Right after the Mifflin Meteorite fell in SW Wisconsin in April 2010 the Robert A. Pritzker Assistant Curator of Meteoritics and Polar Studies Dr. Philipp R. Heck coordinated an international study to determine the time it spent in space and to calculate its size in space before it got ablated and broke apart in our atmosphere.
Song lyrics aside, even when you catch a bit of stardust, it may take years to sort out what you've got.
Field Museum researchers have joined with scientists around the globe to find contemporary interstellar dust gathered by NASA's Stardust space mission launched more than a decade ago.
This story was featured on the December 14, 2010 show Scientific Chicago on WTTW Channel 11.
Private meteorite collector and Collections & Research Committee member Terry Boudreaux donated to the Field Museum two specimens of the iron meteorite Gebel Kamil that formed a 45-m-wide impact crater in the southwestern corner of Egypt (East Uweinat Desert) near the Sudanese and Lybian border. The crater was discovered through Google Earth in 2009 on a Cretaceous sandstone surface; the impact has occurred less than 5000 years ago.
The meteorite that fell in Wisconsin on April 14, 2010 is now officially named Mifflin by the Meteoritical Society and its classification as an ordinary chondrite meteorite of type L5 is now approved by the Meteoritical Society. The name of a meteorite unambiguously refers to the fall location.
Shortly after the April 2010 fall of the Mifflin meteorite in Wisconsin Robert A. Pritzker Collections Manager for Meteoritics and Polar Studies James L. Holstein went to the Iowa-Grant elementary school in the meteorite strewnfield to teach schoolchildren how to find meteorites. While the students were performing a demonstration for meteorite search after being instructed by Holstein, one of them was very lucky found a piece of Mifflin on the school ground (see photos on the right). The educational event, the meteorite search and the lucky find by the kid was covered live by CNN.