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Meteoritics & Planetary Science—More Cosmochemical Results from the Stardust Mission to Comet Wild 2

M&PS journal

Meteoritics & Planetary Science released a special issue in April, 2012 (volume 47, no. 4) on results related to the analyses of NASA's Stardust mission samples collected in the aerogel and aluminum foil. The Stardust results stand as proof of large-scale mixing in the early Solar System over hundreds of AUs.

Though a subscription is needed to access the 19 articles online, the M&PS Table of Contents and abstracts are available to everyone. Here are the titles available:

Overview of the rocky component of Wild 2 comet samples: Insight into the early solar system, relationship with meteoritic materials and the differences between comets and asteroids

Comprehensive examination of large mineral and rock fragments in Stardust tracks: Mineralogy, analogous extraterrestrial materials, and source regions

Diverse forms of primordial organic matter identified in interplanetary dust particles

Fine-grained precursors dominate the micrometeorite flux

Raman spectroscopic investigation of two grains from comet 81P/Wild 2: Information that can be obtained beyond the presence of sp2-bonded carbon

Thermochemical stability of low-iron, manganese-enriched olivine in astrophysical environments

The size distributions of nanoscale Fe-Ni-S droplets in Stardust melted grains from comet 81P/Wild 2

Fine-grained material of 81P/Wild 2 in interaction with the Stardust aerogel

Aerogel tracks made by impacts of glycine: Implications for formation of bulbous tracks in aerogel and the Stardust mission

Properties of original impactors estimated from three-dimensional analysis of whole Stardust tracks
Sulfur four isotope NanoSIMS analysis of comet-81P/Wild 2 dust in impact craters on aluminum foil C2037N from NASA's Stardust mission

The origin of crystalline residues in Stardust Al foils: Surviving cometary dust or crystallized impact melts?

Experimental investigation of impacts by solar cell secondary ejecta on silica aerogel and aluminum foil: Implications for the Stardust Interstellar Dust Collector

Stardust interstellar dust calibration: Hydrocode modeling of impacts on Al-1100 foil at velocities up to 300 km s?1 and validation with experimental data

Microstructure modifications of silicates induced by the collection in aerogel: Experimental approach and comparison with Stardust results

Stardust impact analogs: Resolving pre- and postimpact mineralogy in Stardust Al foils

Automated searching of Stardust interstellar foils

Experimental impact features in Stardust aerogel: How track morphology reflects particle structure, composition, and density

Cratering and penetration experiments in aluminum and teflon: Implications for space-exposed surfaces

Meteoritics & Planetary Science is an international monthly journal published by John Wiley & Sons on behalf of the Meteoritical Society, which is a non-profit scholarly organization founded in 1933 to promote the study of extraterrestrial materials, including meteorites and space mission returned samples, and their history. The membership of the society boasts 950 scientists and amateur enthusiasts from over 33 countries who are interested in a wide range of planetary science. Members' interests include meteorites, cosmic dust, asteroids and comets, natural satellites, planets, impacts, and the origins of the Solar System. For more information, visit

pdf link, Meteoritics & Planetary Science Journal Special Issue (pdf version)

Written by Linda M. V. Martel, Hawai‘i Institute of Geophysics and Planetology, for PSRD.

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April 2012