• Campo Del Cielo Meteorite


    The Campo del Cielo refers to a group of iron meteorites or to the area where they were found. This area is situated on the border between the provinces of Chaco and Santiago del Estero. The crater field covers an area of 3 by 18.5 kilometres (1.9 by 11.5 mi) and contains at least 26 craters.

    The craters' age is estimated as 4,000–5,000 years. The craters, containing iron masses, were reported in 1576, but were already well known to the aboriginal inhabitants of the area. The craters and the area around contain numerous fragments of an iron meteorite. The total weight of the pieces so far recovered is about 100 tonnes, making the meteorite possibly the heaviest one ever recovered on Earth.

    In 1576, the governor of a province in Northern Argentina commissioned the military to search for a huge mass of iron, which he had heard that Natives used for their weapons. The Natives claimed that the mass had fallen from the sky in a place they called Piguem Nonralta which the Spanish translated as Campo del Cielo ("Field of Heaven"). The expedition found a large mass of metal protruding out of the soil. They assumed it was an iron mine and brought back a few samples, which were described as being of unusual purity. The governor documented the expedition and deposited the report in the Archivo General de Indias in Seville.