Pallasites and Mesosiderites


Photo of a stunning Esquel Pallasite from Argentina
Esquel Pallasite
Photo of a beautiful Imilac pallasite from Chile
Imilac Pallasite

Pallasites are the most beautiful of all meteorites. They are stony-iron meteorites derived from an extinct planet that was detroyed during the formation of our solar system (approximately 4.5 billion years ago). They come from the boundary between the silica rich mantle and the iron-nickel core of the planet and were torn away from the planet by a catastrophic impact with another planet or asteroid. Pallasites contain olivine (Peridot) "space gems" embedded in an iron nickel matrix. When sliced thinly and polished, the stable pallasites make exceptional display pieces reminiscent of a stained-glass window in a Church! High quality pallasites are exceptionally rare and command top dollar.

Caveat emptor: Unfortunately, not all pallasites are the same quality. Some are beautiful, stable high quality pieces and then there are those that have well developed reputations as "rusters". The "rusters" typically sell for only a buck or two a gram or less, though some have been selling for up to $10 per gram! Some specimens are so unstable that, over time, they can actually crumble into pieces. "Rocks from Space" 2nd Ed. by the late O. Richard Norton discusses this issue on pages 169-170:

"The Brenham, Kansas, pallasite is particularily susceptible to lawrencite disease. It is distressing to see a beautiful slab of the Brenham pallasite, its network of nickel-iron surrounding yellow-green olivine crystals, slowly disintegrating. When the iron is attacked, the enclosed olivine loosens and drops out of the meteorite. Eventually, the iron network rusts through, fracturing the meteorite into smaller pieces."

We DO NOT recommend Brahin pallasites, Brenham pallasites or Admire pallasites! Fortunately there are a number of very stable, very beautiful pallasites available. The high quality pallasites sell for about thirty times the amount of the "rusters", but as common sense dictates, you get what you pay for. Imilac, Esquel and Seymchan are known for their stability and beauty and they command significantly higher prices than the "rusters". If you are going to invest your hard earned money in a Pallasite we recommend investing in one that won't rust away!

 



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Arizona Skies Meteorites
P.O. Box 2412
Flagstaff, Arizona 86003

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