SMITHSONIAN

NATIONAL MUSEUM OF NATURAL HISTORY

 http://mineralsciences.si.edu/collections.htm

The Smithsonian Museum has a world renowned meteorite collection, particularly with regards Iron Meteorites. There are also some fantastic tektites, but apparently no bediasites! The following photographs are courtesy of Sheryl E. Sims.

ABOVE: A shattercone, a sliced layered tektite from Thailand, a layered tektite from Thailand and in the background some indochinites from Thailand.

ABOVE: A large layered tektite from Thailand.

ABOVE: A sliced layered tektite from Thailand.

ABOVE: High quality splashform tektites from Thailand.

ABOVE: A close-up of the splashform tektites from Thailand.

ABOVE: Some rare georgiaites from the Chesapeake impact. Unfortunately no bediasites are on display.

ABOVE: Pseudotachylite with granite fragments from the Vredefort impact structure in South Africa. OK, not a tektite, but it is glass!

Image credits: Sheryl E. Sims. Please do not reproduce without her permission. Thanks.

 

 

I'll leave you with the National Meteorite Collection description, from the Smithsonian webpage:

Meteorites provide invaluable clues to the origin and evolution of our Solar System, and meteorite scientists are almost completely dependent on a small number of major meteorite collections for research materials. The U.S. National Meteorite Collection, housed in the Deptartment of Mineral Sciences at the National Museum of Natural History, is one the largest and one of the best museum-based collections of meteorites in the world.

James Smithson, who donated the funds for the founding of the Smithsonian Institution, was a chemist and mineralogist by training and his original collection included meteorites. Regrettably, these samples were lost in an early fire. The modern meteorite collection began in 1870 and now numbers more than 17,000 specimens of more than 9,250 distinct meteorites. In addition, the National Collection houses almost 7,000 polished thin sections - thin wafers of rock mounted on glass and used for studying the mineralogy and texture of the rocks. These meteorites are available for study by qualified scientific investigators.

While the collection contains pieces of every type of meteorite, it is particularly strong in iron meteorites. We also have 7 of the 13 known Martian meteorites. Many of our best specimens are on exhibit in the Moon, Meteorites and Solar System Gallery of the Geology, Gems and Minerals Hall.