IMCA Insights – December 2007
Welcome to the December issue of IMCA Insights and our third meteorite show report for this year, Munich 2007. The show - the biggest mineral fair in Europe and a major event for most meteorite people - was opening its gates from November 2 to 4, 2007, and there were many visitors from all over the world. Soon after my arrival on Friday noon I ran into Mike Farmer and Jim Strope from the United States, Dima and Sergey from Russia, and many other friends from all over the globe.
Martin Altmann, Olaf
Gabel, Thomas Grau, Norbert Classen, and
Of course, there were many more friends and familiar faces from Germany and Europe: I ran into my old friend and mentor Dr. Juergen Otto, I met along the way with Harald Stehlik and Christian Anger from Austria, shaked hands with my friends from Switzerland, Peter Marmet and Marc Jost, and had a chat with "Chief Impactor" Olaf Gabel, "Mr. La Mancha" Thomas Grau, and "Iron Man" Mirko Graul, just to name a few. As always, it took some time to arrive at the first dealers stall, and to check their new offers.
IMCA Members Martin
Altmann & Stefan Ralew of "Chladni's Heirs"
Many of the European dealers offered a remarkable selection of rarities, this year: witnessed falls, unusual classifications, and excellently prepared specimens. As always, Moritz Karl's table stood out, as well as Bruno's and Carine's stall with a great selection of historic meteorites, and rare types from the hot deserts of Northwest Africa. Sergey Vasiliev had his own table, this year, and he also had a fantastic selection of planetary meteorites, historic pedigree specimens, and some new Russian finds that were never up for sale, before.
A Fantastic Full
Slice of the New Lunar Meteorite NWA 4881
Another highlight was the table of "Chladni's Heirs" were I was welcomed by Martin Altmann, Stefan Ralew, and their fabulous new planetary specimes. Just have a look at the fantastic full slice of the new lunar NWA 4881 (provisional number, and probably paired with NWA 3163, and NWA 4483), and you will see what I mean. Besides that they also has another new lunar (mare?) basalt, provisionally named NWA 4898. This new lunar meteorite had first been mistaken for an angrite until more detailed studies revealed its lunar origin. It's currently under extensive study, and I'm sure that this unusual rock will be good for a few more surprises, and revelations.
IMCA Members Hans
Koser & Jim Strope having Fun at the Show
Martin and Stefan also had some great specimens of the "La Mancha" eucrite on consignment from my old friend and fellow meteorite hunter Siegfried Haberer who couldn't make it to the show, this year. "La Mancha" is certainly one of the most beautiful meteorites ever, and it was selling at prices that are more typical for martian meteorites, or exceedingly rare historic falls. Of course, the original discoverer of the "La Mancha" eucrite, Thomas Grau, also had some fantastic specimens for sale - one more beautiful than the other.
A huge but crumbly
Carancas Specimen at Hans Koser's Table
Talking about the most recent witnessed meteorite falls: of course there were also specimens of the Carancas meteorite on some dealers tables, that giant chondrite which excavated a large crater near Lake Titicaca, Peru, earlier this year. This meteorite is extremely friable, and leaves crumbs on your hands upon each touch. There were only a few larger specimens for sale at the show, most at Hans Koser's table who showed a great selection of extraordinary Carancas specimens. The large fragment pictured above was surely one of the highlights of this years show.
Mohammed Hmani, Marc
Jost, Ali Hmani, and more Meteorites
Another new witnessed fall, often called the "Mali" meteorite, could be seen at several Moroccan tables. It's a heavily brecciated ordinary chondrite with a fresh black fusion crust. This seems to be another "big fall", and several dealers had quite a few kilos of this neat material for sale - along with a great selection of unclassified carbonaceous chondrites, and HED achondrites from NWA.
Interior View of the
New "Mali" Chondrite Fall - a Neat Breccia!
As always, Mohammed and Ali Hmani had the widest selection of rare meteorites from Northwest Africa - there were "Mali" samples as well as angrites, lunar and martian samples and a few new stones that looked more than promising. Although I'm usually more interested in new planetary meteorites my attention was caught by a huge new CV3 with extraordinary CAIs (Calcium-Aluminium-Inclusions). The supply from NWA is surely drying up, but nevertheless the goodies keep on coming! Another stone that caught my interest was a newly classified lodranite from NWA, an ultra-rare type and another sample of the acapulcoite-lodranite parent body.
A Fantastic Oriented
Millbillillie Individual at Ali Hmani's Table
To my utter surprise, Ali also had a few remarkable samples that were not of NWA provenance, such as a large slice of the new Russian pallasite Pallasovka, a huge Allende, and a marvellous oriented Millbillillie eucrite individual. Great Millbillillies could also be seen at an Australian dealer's table, at a most reasonable price. There were many more dealers and meteorites all over the show, but since I had arrived only at Friday noon, and had to leave early on Saturday morning I hadn't the time to check into each and every hall, and each and every stall. My apologies to those that I didn't visit, or that I didn't mention. I just wish I could have visited, and mentioned you all.
The "Fliegerbräu" in
Feldkirchen, near to the Fairground
A wise man said: "Man is a social animal" - a fact that also holds true for most meteorite people. Besides all the old and new meteorites, sales and trades, the Munich show is always a great place to socialize with fellow collectors, and to talk about our favorite subject. More than 50 dealers and collectors joined the annual Meteorite Party Friday night at the "Fliegerbräu", an old brewery and restaurant in the nearby village of Feldkirchen, and we all had lots of fun - something we should repeat, next year. See you all in Munich in 2008!
Friday Night's Big
Meteorite Party at the "Fliegerbräu"