds elsewhere, it is crucial to understand its interior—past and present. ...
Heavy iron isotope composition of iron meteorites explained by core crystallization ~ Peng Ni et al
- Nature Geoscience (online 03 Aug 2020) DOI: 10.1038/s41561-020-0617-y