Carbonaceous matter in the Sariçiçek meteorite

Yesiltas, Mehmet; Glotch, Timothy D.; Jaret, Steven; Verchovsky, Alexander B. and Greenwood, Richard C. (2019). Carbonaceous matter in the Sariçiçek meteorite. Meteoritics and Planetary Science, 54(7) pp. 1495–1511.



As of today, the Sariçiçek (SC) meteorite is the newest howardite and the only confirmed fall among the 17 known howardites. In this study, we present isotopic, infrared, and Raman data on three distinct pieces of the SC meteorite. Our oxygen isotopic measurements show that Δ17O values of the pieces are close to each other, and are in good agreement with other howardites, eucrites, and diogenites. The carbon isotopic measurements, which were conducted by combusting terrestrial contamination selectively at temperatures lower than 500–600 °C, show the presence of indigenous carbon in the SC specimens. The matrix of these specimens, investigated via infrared microspectroscopy, appears to be dominated by clinopyroxene/orthopyroxene, forsterite, and fayalite, with minor contributions from ilmenite, plagioclase, and enstatite. Carbon‐rich regions were mapped and studied via Raman imaging microspectroscopy, which reveals that both amorphous and graphitic carbon exist in these samples. Synchrotron‐based infrared microspectroscopy data show the presence of very little aliphatic and aromatic hydrocarbons. The SC meteorite is suggested to be originating from the Antonia impact crater in the Rheasilvia impact basin on 4 Vesta (Unsalan et al. 2019). If this is in fact the case, then the carbon phases present in the SC samples might provide clues regarding the impactor material (e.g., carbonaceous chondrites).

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