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Proceedings Paper

Meteorites and microbes: meteorite collection and ice sampling at Patriot Hills, Thiel Mountains, and South Pole, Antarctica
Author(s): Paul P. Sipiera; Richard B. Hoover; Gregory A. Jerman
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Paper Abstract

In 1998, the Patriot Hills area of the Ellsworth Mountains of Antarctica was selected by the Planetary Studies Foundation (PSF) of Algonquin, Illinois USA as a potential site for the collection of meteorites. The eight person expedition searched several sites in and around the Patriot Hills, but met with little success in finding meteorites. In January 2000, the PSF chose to continue its efforts in the Thiel Mountains, an area of known meteorite concentrations. The goal was to collect as many meteorites as possible by extending the previously searched blue ice areas at the Moulton Escarpment. Earlier search teams collectively recovered 36 meteorites. In the five days of fieldwork at the Moulton Escarpment, the PSF team collected 19 confirmed stone meteorites, and 2 possible achondrites. Upon return to Patriot Hills another small stone meteorite, consisting of 6 small fragments totalling 1.7 grams, was collected in the Morris Moraine where a 23 mg meteorite fragment was found in 1998. In addition, ice samples were collected at Patriot Hills, Thiel Mountains, and the South Pole. The presence of several micro-organisms has been identified in these samplings and will be evaluated as possible contaminants of Antarctic meteorites.

Paper Details

Date Published: 29 December 2000
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 4137, Instruments, Methods, and Missions for Astrobiology III, (29 December 2000); doi: 10.1117/12.411617
Show Author Affiliations
Paul P. Sipiera, William Rainey Harper College (United States)
Richard B. Hoover, NASA Marshall Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Gregory A. Jerman, NASA Marshall Space Flight Ctr. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4137:
Instruments, Methods, and Missions for Astrobiology III
Richard B. Hoover, Editor(s)

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