banner Header Image
Home Case study Meteor Showers Spacecraft Reentry News

The Impact and Recovery of the Novato Meteorite

[2012 October 18, 02:44 UT (Oct. 17, 19:44 PDT)]

Report your find to receive an N number by email to:

Recovered finds

The confirmed finds listed below are given in order of N number assigned. This will be regularly updated. If you find errors, please let us know.

Novato meteorites

N#	Mass(g) Lat(N)	Longitude(W)	Date of find	Finder

N01*	61.9	38.1090	122.6105	10/20/2012	Lisa Webber
N02	65.9	38.0941	122.5683	10/22/2012	Brien Cook
N03	79.8	38.1152	122.5640 	10/25/2012	Jason Utas
N04	107	38.1217	122.5670 	10/27/2012	Robert Verish
N05	24.3	38.1195	122.5720 	11/02/2012	Jason Utas
N06*	23.7	38.0768	122.5692	11/11/2012	Robert Kane

Novato Meteorite Consortium

Novato N01 was donated by Lisa Webber and Glenn Rivera to enable analysis by Novato Meteorite Consortium members. Please consider donating a small part of your future find to research so we can sample as many different parts of the asteroid as possible.

The following research teams (team lead given) are participating in a Novato meteorite consortium established to coordinate the analysis of the Novato meteorite samples and encourage as many samples to be studied as possible. Please contact if you like to join this effort with unique ability (POC) :

H. Busemann	Open Univ, U.K.	Heavy noble gasses	N01
J. Friedrich	Fordham Univ.	Elemental composition	N01
M. Fries	P.S.I.		Raman Spectroscopy	N01
D. Glavin	NASA Goddard	Amino acids     	N01 (methanol extract)
M. Grady	NHM          	C, N isot., Ar,Ne  	N01
P. Jenniskens	SETI/NASA ARC	Meteorite recovery	N01
M. Laubenstein	SanG, Italy	Gamma Ray Spectroscopy	N01
A. Rubin	UCLA      	Petrography       	N01
H. Sabbah	Toulouse	MS PAHS           	-.-
S. Sandford	NASA ARC  	IR spectroscopy		-.-
P. Schmitt-K.	H.-Z., Germany	MS organics     	N01
D. Sears	NASA ARC	Thermoluminescence     	N01
T. Swindle	LPL, Az      	Ar-Ar dating      	N01
K. Verosub	UC Davis 	magnetic signatures	N06,N05,N02,N01
J. Wasson	UCLA    	INAA            	-.-
K. Welten	UC Berkeley	Radio isotopes     	N01
Q. Yin    	UC Davis	isot./trace el. geoch.	N06, N01
K. Ziegler	UNM        	oxygen isot. (fluorin.)	N01
M. Zolensky	NASA JSC	Petrography		-.-
The following research teams are participating in the coordinated analysis of observations of the Novato's asteroid impact and recovery:
L. Blair	Novato            	Recovery
P. Brown	UWO, Canada       	Infrasound
D. Clark	UWO, Canada       	Pre-impact recovery
M. Fries	Planetary Science Inst.	Radar maps, strewn field
B. Girten	NASA/ARC          	Recovery
P. Jenniskens	SETI/NASA ARC     	Trajectory reconstruction
D. Kane     	Buck Inst.        	Density, recovery
R. Matson	SAIC              	Radar maps, strewn field
E. Silber	UWO, Canada       	Infrasound
J. Utas   	UC Berkeley       	Recovery
P. Worden	NASA/ARC          	Recovery

How to preserve your meteorite finds

To keep your meteorite in the best possible shape, here are some general guidelines:
  • Keep magnets away from them (in order not to destroy any natural magnetism in the rock)
  • Do not touch the meteorites (in case your hands contain moisture, oils, and bacteria).
  • Use aluminum foil to collect the meteorite and to store and handle it.
  • When you show the meteorites to others, minimize exposure to moisture (such as from people talking over it).
  • Keep plastics away from the meteorite. No storing in plastic bags, plastic containers, no touching with gloves.
  • Store the meteorites wrapped in aluminum foil in a clean (no smell) glas jar, covered by a sheet of aluminum foil. Put that jar in a bigger jar with closed lid with some desiccant on the bottom (if no other desiccant is available, one-minute rice will do). Allow the meteorite to dry out in this way to remove all adsorbed water vapor.
Please check also other sources of information to make sure you are doing your utmost best preserving the meteorite against weathering.


Report your find: This website, maintained by Dr. Jenniskens, keeps an official tally of the recovered meteorites. Each recovered meteorite is given a number. By knowing the location of the meteorite in the strewn field, it is possible to relate the properties of the meteorites back to a position in the original asteroid. By using the numbers in publications and trade, thus keeping track of the find location, over time we will get a glimpse of the fascinating little world that collided with Earth.

Unique aspects of Novato: The fireball crossed the cameras of the CAMS meteor shower surveillance project in the San Francisco Bay Area. CAMS provides an accurate trajectory and orbit in space. The calculated path over Novato was published in the SF Chronicle, which led Lisa Webber on the following Saturday to check her yard for the cause of impact sounds heard on the roof that evening. This first find made it clear what to look for. The recovered meteorites typically have lost much of their fusion crust and are not easily differentiated from some weathered terrestrial rocks.

Contact Us    Last Modified: 27 October 2012  
+ NASA Homepage
+ NASA en Español
+ Contact NASA
+ NASA Privacy Statement,
  Disclaimer, and
  Accessibility Certification
Ames Research Center
NASA Ames Research Center Planet Quest Other NASA Missions Johannes Kepler