May be up to 300,000 meteorites in Antarctica

(ORDO NEWS) — Nearly two-thirds of all meteorites found on Earth have been collected in Antarctica. Researchers from a Belgian-Dutch science team believe there could be up to 300,000 meteorites in the frozen fields of Antarctica.

Using artificial intelligence (AI), experts have developed the world’s first so-called “treasure map” that locates space rocks.

University of Brussels professor Vrieux and co-author of the study Steven Goderis said that meteorites have “tremendous scientific potential.”

“While more than 45,000 meteorites have been collected in Antarctica to date, the potential for future meteorite search missions is still largely untapped,” he said.

“According to our calculations, there are still more than 300,000 meteorites on the surface of the ice sheet, with enormous scientific potential.”

may be up to 300 000 meteorites in Antarctica 2

The researchers said the algorithm, which helped find meteorite-rich areas, is up to 80 percent accurate.

Free University of Brussels scientist and study lead author Veronica Tollenaar said it represents “a new era for Antarctic meteorite missions.”

Until now, meteorites have been searched with varying success only in certain areas of blue ice in Antarctica.

“We found several never-visited meteorite-rich areas relatively close to the research stations,” she explained.

“Through our analyzes, we learned that satellite observations of temperature, ice flow rate, surface area and geometry are good predictors of the location of meteorite-rich areas.”

The cold and dry conditions of the continent help preserve space rocks that are invaluable to understanding the universe.


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