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A Pallasite or a fake

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#1 oblako

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Posted 08 February 2013 - 09:26 PM

A few years ago I was given a Pallasite, Esquel.It was my birthday present.
Here's the rock
http://farm9.staticf...523c543b3_k.jpg
A week or so ago I bought a microscope and started looking at my Esquel over it.
First I discovered a few green bubbles:

http://farm9.staticf...f83c80f93_b.jpg

I emailed the image to a few friends and even to a few scientists. The ones who responded told me it was probably contamination, but then I discovered more green bubbles
http://farm9.staticf...6a6566c76_b.jpg
and more green bubbles
http://farm9.staticf...51064ac59_h.jpg
and then I discovered a few unopened bubbles:
http://farm9.staticf...d1bb9602d_b.jpg
and a strange red thing with something green inside
http://farm9.staticf...4e7779e66_b.jpg
and then there were more bubbles, and more red and green things.
The excitement grew. It no longer looked as contamination. The bubbles were completely embedded in the olivine crystals! Now we were discussing that my Esquel should be send for a micro-probe to extract the gases that survived in the bubbles inside olivine crystals. Well, guess what, my olivine crystals were not olivine crystals at all.
They were just a clear glue!

The rock was bought from a famous dealer Robert Haag. I thought he could be trusted. Now I am not sure what is real in my Esquel, if anything, but the worst thing is that I am not sure who could be trusted now, and also hours I spent studying that contaminated glue under a microscope, taking pictures of it, emailing the pictures to others, these hours was just a lost time.

#2 csa/montana

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Posted 09 February 2013 - 12:48 AM

Who examined it, and determined it was glue?

#3 peter scherff

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Posted 09 February 2013 - 05:45 AM

Hi Oblako,

Welcome to the Space Rocks forum.

I don't pretend to know the history of your Esquel, however...Many rocks are "stabilized" prior to cutting. Stabilizing frequently means that the rock is soaked in a thin "epoxy". One common product used is Opticon. Another possibility is that your sample may have been "conserved". Many pallasites have been repaired by removing the rust that may form on them. As a part of the conservation process lose olivine crystals may be glued back in using a "super" glue. Unfortunately it is also common practice not to disclose any of these treatments. I would not be surprised if the person who sold the meteorite to you was unaware of what had been done to the meteorite.
You still have a beautiful Esquel.

Thanks,

Peter

#4 oblako

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Posted 09 February 2013 - 08:09 AM

Thanks for welcoming me to the forum.

Robert Haag who sold me Esquel glued it himself. He does not deny it. I understand that some Pallasites should be stabilized, but a buyer should have known about this before buying, has he not?
Besides a few people who themselves used a microscope to look at Pallasites saw my images, and nobody has ever seen anything like that before.

#5 peter scherff

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Posted 09 February 2013 - 08:41 AM

Hi Oblako,

I agree with you. Unfortunately, that is not the practice in the meteorite collecting community. Ideally we would know everything that has been done to the samples in our collections. Most collectors don't ask about the processing history of their meteorites. Until collectors, as a whole, start to ask about the treatments of meteorites we won't be offered this information. I am sorry to say that Bob was just following "industry standards".

Thanks,

Peter

#6 oblako

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Posted 09 February 2013 - 11:09 AM

See, the problem is that I do not know where is a genuine olivine and where is a contaminated glue. For example, there are a few places with some kind of round formations like this one
http://farm9.staticf...d06b1009a_b.jpg
It is neat, but what is it, an olivine or a glue?

#7 peter scherff

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Posted 09 February 2013 - 11:17 AM

Hi,

I wish I could tell you what that is. Perhaps you could reverse the "conservation" process. Both Opticon & super glue dissolve in acetone. You could try soaking your sample in acetone. However you might find that many of the crystals fall out. Good Luck.

Peter






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