The Getafe rock: Fall, composition and cosmic ray records of an unusual ultrarefractory scoriaceous material

J. Martínez-Frías, A. Weigel, K. Marti, T. Boyd, G. H. Wilson, T. Jull

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


In 1994 a moving car and its driver, on a highway in southern Madrid (Getafe), were struck by a falling rock. Eighty-one additional fragments (total weight : 55.926 kg) were later recovered, which all pointed towards a meteorite fall. A study of the composition of this object revealed an ultrarefractory material displaying a most unusual chemical make-up which differs from any known meteorite class, and for some elements and minerals approaches the composition of CAI (Ca-Al-rich inclusions in chondrites). A study of some cosmic-ray-produced stable and radioactive nuclides indicates: a) space and terrestrial exposure ages which do not exceed 1,000 and 520,000 years, respectively; b) the presence of a small 22Ne excess (1,100°C fraction), which suggests either a nucleogenic contribution from the 19F(α,n)22Ne reaction or a trapped Ne signature distinct from atmospheric Ne, and c) the existence of minor variations in the 38Ar/36Ar ratios also indicating a nucleogenic component or fractionation effects. 14C data are consistent with "modern" carbon originated in the period 1955-1958 and not earlier or more recently. The possibility that the Getafe rock could have a man-made origin (i.e. ceramic and refractory tiles, industrial slag) is also considered.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)308-314
Number of pages7
JournalRevista de Metalurgia (Madrid)
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1999
Externally publishedYes


  • Composition
  • Cosmic ray records
  • Fall
  • Getafe rock
  • Madrid
  • Meteorite
  • Slag
  • Spain

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Metals and Alloys
  • Materials Chemistry


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