The most common mineral on earth is now – finally – got a name. Thanks a meteorite, ironically.
It sounds a bit strange, but it minerals which occur in greatest abundance on our planet has – until now – had no name. Not officially, anyway.
That which complicate the matter, the rules of the International Mineralogical Association. These requires that a mineral must first named after its crystalline form has been studied. And since the current mineral is stable only at pressures corresponding to that of several hundred kilometers deep, this has not allowed itself to be made.
Similar pressures may arise when asteroids collide with each other.
With luck falls remnants then down to earth and now researchers have found a tiny, tiny sliver of the mineral in a meteorite that tumbled down in the Australian desert in the dawn of time. Space merciless cold believed to have “captured” the atoms in a crystal.
The analyzes, reported in Science, shows that the splint consists of the same minerals that make up around 70 percent of the lower mantle. This jacket is between 660 and 2900 kilometers deep in the Earth’s interior. This is equivalent to not less than 38 percent of the earth’s entire volume, making the mineral to the most common on our planet.
The mineral has been named bridgmanit, in honor of the mineral pioneer and Nobel laureate Percy Bridgman .