Carbonaceous chondrite, CM2. Witnessed fall, Alajuela, Costa Rica, April 23, 2019. Part slice weighing 1.4 grams and measuring 18 mm x 16 mm x 2 mm. This part slice shows a charcoal-grey matrix with an intriguing dusting of delicate, light-colored ancient chondrules—survivors from the very dawn of our solar system. The exterior edge shows some original, black fusion crust. Extremely rare, desirable, and scientifically extraordinary.
Great excitement tore through the meteorite community of researchers and collectors alike, when news arrived of a new Costa Rican fall on April 23, 2019. A significant fireball traveling from the northwest to the southeast, shortly after 9 pm was observed by many witnesses and recorded on camera. Not since 1969 had there been a comparable event. It was not the size of the fireball, or the number of fallen stones that generated almost unprecedented excitement, but rather the type of meteorite—an extremely rare carbonaceous chondrite known as a CM2. The fall would be named Aguas Zarcas (“clear and pure water” in Spanish).
Containing water and organic compounds and it has been widely theorized that this type of meteorite may have brought water, carbon, amino acids and other materials to Earth, during our planet's distant past. It is possible that meteorites similar to this CM2 were, therefore, responsible for carrying life-generating elements and compounds to Earth. Recently-recovered pieces are more valuable to scientists and they exhibit pristine features that are also desirable to the collector.
CM2s represent only 0.8% of all known meteorites. Of those, only 17 are recorded in the database as being witnessed falls and all are notoriously difficult for the collector to acquire. The Aguas Zarcas fall was a boon to both scientists—one admired meteorite PhD went on recording saying it was the “most important fall in 100 years”—and collectors, who dream of acquiring an example. Accompanied by a certificate of authenticity from Aerolite Meteorites.
Terms and abbreviations used in our descriptions.