Serving The Meteorite Community Since 2002

Bensour: The Meteorite Times Birthday Meteorite

Of all the different directions and angles of collecting rocks from space, the so-called Birthday Meteorite is the most personal. And due to the fact that meteorite falls, finds, and of course distribution and collector access, the offerings to those desiring a particular meteorite are not predictable. A Birthday Meteorite, at least according to my unofficial definition, is a meteorite whose discovery coincides with a person’s birthday. After that, the specifics are up to the collectors. The connection might be the year of fall, the day of fall, or in some lucky cases, both. For the Meteorite Times, I consider it both. Well, close enough.

Bensour is the name given to a LL6 chondrite meteorite that fell in 2002, likely on February 11th of that year. While some folks think there is still some wiggle-room about Bensour  being an actual witnessed fall, those who witnessed it to fall think it’s a witnessed fall. And that’s good enough for me.

Bensour Specimens
Since shortly after their fall, these couple dozen complete individuals of Bensour have been sleeping comfortably in this box for the past 20 years. In the meantime, Paul and Jim were busy publishing The Meteorite Time.

Anyway, congratulations to both Bensour and The Meteorite Times for two decades of service to those fans of meteorites. So for this 20 year anniversary installment of The Accretion Desk, I present to you some images of the specimens of Bensour I purchased as soon as they became available after the fall. I was stunned at how many of my tiny complete individuals were not only 100% crusted, but also highly oriented both as shields and teardrops. Under magnification, there is a lifetime to study here. Enjoy these images on this most important birthday.

Axe Head
This little fella reminds me of an axe head, if them made such things under a centimeter long. Wonderful angularity and sensual curves make this a real eyeful although not much bigger than your pupil.
Stunning training edge
Looking like a micro Death Star, this backside view of a fully crusted complete individual contains a dynamic and breathtaking artifact of its fall. Any ideas what would have caused this feature?

The closer you look, the more you see. Each of these individuals tells a story captured in the fusion crust. The texture is poetry of motion forever frozen in once-melted rock.
Glorious Sheld
Another classic shield borne from the flames of hypersonic atmospheric travel, fighting earthly air creating the perfect shape in which to push back without losing any more cosmic material than necessary.
amazing shield
This little turtle shell has an amazing shield shape and even a roll-over rim and flow lines. Small as a pea, it had as much excitement falling from space as the big boys.
Oriented Shield
This little beauty is a classic oriented shield. The above picture is of the top or leading edge, while the image below is the reverse showing all the outrageous aerodynamic turmoil bubbeling the crust.
Another classic teardrop orientation on a micro scale. The more magnification, the more stunning.

So as we enter the third decade of The Meteorite Times, let’s all give a sincere and hearty THANK YOU to Paul and Jim for making this possible!

Until next time….

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