Can you find meteorites with magnet fishing? Yes, you can; many people have found meteorites in lakes. Particularly, scientists have recovered meteorite fragments from the bottom of the lake and used them for research purposes.
Meteorites are rocks and a piece of other bodies in our solar system.
They are a piece of comet and asteroid that originated in outer space and make it to our ground when they flash through our atmosphere. They can be huge and very small also.
We know them as ‘shooting stars’.
But the real question is how to find meteorites since most magnet fishers aren’t focused on it. They aim to find valuable items like weapons and safes, but not meteorites. They don’t even know what meteorites are and how they can change their magnet fishing game.
How To Find Meteorites
Luckily, most meteorites contain some iron-nickel metal.
Therefore, it is easy to attract them through a magnet. However, it is tough to identify them as the properties they have are owned by some other terrestrial rocks and man-made metals.
For instance, lumps of man-made iron can be confused with meteorites. They often have a smooth and rounded shape and also have similarities to meteorites. But the main difference between man-made iron lumps and meteorites is the presence of nickel. Most meteorites contain some nickel, whereas man-made iron objects generally don’t have the presence of nickel.
Other than that, the density of meteorites also matters a lot.
Meteorites are 3.5 times as heavy as earth rocks; they are made of dense and heavy metals.
Due to these reasons, it is pertinent to find meteorites in the right places. And, the best places to find meteorites are ‘Lakes’; they are the ideal locations for magnet fishers.
1 – Pingualuit Crater
The Pingualuit Crater is known as the purest freshwater lake on planet Earth.
It is located on the Ungava Peninsula and estimated to be 1.4 million years old. This place is largely unknown to the outside world, but for magnet fishers, it can be a goldmine.
It is formed by a meteorite impact, for that reason, you can expect to discovered meteorites in it and your magnet will be able to find them easily as well, as when we check the composition of the meteorite pieces in this lake, they have Ir, Ni, and Co; they are chondritic.
Though, keep in mind, this place is covered with ice nine-months out of the year.
You need to choose the right time for testing your magnet fishing skills.
2 – Lake Dellen
This lake system is present in Sweden.
It has a surface area of 52 km square in the South and 82 km square in the North. In a way, it consists of two lakes. It was also formed by an impact crater 89 million years ago. The asteroid 7704 Dellen was named after it too.
The interesting thing about this lake system is it has the kind of rock that is formed by an asteroid strike. It is known as ‘Tagamite’ or ‘Dellenite’.
You can expect to find many interesting pieces of the asteroid. Particularly, meteorites and rocks with Dellenite composition are mostly at the border of this lake.
3 – Tswaing Crater
The Tswaing Crater is in South Africa and accompanied by a museum.
It is located about 40 km northwest of Pretoria. According to experts, it was created 220,000 years ago when a meteorite half a football field size slammed into the Earth. Water in this crater comes from the rain and groundwater which is rich in dissolved carbonates.
As a magnet fisher, it is imperative for you to obtain the permit since it is secured for tourists. This place is opened daily from 07:30 AM – 04:00 PM.
You can follow one of the three trails that lead to Tswaing Crater.
Magnet Fishing For Meteorites – FAQs
Here are some frequently asked questions about magnet fishing for meteorites. They will clear your perception more and show how meteorites are an interesting aspect of this hobby.
How to confirm if you found a meteorite?
The thing that separates meteorites from the rocks is the metal found in meteorites; it is shiny and looks like chrome. It can have fusion crust or aerodynamic shape. Plus, it is a tad heavier too. All these indicators show that you have a meteorite in your hands.
Which magnet is used for finding meteorites?
A high-quality neodymium magnet is good for finding meteorites; many meteorite spotters count on it. Though it can attract some rocks too since magnetite is found in some rocks.
Can you sell meteorites?
Yes, you can sell meteorites, however, they can’t be exported without a permit. You can sell them to the local institutions and museums, as they are valuable for them.
How much is a meteorite worth per pound or gram?
Meteorites are valuable items; they are rarer than gold, platinum, and diamond. Therefore, they worth as much as $1,000 per gram or $1 million for one pound. It is possible to sell them online too.
Are meteorites radioactive?
No, they are not radioactive or dangerous. A smoke detector in your home is more radioactive in fact. But freshly fallen meteorites do release some activity but it is very short-lived. For that reason, scientists are particularly interested in freshly fallen meteorites. Besides, you can certainly touch the meteorites without any issue.
With a magnet, you can attract iron meteorites and stony-iron meteorites.
It is tough to find stony meteorites as they don’t have metals; they mostly have silicate material. People often try to find valuable items through magnet fishing, but if they focus on meteorites, they can earn a lot and visit many interesting places as well.
In case it is tough to find a lake near your home, visit the beach. It is also an ideal place to collect the meteorite dust. Although it won’t be so beneficial, it will give some idea regarding the difference between sand dust and meteorite dust.