269 pages, 237 colour 41 b/w photos and illustrations
Language: Bilingual in English and German
Stones that fall from the sky have been known for millennia, but only during the past 200 years was their extraterrestrial origin confirmed. Today scientists know that meteorites, these inconspicuous gray or brown rocks, are the only witnesses of the origin of the solar system (and the Earth) available to us. Their composition provides invaluable information on the origin of the chemical elements, as well as when and how our planetary system formed. Meteorites: Witnesses of the Origin of the Solar System recounts the history of meteorite research, tells us how and where to find and identify them, their classification and composition, including the exciting story of meteorites from Moon and Mars, and what happens when huge meteorites, the asteroids, collide with the Earth. Plentiful colour illustrations come from the huge meteorite collection at the Natural History Museum in Vienna, which is also the oldest in the world.
- Contents: History of meteoritic research
- The Vienna meteorite collection
- Where do meteorites come from?
- Where and how are meteorites found?
- What are meteorites made of?
- Classification of meteorites
- Stony meteorites
- Stony-iron meteorites
- Iron meteorites
- Austrian meteorites
- Fossil meteorites
- Mars and Martian meteorites
- Moon and lunar meteorites
- Meteorite shower
- Formation of impact craters
- Solar system
- We all are stardust
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Franz Brandstätter is currently director of the Mineralogical-Petrographical Department of the Natural History Museum in Vienna. He has worked as a scientist at the museum since 1982 and became curator of the meteorite collection of the Natural History Museum in Vienna in 2004.
Ludovic Ferrière became curator of the rock collection and co-curator of the meteorite collection at the Natural History Museum in Vienna in 2011. He played a major role in the preparations of the new presentation of the meteorite collection in November 2012 and in reorganising the collection to modern standards.
Christian Köberl is a professor of impact research and planetary geology at the University of Vienna, Austria, and Director General of the Natural History Museum in Vienna. He is best known for his research on meteorite impact craters.