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The story of its discovery started in the area of Morasko village (at present, a district of Poznań) in 1914. During works connected with digging trenches for Prussian soldiers, Dr. Cobliner, the sergeant, found a heavy and rusty lump of iron in the ground, which weighed about 78 kilograms. The find was handed over to the Astronomical Observatory in Spandau near Berlin, where it was examined.

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The Morasko meteorite fell about five thousand years ago during the biggest rain of iron meteorites. The ellipse shaped spread was a few kilometres long, and it ranged from the north to the west and from the north-west to the south-east.
The story of its discovery started in the area of Morasko village (at present, a district of Poznań) in 1914. During works connected with digging trenches for Prussian soldiers, Dr Cobliner, the sergeant, found a heavy and rusty lump of iron in the ground, which weighed about 78 kilograms. The find was handed over to the Astronomical Observatory in Spandau near Berlin, where it was examined. During the examination, it was found to be an iron meteorite (rudaceous octahedrite). More of the meteorite's fragments were discovered in the interwar period.
In the years 1950–55, a search for other fragments was carried out among the local population. Another fragment was found then. It weighed 78 kilograms and was discovered by a farmer Józef Oleksy during ploughing works in 1947. Then, hollows were noticed in the ground located near those places where other fragments of the meteorite had been found.
In the 1970s, the hollows were examined in detail, and a hypothesis was formulated about their meteoric origin. The group of seven craters, located in the area of 55 hectares, was recognised as a nature reserve in 1976. It is worth mentioning that the Morasko Meteorite nature reserve is one of fourteen such places on Earth, where extraterrestrial matter is presented, along with results of its fall.
In the 1990s, studies on the Morasko meteorite were intensified. They were carried out by the Institute of Geology of the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań, and their results were published in both national and international publications. In September 2006, Krzysztof Socha, a meteorite searcher of Kielce, found another fragment of this meteorite (he called it Rudy [Russet]). After removing pollutants, it weighed 164 kilograms. In 2012, the meteorite searchers Magdalena Skórzewska and Łukasz Smuła located one more fragment of the meteorite. When it was extracted, the block weighed 300 kilograms. Once it was cleansed and conserved, it weighed 261 kilograms. At present, it is the biggest fragment of the Morasko meteorite found in Central Europe (it is estimated that more than 150 of blocks and lumps were found so far, of a total weight of almost 2 tons).

Elaborated by Barbara Kietlińska-Michalik (The Geological Museum of the Institute of Geological Sciences, Polish Academy of Sciences), editorial team of Małopolska’s Virtual Museums, © all rights reserved

Bibliography:
Największy deszcz meteorytów żelaznych w Europie Środkowej, ed. Andrzej Muszyński, Poznań 2012,
Jerzy Pokrzywnicki, I. Meteoryty Polski. II. Katalog meteorytów w zbiorach polskich, "Studia Geologica Polonica", XV (1964).

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If you happen to see a falling meteorite – a guide…

Following the advice of Professor Andrzej Manecki, an eminent cosmologist and expert on meteorites, we present a short briefing addressed to those lucky ones who will witness the fall of cosmic material.

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Following the advice of Professor Andrzej Manecki, an eminent cosmologist and expert on meteorites, we present a short briefing addressed to those lucky ones who will witness the fall of cosmic material:
– You should note the general location and the direction of the meteorite’s fall
– The time between noticing the object and its collision with the Earth’s atmosphere is merely a few seconds
– If you manage to reach the landing site, you can start studying the object immediately without fear of being burnt (as meteorites cool down very quickly)
– The location of the crater created in the place of the fall should be noted (is it straight or at an angle)
– It is advisable to note some characteristics of the fall (the brightness of the meteorite during the fall, the surrounding sounds – e.g. possible explosions)
– You should inform the appropriate bodies – e.g. The Department of Mineralogy and Geochemistry of AGH University of Science and Technology

It is also recommended to inform the editorial team of Małopolska’s Virtual Museums, who will be sure to publicise the event thoroughly.

Elaborated by Anna Besrestecka (Editorial team of Małopolska’s Virtual Museums),
Licencja Creative Commons

 This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Poland License.

Bibliography:
Andrzej Manecki, Meteoryty, pyły kosmiczne i pyły księżycowe, Warszawa-Kraków 1975.

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Olympic meteorite

During the Olympic Games in Sochi the organisers announced that participants who won a gold medal on 15 February would receive a special meteorite medal containing a piece of the Chelyabinsk space rock. The rock, which had fallen a year before in especially dramatic circumstances, injured about 1,600 people and caused damage to several thousand buildings.

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During the Olympic Games in Sochi the organisers announced that participants who won a gold medal on 15 February would receive a special meteorite medal containing a piece of the Chelyabinsk space rock. The rock, which had fallen a year before in especially dramatic circumstances, injured about 1,600 people and caused damage to several thousand buildings. In the end, the idea was not implemented as the International Olympic Committee would not accept any adding of extra elements or signs to medals handed out to the Olympic champions.
Yet it was not the first idea of the Russians to make use of cosmic material – the authorities in Chelyabinsk together with local businessmen decided to raise funds for the repairs of the damage by selling a special product – perfume with the scent of the Chelyabinsk meteorite. A small bottle of perfume with a typical stone and metallic scent can be found, among others, at online auctions. Car air fresheners having the predominant note of metal, stone and ozone have been also available for sale…

Elaborated by Anna Berestecka (Editorial team of Małopolska’s Virtual Museums),
Licencja Creative Commons

 This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Poland License.

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Cosmic dust…

Every year approximately one million tons of cosmic material enter the Earth’s atmosphere. Not only in the form of meteorites, which in fact constitute an insignificant percentage of falls, but primarily in the form of cosmic dust. Traces were found in Małopolska and among other places it has been detected in the Wieliczka Salt Mine.

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Every year approximately one million tons of cosmic material enter the Earth’s atmosphere. Not only in the form of meteorites, which in fact constitute an insignificant percentage of falls, but primarily in the form of cosmic dust. Traces were found in Małopolska and among other places it has been detected in the Wieliczka Salt Mine.
However, progressive air pollution makes it hard to study this cosmic dust material as it is more and more difficult to separate it from the substances which are a side effect of human industrial activity.
But a very simple experiment can be done – you only need to dissolve rock salt in water and then bring a magnet nearer to the dissolved sediment. The particles that cling to the magnet are cosmic dust – traces of cosmic material.

Elaborated by Anna Berestecka (Editorial team of Małopolska’s Virtual Museums),
Licencja Creative Commons

 This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Poland License.

Bibliography:
Andrzej Manecki, Meteoryty, pyły kosmiczne i pyły księżycowe, Warszawa-Kraków 1975.

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“Morasko” iron meteorite

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