Perceptive of the pyroxene‐bearing micrometeorites and their relation to chondrites

Meteoritics & Planetary Science (in Press) Link to Article []
1National Institute of Oceanography (Council of Scientific and Industrial Research), Dona Paula, Goa 403004, India
2Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory, 72 Lyme Road, Hanover, New Hampshire 03755–1290, USA
Published by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons

We studied 149 pyroxenes from 69 pyroxene‐bearing micrometeorites collected from deep‐sea sediments of the Indian Ocean and South Pole Water Well at Antarctica, Amundsen‐Scott South Pole station. The minor elements in pyroxenes from micrometeorites are present in the ranges as follows: MnO ~0.0–0.4 wt%, Al2O3 ~0.0–1.5 wt%, CaO ~0.0–1.0 wt%, Cr2O3 ~0.3–0.9 wt%, and FeO ~0.5–4 wt%. Their chemical compositions suggest that pyroxene‐bearing micrometeorites are mostly related to precursors from carbonaceous chondrites rather than ordinary chondrites. The Fe/(Fe+Mg) ratio of the pyroxenes and olivines in micrometeorites shows similarities to carbonaceous chondrites with values lying between 0 and 0.2, and those with values beyond this range are dominated by ordinary chondrites. Atmospheric entry of the pyroxene‐bearing micrometeorites is expected to have a relatively low entry velocity of <16 km s−1 and high zenith angle (70–90°) to preserve their chemical compositions. In addition, similarities in the pyroxene and olivine mineralogical compositions between carbonaceous chondrites and cometary particles suggest that dust in the solar system is populated by materials from different sources that are chemically similar to each other. Our results on pyroxene chemical compositions reveal significant differences with those from ordinary chondrites. The narrow range in olivine and pyroxene chemical compositions are similar to those from carbonaceous chondrites, and a small proportion to ordinary chondrites indicates that dust is largely sourced from carbonaceous chondrite‐type bodies.


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