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Vaca Muerta Meteorites
Museum Specimens
Item # ME6V12131569
Vaca Muerta Mesosiderite 49g
"Romulus"
$179.00
"Marcellus"
a 15 gram natural (just as it was found) Vaca Muerta Mesosiderite Meteorite measuring 33mm x 24mm x 15mm
Retrieved from a fall in a strewnfield near Taltal, Chile, in the Atacama Desert in 1988.  Mesosiderite (MES) Eucrite
This meteorite is natural, un-cut and un-polished with no coatings.
Click on any photo to see a larger version
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Vaca Muerta Mesosiderite                  
Total Mass: exceeding 3782 kg
Found: 1861
Location:  (25°50'S, 70°23'W) 60 km S.E. of Taltal, Atacama desert, Chile
Strewnfield: 11.5 km long, 2.1 km wide

Vaca Muerta (Dead Cow in Spanish) is a differentiated silicate and metal rich meteorite containing many silicate and
eucrite inclusion around 10% in volume surrounded by a matrix of mesosiderite composition. For this meteorite to
show such a varied and disrupted character, the Vaca Muerta parent body must have been impacted several times by
different types of meteorites to break up, mix, and fuse the various constituent pieces. The metal inclusion of
iron-nickel alloy in the mesosiderites, exhibits the same properties as octahedrites (from Mike Reynolds, 2001 Falling
Stars pg 77). All the Vaca Muerta metallic inclusions show areas with finest Widmanstatten pattern of 0.1mm width
band, being the rarest pattern inside of the octahedrites groups.
Vaca Muerta was found in 1861 by a mining entrepreneur, who correctly identified it as celestial in origin. Later
visitors to the area concluded that the heavy, metallic pieces were silver or silver ore, (native iron is extremely rare)
and they are known to have removed large quantities (probably more than 2000 kg) to the mining town Copiapo.
About 20 fall-sites had been molested by miners, the rest were virgin. The precise location was unknown for about
100 years, until rediscovered by Edmundo Martinez, in 1985.
In 1988, Holger Pedersen, Claudio Canut de Bon Senior, Claudio Canut de Bon Junior and Harri Lindgren searched
the strewnfield of the mesosiderite Vaca Muerta, which was originally found in 1861. The area, 11.5 km long, 2.1 km
wide, is located about 60 km southeast of Taltal, Chile, in the Atacama Desert. It has yielded 80 meteorites with a total
mass exceeding 3782 kg. Most fragments were found in an undisturbed state, but some had been broken by
prospectors. The present studies, in connection with historical records, indicate that the original mass of Vaca Muerta
exceeded 6 metric tons. One impact feature, somewhat modified by man, consists of a 10.5-m diameter, 1.7-m deep
hole, without an uplifted rim. Small masses were scattered up to 85 m from the hole. The search party spent about 100
man-days in the desert, searching for fragments, and excavating them with great care. They recovered the large
fragment No. 13, of which the main body, 46 kg, is on display at La Serena Mineralogical Museum, Chile. Although
most of the material Claudio Canut De Bon found was donated to scientific institutions for curation (and NOTHING
traded), he kept some samples for his personal collection. Good thing too...the strewnfield is now empty.
We were lucky enough to obtain three specimens from Claudio Canut De Bon's personal
collection from his son Marcelo Canut De Bon in 2006. We kept one for our personal
collection and are offering some for sale. "Google search" Claudio Canut De Bon for more
information on this exciting find.

Claudio Canut De Bon "named" all his meteorites
as you will see in the descriptions below
I asked Marcelo what meaning the names had, his response...
An e-mail excerpt from Marcelo Canut De Bon;

"Hi, Dan. Thanks for writing. Your items should arrive shortly by the way. The specimens get their particular name, (besides their
MAIN name: VACA Muerta, of course) from different sources and inspirations, but the branch collection I am putting here this
month, have names from Saints for the most part (there are a few they are from another branch from my collection with more
peculiar names). Let me know when yours arrive. Thank you again!"
Marcelo Canut de Bon
Item # ME6V107002
Vaca Muerta Mesosiderite 51g
"Genevieve"
$204.00
From the Personal Collection of Claudio Canut De Bon, Universidad de La Serena, Chile

"Genevieve"
A super 51 gram natural (just as it was found) Vaca Muerta Mesosiderite Meteorite measuring 47mm x 34mm x 22mm
Retrieved from a fall in a strewnfield near Taltal, Chile, in the Atacama Desert in 1988.  Mesosiderite (MES) Eucrite
This meteorite is natural, un-cut and un-polished with no coatings.

Mesosiderites

are a class of stony-iron
meteorites consisting of
about equal parts of
metallic nickel-iron and
silicate.

They are breccias with
an irregular texture,
silicates and metal
occur often in lumps or
pebbles, as well as in
fine-grained
intergrowths.

The silicate part
contains olivine,
pyroxenes and Ca-rich
feldspar, and is similar
in composition to
eucrites and diogenites.
Item # ME6V0209002
Vaca Muerta Mesosiderite 9g
Sliced and Polished
$36.00
Item # ME6V0209001
Vaca Muerta Mesosiderite 9g
Sliced and Polished
$36.00
Vaca (sliced) in plastic display box...an
excellent choice for small display size
approximately 20 x 15 x 13mm
(This polish will need to be maintained
as it oxidizes in normal atmosphere)
Vaca (sliced) in plastic display box...an
excellent choice for small display size
approximately 20 x 17 x 12mm
(This polish will need to be maintained
as it oxidizes in normal atmosphere)
From the Personal Collection of Claudio Canut De Bon, Universidad de La Serena, Chile