The Largest Meteorite Ever Found in the United States
|The Largest Meteorite Ever Found in the United States. The Willamette Meteorite on display at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City.|
The Willamette Meteorite weighs 15.5 tons. This iron meteorite, which was found in Oregon. It is the largest meteorite found in North AmericaThe Willamette Meteorite is an iron-nickel meteorite discovered in the U.S. state of Oregon. It is the largest meteorite found in North America and the sixth largest in the world.
There was no impact crater at the discovery site; researchers believe the meteorite landed in what is now Canada or Montana, and was transported as a glacial erratic to the Willamette Valley during the Missoula Floods at the end of the last Ice Age (~13,000 years ago).
The Willamette Meteorite weighs about 32,000 pounds (15,000 kg). It is classified as a type III iron meteorite, being composed of over 91% iron and 7.62% nickel, with traces of cobalt and phosphorus. The approximate dimensions of the meteorite are 10 feet (3 m) tall by 6.5 feet (2 m) wide by 4.25 feet (1.3 m) deep.
The Willamette Meteorite contains higher concentrations of various metals that are quite rare in Earth's crust. For example, Iridium, one of the least abundant elements in Earth's crust, is found in the Willamette Meteorite at a concentration of 4.7 ppm, thousands of times more than its crustal abundance.
|The Willamette Meteorite in 1911, a few years after it was found.|
The Willamette Meteorite weighs 15.5 tons. This iron meteorite, which was found in Oregon. It is the largest meteorite found in North AmericaRead also:
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