Overview of The Lost Meteorites of Antarctica Field Campaigns

Katherine Joy, Andrew Smedley, Jane MacArthur, Wouter Van Verre, Liam Marsh, M Rose, Thomas Harvey, Romain Tartese, R H Jones, Ian Abrahams, John W Wilson, Anthony Peyton, L. Gerrish, J. Baum, G. Raymond, R. Taylor, Geoffrey Evatt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The Lost Meteorites of Antarctica project was the first UK-led Antarctic meteorite recovery expedition. The project has successfully confirmed two new high density meteorite stranding zones in the Hutichison Icefield and Outer Recovery Icefields areas, and investigated the geology of three previously unvisited Antarctic nunataks (Turner Nunatak, Pillinger Nunatak, Halliday Nunatak). The project undertook meteorite searching on the ice surface via snowmobile reconnaissance and systematic searching and developed a novel pulse induction metal detection system to search for englacial iron-rich meteorites trapped within the upper one metre of ice. The metal detection system was shown through field trials in Antarctica to be able to identify buried iron metal ‘analogue’ test samples that were buried in the ice at various depths. However, when the system was deployed over multiple days in the field it encountered strong vibrations induced from the rough ‘suncupped’ blue ice surface, causing physical damage to the setup that prevented completion of the englacial meteorite search objective. In total 121 meteorites have been recovered from the ice surface searching 2 activities, which are now curated in the UK at the Natural History Museum London and are available for scientific analysis.
Original languageEnglish
JournalMeteoritics and Planetary Science
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 20 Nov 2023

Keywords

  • Meteorites
  • Antarctica
  • dense-collection-zones
  • blue ice

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