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Scientists find unique, water-rich Martian meteorite
Posted: Fri, Jan 4, 2013, 5:47 AM ET (1047 GMT)
Martian meteorite NWA 7034 (NASA) A meteorite discovered in Africa over a year ago is from Mars, but is unlike any other Martian meteorite found to date, scientists reported this week. The meteorite, designated NWA 7034 and nicknamed "Black Beauty," was found in the Sahara Desert in 2011. Its composition matches closely with rocks on the surface of Mars, but is different from other "SNC" Martian meteorites, leading scientists to conclude this meteorite is the first from the Martian crust. NWA 7034 formed about 2.1 billion years ago, around the beginning of the most recent geologic period on Mars. The meteorite also contains more than 10 times as much water as other Martian meteorites, perhaps due to interaction with water in the Martian crust.
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