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Thread: could this be a meteorite?

  1. #1
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    could this be a meteorite?

    A picture (albeit a poor one) can be found here.

    Is it possible that this could be a meteorite? The rock is really big, but geologists can't identify it.

    This bounder located north of Hwy. 70 in Hollow Rock, Tenn.
    has puzzled geologists who cannot type the composition of the
    rock. It was 45 ft. long, 13 ft. wide, and 12 ft. high although
    today it has sunk into the ground and been affected by erosion.
    Obviously if it's sinking, it's not simply a rock outcropping. Could a meteorite that large survive the impact without vaporizing? I couldn't unfortunately, find much on it. My father grew up in that area and I've wondered about it since I first saw the rock.

  2. #2
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    All meteorites are magnetic (as in if you stick a magnet next to them you'll see an attraction), this is usually the first step in winnowing meteorites from look-alikes. The website doesn't say if the rock was tested in this way so I don't know... :-k
    Maybe.

  3. #3
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    Only iron meteorites are magnetic. But a stony or carbonaceous one wouldn't have been that big and stayed intact; it would have disintegrated pretty high up.

    I have a very hard time believing no one can identify the rock. Sounds like a scam to me, like the Cardiffe Giant.

  4. #4
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    Well, if african swallows were migratory, we'd have one possible answer.

  5. #5
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    I didn't real the article but wouldn't a chunk that size leave one hella crater? What was the estimated size and composition of the one that blew a hole in arizona?

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by skrap1r0n
    I didn't real the article but wouldn't a chunk that size leave one hella crater? What was the estimated size and composition of the one that blew a hole in arizona?
    I think it was about 150 feet wide.

  7. #7
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    Re: could this be a meteorite?

    Quote Originally Posted by Avatar28
    A picture (albeit a poor one) can be found here.
    The first set of dimensions on that page say it was "45 ft. long, 13 ft. wide, and 12 ft. high" at one time. Later on the webpage, it says "456 feet long, 13 feet wide, and 12 feet high." That must be 45.6 feet long.

    "Geologist have studied the rock and do not know what minerals it contains, since no other rock of its kind has been found." My guess is it's leaverite.

  8. #8
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    I would expect a good sized crater, yeah. Then, too, the fact that it appears to be sinking in the soil makes one wonder too. Still, there aren't any cliffs or bluffs or anything nearby for it to have fallen from. It IS in something of a low land though as I recall (haven't been there in awhile).

    Here's an aerial photo of the area.
    linky No idea exactly where the rock is in there.

  9. #9
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    Some suggestions on what to do with "leaverite".

    http://www.korrnet.org/kgms/june-00/june00-9.htm

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by jt-3d
    Well, if african swallows were migratory, we'd have one possible answer.
    =D>

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Avatar28
    Then, too, the fact that it appears to be sinking in the soil makes one wonder too. Still, there aren't any cliffs or bluffs or anything nearby for it to have fallen from. It IS in something of a low land though as I recall (haven't been there in awhile).
    Is it sinking, or is the soil around it rising?
    0 1 1 0 1 0 0 1 1 0 0 1 0 1 1 0 1 0 0 1 0 1 1 0 0 1 1 0 1 0 0 1 1 0 0 1 0 1 1 0 0 1 1 0 1 0 0 1 0 1 1 0 1 0 0 1 1 0 0 1 0 1 1 0 ...
    Skepticism enables us to distinguish fancy from fact, to test our speculations. --Carl Sagan

  12. #12
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    I'm sure they should have said that no geologist has bothered to determine what minerals it contains, rather than no geologist can.

    It's pretty straighforward to identify minerals. Especially with the sample in hand, and taken to a lab.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by 01101001
    Quote Originally Posted by Avatar28
    Then, too, the fact that it appears to be sinking in the soil makes one wonder too. Still, there aren't any cliffs or bluffs or anything nearby for it to have fallen from. It IS in something of a low land though as I recall (haven't been there in awhile).
    Is it sinking, or is the soil around it rising?
    Good question, I don't know. That article was about all I could find on the entire internet and it's not exactly scientific. I'm more inclinded to believe that the bit about no one being able to determine the makeup to be more of a bit of local lore than anything. It's not exactly a big city, less than 1000 people and not really anything there anymore, so not surprising that I couldn't find much on it.

    Hmm, I wonder if anyone in the geology dept at Vanderbilt would know anything about it.

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