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Tiglit

Enstatite achondrite, Aubrite
Witnessed Fall, South, Morocco
December 9, 2021

In early December, around 8:30pm local time, several residents in southern Morocco reported seeing a fireball, moving in a northwest to southeast direction, somewhere east of Guelmim and northeast of Laayoune. Adam Aaronson and M. Fouadassi, M. Aoudjehane, L. Zennouri, H. Chennaoui (members of the FSAC and ATTARIK foundations) headed into the field a few days later to recover the meteorite (28.4035278°N, 10.3734444°W) and to interview eyewitnesses. A Mr. Hmadi Elkebchi, for example, reported hearing a large explosion followed by three sonic booms. Other eyewitnesses reported seeing a blue fireball followed by a green light and also that the valley smelled of sulfur following the impact. Six large pieces and many smaller fragments were recovered.

In March of 2022, Tiglit was classified as an aubrite, a group of meteorites named after the stone that fell near France in 1836. Aubrites originated from an asteroid and are achondrites, meaning they do not contain chondrules and are thought to have come from a different parent body than the chondrites. Aubrites are relatively scarce; there are less than 70 officially classified. Research shows that aubrites may have some of the highest cosmic-ray exposure ages of any stony meteorites, up to 120 million years and a small near-Earth asteroid, 3103 Eger, is suspected of being the parent body of the aubrites. These types of meteorites have a distinctive pale fusion crust and light interiors, and are known contain large, white enstatite crystals.

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