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Canada: Research team discovers two new minerals in meteorite

They are based on iron, phosphorus and oxygen and now have their own names - a Canadian research team is celebrating two sensational discoveries.

In Canada, a meteorite research team has discovered at least two minerals never before found on Earth. Chris Herd, a professor in the Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences and curator of the University of Alberta’s meteorite collection, told Global News online:

“Most people in my line of work don’t find even one new mineral in their career. Here “We came across two just by examining this meteorite,” which is very “exciting.”

Herd and his research team at the University of Alberta were commissioned a few years ago to classify a 15-ton meteorite found in Somalia – the ninth largest ever found. While examining the rock, Herd said he encountered some “different, interesting minerals inside the meteorite.” Further research has now revealed that the meteorite from Somalia contains at least two new minerals.

Named after meteorite and planetary explorer

According to the report, the minerals came from a 70-gram piece of the meteorite. They are based on the composition of iron, phosphorus and oxygen. A third mineral, which may also be new, is still being studied. Both minerals were therefore synthesized by a group in France in a laboratory in the 1980s, so they were known to science. “But you don’t call them a new mineral until you’ve found them in nature,” Herd said.

The researchers named the new minerals “elaliite” and “elkinstantonite” — elaliite after the meteorite found near El Ali in Somalia, the second mineral after Lindy Elkins-Tanton, a respected planetary scientist.

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