Rare meteorite found near Lake Huron
One of the world's rarest meteorites has been discovered by an amateur rock hound strolling along a boulder-strewn shore of Lake Huron.
Carl Young, a 78-year-old retired pipefitter from London, Ont., stumbled across the unusual boulder last April while looking for driftwood on a beach near Southampton, a small port about 230 kilometres northwest of Toronto.
An avid rock hound for 25 years, Mr. Young immediately suspected his find was something unique when he stooped to lift it and found it surprisingly heavy for its size - slightly smaller than a basketball.
He lugged the 2.5-kilogram rock home to his carport, where it sat for three weeks until he tested it and discovered it was not only magnetic, but when cleaned, gleamed with bright green crystals the size of fingertips surrounded by highly reflective metal.
Mr. Young hauled his find to the University of Western Ontario in London, Ont., where it was positively identified as a rare class of meteorite found only three times in Canada.
"I had a suspicion what it was," Mr. Young said. "It's a once in a lifetime opportunity."
Researchers at UWO suspect that, like most other meteorites, Mr. Young's discovery originated in the asteroid belt, a region filled with thousands of rocks that revolve around the sun between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter.
What has them excited is not its origin but its composition. The rock is a pallasite, made up of a rare combination of metallic and silicate minerals that has been found only 52 times throughout the world.