Find / Fall: Find – 1861
Location: Southern Antofagasta, Chile
Total Known Weight: 3.83 t
Vaca Muerta is a mesosiderite meteorite. Mesosiderites are stony-iron space rocks that are a half and half mixture of nickel-iron and rock. Vaca Muerta is Spanish for “dead cow.” The meteorite was named for a nearby dry riverbed in the Atacama Desert of Chile. It was first discovered in 1861, but the location was lost for nearly 100 years. Much Vaca Muerta meteorite has been recovered over the decades, but little new can now be found at the site. Vaca Muerta is one of the most stable and trouble free of the mesosiderites. These specimens have been cleaned but left in a near natural state. Most have a highly polished flat face which reveals the metal and stone mixture.