Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date


Publication Title

52nd Lunar and Planetary Science Conference


A major research objective within asteroid science is to identify the source bodies of the meteorites. So far, possible or probable parent bodies have only been identified for a few meteorite types. These meteorite types include the H-type ordinary chon-drites [1,2], HEDs [3,4], pallasites [3], and mesosider-ites [5]. Identifying the parent bodies of meteorites helps to determine the location within the solar nebula where the geochemical processes, recorded in meteorites, took place. This has significantly increased our understanding of the evolution of the solar nebula and the early so-lar system [6].

Among the many meteorite types whose parent bodies are unknown are the L-chondrites. L-chondrites exhibit evidence of a shock event that occurred around 470 Ma, which implies that the L-chondrites resulted from an impact event which may have disrupted the L-chondrite parent body. This evidence is corroborated by fossil L-chondrite meteorites found in Ordovician sedimentary rocks dating to the same time period [7-12]. This suggests that if the source outcrop of the L-chondrites stills exists today, it is within an asteroid family.

The Massalia asteroid family has been suggested to be a possible source of the L-chondrites [13]. We are currently testing this hypothesis. So far, we have observed fourteen Massalia family asteroids, analyzed their spectra, and interpreted their spectra to determine their meteorite analogues in an effort to see whether or not the analogues support our hypothesis. This abstract reports the initial results for seven of these bodies.


Presented at the 52nd Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, held virtually, 15-19 March, 2021. LPI Contribution No. 2548, id.1597