HomeSpace NewsIron meteorites point to millions of years of chaos in early solar...

Iron meteorites point to millions of years of chaos in early solar system

Asteroid collisions in the early solar system exposed their iron cores to space, allowing them to cool rapidly. (Image credit: NASA/JPL–Caltech)

A great demolition derby, with a chaotic mess of asteroids and forming planets constantly slamming into each other, took place in the early solar system between 7.8 million and 11.7 million years after the sun formed, according to a new analysis of iron meteorites that were once part of metallic asteroid cores.

An international team of researchers analyzed isotopes of palladium, silver and platinum in 18 iron meteorites found on Earth to better understand the evolution of their parent bodies. Metallic asteroids contain dense iron cores, and iron meteorites originate from these cores, blasted off by collisions with other asteroids.

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