Core formation in the making! - Macquarie University Planetary Research Centre

Core formation in the making! - Macquarie University Planetary Research Centre

Associate Professor Tracy Rushmer (Macquarie University) and Associate Professor Sandra Piazolo (Macquarie University), together with Dr. A. Tomkins (Monash University) spend 24 hrs on the 6th August 2015 at the Australian Synchrotron to image a suite of 12 meteorites showing different stages of silicate-metal melt segregation.

Meteorites are messengers from the earliest solar system as they bear witness to processes that were active at that time, including the formation of the terrestrial planets. One of the first and most important steps in planet formation is the separation of metal from silicate, forming the planet’s iron rich core. Meteorite characteristics in terms of spatial, chemical and orientation relationships offer a “snap-shot” into these processes. This work is part of an innovative project, combining high-resolution 3D tomographic imaging, recently obtained 3D orientation neutron diffraction data and informed 2D spatial-chemical-orientation data allowing us to investigate planet formation processes.

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