Carancas, Peru Crater Maker Meteorite, Fragment with Crust, .253g

Carancas slammed into rural Peru in September 2007. It exploded with a powerful shockwave that damaged homes and knocked people off their feet. The impact was so violent that is carved out a large 30+ feet diameter crater and the entire meteorite was pulverized into tiny fragments and dust - there are no large chunks of Carancas in existence.

Carancas is a rare H4-5 Chondrite with a concrete gray matrix - rare pieces have slickensides that resemble fusion crust. Carancas is also a witnessed fall, a hammer fall, and a crater-maker.

The specimen being offered here is a fragment with a patch of fusion crust. Fusion crust is rarely seen on these meteorites because of the friable nature of the material and circumstances around the fall area. This fragment weighs a little over 1/4 gram (.253g).


Refer to the photo. The black centimeter cube is shown for scale and is not included. You are purchasing the specimen shown. Your purchase will include a labeled gemjar for safe storage.


From the Meteoritical Society Bulletin for Carancas :

Carancas 16°39'52''S, 69°02'38''W

Carancas, Chucuito, Puno, Peru

Fall: 15 September 2007, ~16: 45 UTC

Ordinary chondrite (H4-5)

History: A large fireball was witnessed to impact near the community of Carancas, in the province of Chucuito, region of Puno in the country of Peru. It made a sizable impact crater, ~13.8 m in diameter (INGEMMET) or 11-12 m (L. Jackson, CGS). Local residents and many others have recovered numerous pieces of the impactor from the sides of the crater and the surrounding area. Mike Farmer brought several samples to the Lunar and Planetary Laboratory of the UAz for classification on October 5, 2007. The total mass is currently unknown. A preliminary report was published on the web by F. Luisa Macedo and O. José Macharé of INGEMMET, Peru.

Physical characteristics: Most specimens are without fusion crust and have a gray color with some metal and chondrules visible, although the chondrules are not easily observed. At least one specimen had two different lithologies, the second white in color, indicating it is a breccia. Numerous black shock veins, often on more than one face of a specimen, were observed. At least one large (~2 cm) metal grain was also recovered, with a thin layer of stone attached to it.

Petrography: (H. Connolly, KCCU, UAz; D. Hill, UAz, D. Schrader, UAz, K. Domanik, UAz, and D. Lauretta, UAz). One polished butt and one thin section, of two different samples, were examined. The polished butt contains some relict chondrules with well-defined margins and many textural types present. The thin section shows the rock to have experienced extensive recrystallization of the matrix with few relict chondrules present. Relict chondrules range in size from ~170 µm to 1 mm. Olivine and orthopyroxene were observed with abundant Fe, Ni-metal and Fe-rich sulfide.

Mineral compositions: Olivine (Fa18.4±0.5) and pyroxene (Fs16.1±0.2). Oxygen isotopes: (R. Greenwood, OU; two analyses) δ17O = 3.017, 2.942; δ 18O = 4.519, 4.344; Δ17O = 0.667, 0.683 (all ‰).

Classification: Ordinary chondrite (H4-5); W0, S3.

Type specimens: A total of 22 g, including 5 thin sections, are on deposit at UAz. Farmer holds 320 g.

Submitted by: Harold C. Connolly Jr., KCCU and UAz.

  • Out of stock
$25.00