Giant Meteorite Discovered in China

Space.com reports the discovery of a large, partially buried meteorite in Xinjiang. The rock may weigh as much as 30 tons.

“This is a huge iron meteorite,” Zhang [Baolin, of the Beijing Planetarium] said in footage from China Central Television. “It may be the second largest iron meteorite, which can cause a sensation in China and also attract attention from [the] world’s meteorite fields. It comes from outside solar system and it is of great appreciating value and of more scientific value.” […]

The discovery could represent a very exciting find for the scientific community, if the rock can be confirmed as a meteorite, said Meenakshi Wadhwa, director of the Center for Meteorite Studies at Arizona State University.

“If this can indeed be verified as a bona fide iron meteorite, then it would certainly be an important find,” Wadhwa told SPACE.com in an email interview. Since most meteorites were formed close to [about] 4.6 billion years ago, when the solar system was formed, any newly discovered meteorites (regardless of their size) have the potential to provide scientists with some unique insights into the formation and earliest history of our solar system.”

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