Illinois meteoritewrong?

Contributed by
Apr 6, 2007

Remember the possible meteorite that hit a home in Illinois in March?

Astronomy magazine is reporting it may have been a chunk of steel from a wood chipper.

The alleged "meteorite" that smashed through a window Monday, March 12, at the home of David and Dee Riddle of 25 Partner Place, Bloomington, may be a chunk of ordinary steel plate spit out of an industrial wood-chipper about 1,000 feet (300 meters) from the Riddle home, according to James Day, a geology professor at Illinois State University who examined the reputed space rock. "We have our suspicions this may not be a legitimate meteorite."

It would have been nice of Astronomy magazine to say just why the geologist thinks it might be from a wood chipper, but that would have involved some actual reporting. Maybe Sky and Telescope will get the story.

Anyway, final results will have to wait for an analysis of the actual chemical composition, which will be fairly definitive, so we'll see. I'm hoping to hear more soon.

Tip o' the Whipple Shield to Nancy Atkinson of New Forks Media.

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