Nomenclature Committee voted on my 2012 finds
and officially named them San Bernardino Wash
Since my first article on this subject back in January 2014, there has been a lot of effort (including additional fieldwork) to get my UCLA-classified finds from the San Bernardino Wash (SBW) strewn-field (as well as subsequent finds) approved by the Nomenclature Committee (NomCom) and included in the Meteoritical Bulletin Database. This “Update” reports on those efforts.
The UCLA classifications for my 2012 SBW finds were submitted to the NomCom. The Committee’s decision was to formally include them with earlier found stones. My finds are now officially named “San Bernardino Wash (L5)”.
This is exciting news because this confirms that there is a new, Gold Basin-style strewn-field and it is located in Southern California. What I mean by “Gold Basin-style”, is that both strewn-fields are comprised of stones with variable appearances (due to variations in weathering, shock stage, and lithology). Yet despite very pronounced differences among the Gold Basin (GB) stones in their “looks”, studies have shown that all of them are now deemed to have come from the same fall. This is now the same case for the San Bernardino Wash strewn-field.
This is a distinction that I make, for example, as opposed to a “Franconia-style” of concentration of finds. If you remember, the Franconia Area was once considered a singular strewn-field (because the H-chondrites appeared similar, superficially), but upon further study, it has been shown that there were multiple H-chondrite falls in that area. Hence, the Yucca Dense Collection Area (DCA) designation. (For more details, I refer the reader to Melinda Hutson 2013 paper – see Ref. #2)
In order to clarify what I mean by variations in Gold Basin stonys, I need to refer the reader to my 2001 abstract and my 2005 articles where I presented evidence for the heterogeniety among the meteorites found in the Gold Basin/Hualapai Wash area. It was ten years ago, but readers may remember discussions about “Gold Basin (L6)”with “high-shock-stage” and strangely dark groundmass. For those not familiar with these topics, these terms came about as a result of my examination of many dozen of meteorites from the Gold Basin Area. Two dozen candidate stones were classified, resulting in 18 classifications that were not “L4”.
The following Gold Basin (L6) & (L5) meteorites were submitted to the NomCom and were approved:
Hualapai Wash 002 – L6, S5, W3 (highly shocked)
Hualapai Wash 003 – L5, S4, W2 (highly shocked) – Finder Donald O’Keeffe
Hualapai Wash 004 – L5, S3, W2 (metal veined) – Finder Donald O’Keeffe
Hualapai Wash 005 – L6, S3, W2 (unweathered)
Hualapai Wash 006 – L6, S4, W2 (hi-shock & petrologic grade)
Hualapai Wash 007 – L6, S4, W3 (hi-shock & petrologic grade)
Hualapai Wash 008 – L5, S5, W1 (impact-melt breccia)
Hualapai Wash 009 – L6, S4, W4 (highly shocked & weathered)
Hualapai Wash 010 – L6, S4, W1 (2.35kg mass)
Hualapai Wash 011 – L6, S4, W1 (Fa 24.0+/-0.3%)
Hualapai Wash 012 – L6, S4, W3 (Fa 24.2+/-0.2%)
Hualapai Wash 013 – L6, S4, W5 (Fa 23.8+/-0.4%)
Hualapai Wash 014 – L6, S4, W3 (Fa 24.3+/-0.3%)
Hualapai Wash 015 – L6, S3, W4 (Fa 24.3+/-1.5%)
Hualapai Wash 016 – L6, S3, W1 (Fa 24.0+/-0.7%)
Hualapai Wash 017 – L6, S5, W3 (Fa 25.0+/-0.4%)
Hualapai Wash 018 – L5, S4, W1 (Fa 24.6+/-0.5%)
Hualapai Wash 019 – L5, S4, W1 (Fa 23.9+/-0.2%)
But while these approved meteorites were awaiting the next edition of the Meteoritical Bulletin, someone lodged a complaint which resulted in the Committee editing them out of the MetBull Database. The approvals were rescinded (which is the reason why there is such a large gap in the Hualapai Wash numbering sequence). All of the Hualapai Wash (L6) were deemed to be Gold Basin (L6). It was recommended that the classification for Gold Basin be revised to “L4-6”, but that never happened. Nor was it ever reconciled how the Gold Basin meteoroid could have such a range of petrologic grade and shock stage (L4-6 S3-5 W1-5) while never exhibiting any obvious brecciation.
The reason that I am dredging-up this historical muck is only to give some insight into my thought process about how I would eventually handle the classifications for my SBWash finds. I have been unfairly criticized for (initially) not submitting my SBWash classifications to the NomCom. But in my defense (after experiencing the major rejection by the NomCom of my Hualapai Wash classifications), why would I ever waste the NomCom’s time with my SBWash find classifications when they are so obviously paired to the already approved and cataloged “San Bernardino Wash” meteorite?
But when the unfair criticism became decidedly vindictive and comments turned into personal insults, I changed my mind and decided to submit my findings to the NomCom. I will now endeavor to recount the story of how my 2012 meteorite find became the officially recognized main mass of the San Bernardino Wash meteorite. But first, I would like to point-out that I have had a long history
of involvement trying to recover meteorites from this area of the Pinto Mountains known as the Dale Mining District. Here is a list of some of the activities in which I was involved:
The revised classification for Dale Dry Lake was due to my efforts.
I proved the “Pinto Mountains Iron Meteorites” to be meteor-wrongs and had them deaccessioned from the San Bernardino County Museum of Natural History collection. I am quite familiar with a wide variety of meteor-wrongs from this locality.
I proved that Nininger’s 19kg Twentynine Palms (1955) L-chondrite is the main-mass of the Pinto Mountains (both meteorites found by the same finder) by obtaining a piece of Pinto Mountains that was inherited by the nephew of the finder, and personally physically-paired it to the type-specimen of “Twentynine Palms (1955)” in the collection at ASU.
I belong to a prospectors club that has a claim in the Dale Mining District and my fellow members can vouch that I have been long urging them to keep examining their sluice-boxes for meteorites. In fact, one of the original finders of the SBW meteorite, Fred Mason (also from San Diego County) is a fellow prospector and Franconia strewn-field hunter.
I have invested a lot of time and effort conducting meteorite-recovery and outreach in this part of Southern California.
What I’m saying is that I am NOT a “late-comer to this party”!
More pointedly, I was invited to this meteorite locality by Fred Mason to join him at his gold prospect and he would show me where he found his fragments of the SBW meteorite. In my first article about SBW (which was posted earlier this year) I recounted that reunion with Fred and how I eventually recognized that one of the hot-rocks that I metal-detected was actually a fragment of that meteorite he found earlier.
Here in this article, we now pick-up the action where we had left-off in the previous article:
My initial find is important, particularly to the original finders, because it verifies their recovery story, and shows that (far from being an interloper intruding into the their claim site) I was making a significant contribution to the recovery effort. Encouraged that I actually did find a trace amount of the SBW meteorite, I returned to this locality to renew my search.
The following photos are in-situ images of some of my subsequent finds:
Eventually in 2013, I got around to cutting some of these fragments. One individual stone appeared to be much less weathered compared to the other fragments, possibly indicating very micro-environment-controlled weathering of some fragments. So, in order to determine if this “less weathered” individual was paired to the more weathered fragments, these two specimens were sampled, thin-sectioned, micro-probed, and characterized by UCLA. The resulting [similiar] classifications showed that my two specimens were paired, AND that they were paired, as well, to the earlier classified San Bernardino Wash (L5) stones already in the Meteoritical Bulletin Database (MBD).
– see table below for comparison.
The following meteorite specimens were characterized by Dr. Alan Rubin, UCLA:
Pinto Mountains — 1955 stone
|(L6 S3 W1 Fa23.8+/-0.3% n=16; low-Ca pyroxene Fs20.3Wo1.5 n=17)|
San Bernardino Wash — 2010 stone
|(L5 S2 W3 Fa24.6+/-0.6% n=7) — (UCLA type-specimen)|
Bernardino Wash“b” — 2012 find
|(L5 S2 W1 Fa23.8+/-0.4% n=14)|
Bernardino Wash“c” — 2012 find
|(L5 S1 W3 Fa24.0+/-0.2% n=24)|
Although not necessarily a part of this study, but for completeness, a sample of my Pinto Mountains specimen was thin-sectioned and characterized, as well. Even though there were some variations in weathering grade (W1-W3) and even less in shock stage (S1-S2), all of the SBW fragments found in this study had many common characteristics. This stood in contrast to my Pinto Mountains specimen which displayed a more recrystallized (less friable) groundmass, and chondrules that were more equilibrated with the matrix.
The data in the above table appeared in my earlier article on “SBWash (L5)” which was published in mid January of 2014.
So, the fact that I had made more SBWash finds and already had them CLASSIFIED by UCLA was all public knowledge by the time I made my first post to the Meteorite-List about “the new North American meteorite strewn-field” on the 20th of January 2014.
Since my post to the Meteorite-List the remainder of this unfolding story revolves around UCLA and the NomCom.
Since my post the remainder of this past year has been spent communicating with the NomCom, as well as, travelling to UCLA to have meetings with the classifier. This eventually led-up to the vote by the NomCom on a name for my finds, but in the interim there was a good deal of involvement by all parties involved, which has left UCLA and the NomCom wondering why all of this was necessary, particularly just for an ordinary chondrite?
I certainly could go into a lot more detail about all of this “involvement”, but suffice to say that the final decision to pair my finds to the San Bernardino Wash Meteorite was in no way done in a casual manner. And of course, there still remains the job of how best to document in the MBD this increase in TKW and in the additional amount of type-specimen held by UCLA. Still to be answered is what to do with the two classifications done by UCLA for my finds? Does all the classifier’s time/effort/funding not get recognized or documented somewhere? And if not, what then is the status of the “additional type-specimens”? If these specimens become divorced from their classifications, then what accurate scientific purpose do they serve?
With all of these questions still pending, I feel that it would be best to record, here, in this article how the naming of the San Bernardino Wash meteorite unfolded.
Below is a portion of the email message that I sent to the Editor of the Meteoritical Bulletin. This is how I submitted the classifications done by UCLA, and how I requested that a name be approved by the NomCom for these classified meteorites.
> Attached you will find the MB-submission forms for the meteorites that I found in 2012.
> They were all found within the San Bernardino Wash strewn-field located in
> Riverside County, CA.
> In an attempt to pair these finds to the San Bernardino Wash (L5) meteorite,
> we encountered some dissimilarities among these meteorites.
> What is at the heart of the problem is that, although I found all these meteorites
> in a several meter wide “cluster” or “splatter zone”, none of them can be
> physically-paired. Worse, my initial find is clearly a fresh, individual stone,
> and all of the subsequent finds from the cluster are weathered fragments
> which have no possibility of being related, let alone physically-paired,
> to the discovery stone. This has produced a situation,
> where an apparent pre-existing cluster of L-chondrite splatter fragments
> has had another L-chondrite mass subsequently fall onto that cluster.
> (Note: there is a remote possibility that the individual stone is from the
> same fall as the mass that produced the splatter fragments. But
> the coincidence that the (much less-weathered) individual stone was
> somehow able to singularly protect itself from weathering, is too difficult
> to reconcile. Also, the difference in shock stage and in porosity
> makes this scenario all too improbable.)
> In an effort to resolve this issue, I have brought all of my found fragments
> and their thin-sections to Dr. Rubin to compare with the type-specimens
> and thin-section (in the UCLA collection) for the San Bernardino Wash (L5)
> meteorite. After his careful comparison, and examination, as well as,
> characterization, it is our opinion that the dissimilarities outweigh the similarities
> and that these three meteorites are not paired (or at least, can NOT be
> proven to be paired) So, the more prudent course of action is to give
> separate names to each of these meteorites. For example:
> San Bernardino Wash (b) and San Bernardino Wash (c)
> Please contact me should you have any questions.
> Bob Verish
The table below is a representation of the data that appears in an “MB-submission-table”, meaning that this is the form that submitters send to the NomCom in order to request their approval for a proposed name for a meteorite. This form was attached to the above message that I sent to the Editor of the Meteoritical Bulletin, and he presented this data (and hopefully, the information in my message to him) to the Committee in order for the request to be brought up for a vote:
Please Note: This table may not be formatted correctly or show completely on your screen. Use this link to view this table correctly: http://meteorite-recovery.tripod.com/2014/nov14.htm
And below is the message sent to me from the Editor of the Met. Bull. indicating the results of the vote by the NomCom:
To: Robert Verish <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Status of job 20140913190136
Here is the current status of samples you submitted to the Nomenclature
for job 20140913190136 (San Bernadino Wash B+C):
The following meteorites have been rejected:
San Bernardino Wash (b) (343.10 g, L5) [Report date 2014 Sep 29.]
San Bernardino Wash (c) (650.00 g, L5) [Report date 2014
Job=20140913190136 (San Bernadino Wash B+C)
Submitted by Robert Verish (email@example.com)
San Bernardino Wash (b) (343.10 g, L5)
Vote: Approve=1, Disapprove=7, Abstain=0, Conflicted=0
Decision: Pending (did not pass: must be rejected or revoted)
Votes and comments
San Bernardino Wash (c) (650.00 g, L5)
Vote: Approve=1, Disapprove=7, Abstain=0, Conflicted=0
Decision: Pending (did not pass: must be rejected or revoted)
Votes and comments
The above reprint is the message sent to me from the Editor of the Meteoritical Bulletin describing the action taken by the NomCom and the results of their vote. These results indicate that my meteorites formerly known as “SB Wash (b) ” or Field ID “RSV-PMb”, and “SB Wash (c)” or Field ID “RSV-Dale” are now collectively known as the “San Bernardino Wash (L5)” meteorite. This is the formal notification that any labeled specimens currently held in collections should revise their labels and catalogs, if any of these former names or field IDs were used, and instead, to use the approved name, “San Bernardino Wash”. Fortunately for me, I did not use any other name on my labels for the specimens that I disseminated to other collections.
NOTE to collectors holding samples of my San Bernardino Wash (L5) finds – any and all statements or comments declaring that “your specimens are not San Bernardino Wash” are inaccurate and unauthorized, and should be ignored.
It was also the concensus of the Committee that the entry for San Bernardino Wash in the Meteoritical Bulletin Database (MBD) be updated to reflect these additional masses. So, I extracted the already existing information that appeared in my “MB-submission-table” (see above) and sent that condensed data to the Editor for the Met. Bull. At the request of the webmaster for the MBD, I sent that same information to him, as well. Although that data hasn’t been incorporated into the MBD, yet (at least, not at the time of the writing of this article) the following table would be a very accurate representation as to how this new information would appear:
|Basic information||Name: San|
Bernardino Wash This is an OFFICIAL meteorite name.Abbreviation: There is no official
abbreviation for this meteorite.Observed fall: No
Year found: 2010Country: United StatesMass: 1250 g
This is 1 of 5236 approved meteorites (plus 1 unapproved name) classified as L5. <ahref=”/meteor/metbull.php?sea=L5&sfor=types&stype=exact&lrec=200&srt=name”>[show all]
Search for other: <ahref=”/meteor/metbull.php?sea=&sfor=names&stype=contains&lrec=200&categ=L+chondrites+%28type+4-7%29&srt=name”>
|Approved 28 Feb 2012Revised 8 Mar 2012: updated massRevised ?? Sep 2014: updated Mass, Pieces, Main mass, Type specimens|
Writeup from MB 100:
Classification: Ordinary chondrite (L5)
History: Bob Perkins of Highland,
Writeup from MB 103:
[additional] History: On 18 April 2012
UCLA: Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics, University of
California, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1567, United States (institutional address;
updated 17 Oct 2011)<ahref=”http://www.lpi.usra.edu/meteor/MetBullCollectionInfo.php?coll=JUtas”>
JUtas: Jason Utas, United States (private address; updated 8 Jun 2010)
Verish: Robert Verish, Meteorite-Recovery Lab, P.O. Box 463084,
Escondido, CA 92046, United States;
Website (private address; updated 27 May 2009)
|References:||Published in Meteoritical|
Bulletin, no. 100, MAPS 46, in preparation (2013)
This is 1 of 243 approved meteorites from <ahref=”/meteor/metbull.php?sea=California&sfor=places&stype=exact&lrec=200&country=United+States&srt=name”>
This is 1 of 1738 approved meteorites from <ahref=”/meteor/metbull.php?sea=&sfor=names&stype=contains&lrec=200&country=United+States&srt=name”>
lists the most popular meteorites among people who looked up this
important revisions made to data for this record.
Once this new information gets recorded, what remains to be done will be the uploading of images of SBWash specimens into the Encyclopedia of Meteorites. The following images would be good examples:
— IMAGE GALLERY —
Thin-section taken from my fragment found at the Fred Mason locality:
— IMAGE GALLERY —
>Part-slices from the “W1” fragment:
— IMAGE GALLERY —
Part-slices from the “S1 W3” fragments:
Hope you enjoyed the images!
I concluded my previous SBW article by saying, “There may be more information forthcoming about this meteorite, at a later time – if more are found.” and that still remains the case, even now.
1.) San Bernardino Wash (L5) in Meteorite-Times — the January 2014 “Bob’s Findings article.
2.) Lunar and Planetary Science XXXVI (2005) Meeting (LPSC 2005). This poster presentation was titled: “ATMOSPHERIC FRAGMENTATION OF THE GOLD BASIN METEOROID AS CONSTRAINED FROM COSMOGENIC NUCLIDES”
by Kees Welten, D. J. Hillegonds, A. J. T. Jull and David A. Kring
Poster presentation at: Lunar and Planetary Science XXXVI (2005) Meeting (LPSC 2005).
This is the link to that abstract: http://www.lpi.usra.edu/meetings/lpsc2005/pdf/2352.pdf
Among other things, this abstract concluded that:
“The radionuclide results from fifteen (15) new L-chondrite specimens from the Gold Basin Area indicate that all samples are part of the same shower, which should be reclassified as an L4-6 chondrite breccia.”
3.) “Stones from Mohave County, Arizona: Multiple falls in the “Franconia strewn field”
by Melinda Hutson, Alex Ruzicka, A. J. Timothy Jull, James E. Smaller and Ryan Brown
in Meteoritics & Planetary Science (M&PS): Volume 48, Issue 3, pages 365–389, March 2013
Abstract: One of the most productive and well-sampled dense collection areas for meteorites on Earth is the “Franconia strewn field” in Mohave County, Arizona, which since 2002 has yielded hundreds of meteorites in an ellipsoidal area approximately 5 × 16 km across. Based on petrographic, mineral-chemical, and terrestrial age data, we conclude that among 14 meteorites examined, there are at least 6 and possibly 8 distinct meteorites represented, which fell over a period of approximately 0–20 kyr ago. These include equilibrated H-chondrites such as Franconia (H5) and Buck Mountains (BM) 001 (H6); H3–6 breccias such as Buck Mountains Wash and BM 004; and L6 chondrites such as BM 002 and BM 003 (which may be paired), Palo Verde Mine, and BM 005. To confidently pair such meteorites often requires thorough petrographic examination, mineral-chemical analyses, and terrestrial ages. We estimate that 50 ± 10% of the larger specimens in this area are paired, yielding a relatively high value of approximately 2.3–2.9 distinct meteorites km−2. The meteorite flux estimated for Franconia area is higher than the flux inferred from contemporary fireball data for larger masses. We suggest that one large H3–6 meteoroid fell in the area, most likely that of Buck Mountains Wash approximately 4 kyr ago, which produced an elliptical strewn field with masses generally increasing toward one end, and which raised the meteorite productivity in the recovery area.
4.) San Bernardino Wash in Meteoritical Bulletin: Entry for San Bernardino Wash – as originally published in Meteoritical Bulletin, no. 100, MAPS 46, (2014).
5.) Photo Gallery of San Bernardino Wash Meteorites on the “California Meteorites dot Com” website.
Any and all meteorite classifications that appear in this article are courtesy of Dr. Alan Rubin, UCLA.
|There are many active claims in the San Bernardino Wash area. All of these are “placer & hardrock gold claims”, and even though meteorites can NOT be included in a gold claim (because they are “non-relocateable”), there is no way to distinguish between metal-detecting for meteorites (which is allowed) from metal detecting for gold (which requires permission from the claim-holder)! This article in no way suggests prospecting on a claim without permission. For more information, see BLM Land Use Policy.)|
My previous articles can be found *HERE*
For for more information, please contact me by email: Bolide*chaser