Modoc (AMNH 604)
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Wrapped in black glass
Rocks floating through the vacuum of space are chilled to well below freezing. When a meteorite passes through Earth's atmosphere, its inside stays cold even as its surface melts away. Before it hits the ground, the molten surface solidifies into a thin glassy coating, called fusion crust. Crystals of magnetite—an iron-oxide mineral—color the fusion crust black. The broken surface of Modoc shows contrast between its lighter-colored interior and its dark fusion crust.
Fell September 2, 1905
Scott County, Kansas, USA
Topic: Earth Science
Keywords: Astrogeology, Astrophysics, Atmosphere, Meteorites, Meteors