|Title:||Small Antarctic micrometeorites: A mineralogical and in situ oxygen isotope study|
|Authors:||M. Gounelle, C. Engrand, M. Maurette, G. Kurat, K.D. McKeegan, and F. Brandstatter|
|Publication:||Meteor. Planet. Sci., v. 40, p. 917‐932.|
We have investigated the texture, bulk chemistry, mineralogy, as well as the anhydrous minerals oxygen isotopic composition of 67 small Antarctic micrometeorites (AMMs) collected at Cap Prudhomme, Antarctica, and belonging to the currently poorly studied size fraction 25‐50 µm. When compared to larger (50−400 µm) micrometeorites collected at the same site in Antarctica with the same techniques, no significant differences are found between the two populations. We therefore conclude that the population of Cap Prudhomme AMMs is homogeneous over the size range 25−400 µm. In contrast, small AMMs have different textures, mineralogy, and oxygen isotopic compositions than those of stratospheric interplanetary dust particles (IDPs). Because small AMMs <50 µm) overlap in size with IDPs, the differences between these two important sources of micrometeorites can no longer be attributed to a variation of the micrometeorite composition with size. Physical biases introduced by the collection procedures might account for these differences.