The above image is a thin slice of a North West African meteorite put together at the All- Russian Geological Institute (VSEGI) thin section workshop. Quite interesting how they make thin sections, they cut down a thin slice of a meteorite, glue it on a microscopic slide then grind it down further so light passes through it so mineral composition research can be done on it. Got my hands on some slides and took some images with my microscope, notice the little black spherules, one theory is when a meteor breaks up and dissolves coming through our atmosphere the spherules survive because of their smallness and low surface area to become micrometeorites to land in your backyard to be collected be me as the below image.
Apparently I'm not the only one collecting meteorites from North West Africa, aka the Sahara Desert, Evil doer terrorists have finally caught on to the value of rocks from space, it's all about supply and demand, meteorites are very rare and there are tons of private collectors with lots of money willing to pay top dollar for these precious space rocks not knowing or caring that they are funding terrorist activities. Now why North West Africa meteorites? Well in the Sahara you have the perfect backdrop for finding meteorites, they stand out, no ground cover to hide the falls and the climate is such that there is no erosion for up to 50,000 years, and they even have maps of the best locals to find them, all the legal finds have to record the area in which the meteorite was found, below image.
Scientists are a little ripped about having to compete with the private collectors to obtain material for scientific research, there is a lot they can learn from meteorites such as the early formation of the solar system and our planet over 4.5 billion years ago. Some institutions such as the Smithsonian Institution won't import meteorites from North Africa knowing this area has become a haunt for smugglers and terrorists. So what can we learn from all this, well for one thing I am not a terrorist, don't belong to any cell group I'm aware of, and I have come by my NWA meteorite by legal means, but also if a meteorite lands on your car or house, it's all good, just think of the money you can make, take care of the deductible and money left over.
I'll leave you with an infrared animated image of a Sunrise I took a couple days ago.