CAVEZZO (prov.) – First meteorite fragments (~55.4 grams) found near Ponte Motta (Cavezzo) / Fall on 1 January 2020, 18:26:54 UT, Rovereto sul Secchia, Modena, Emilia-Romagna, Italy

Last update: 20 January 2020

Apparently the first ordinary chondrite (LL?) meteorite fragments were found by 48-year old warehouseman and cyclist Davide Gaddi from Mirandola in the grass next to a path on the bank of the Secchia near location 44.828856, 10.971635 near Ponte Motta (Cavezzo) at a few minutes past 2 p.m. on 4 January 2020 while walking his dog. His dog Pimpa found and sniffed the small meteorite (~3 g) in the grass. Gaddi went to the spot and picked up the specimen. Then he remembered the photos of meteorites he had seen in the local media. He put the fragment in a plastic bag and sent photos of the find to PRISMA (Prima Rete Italiana per la Sorveglianza sistematica di Meteore e dell’Atmosfera). Gaddi went on walking back to his car and found the larger fragment (~52 g) in the grass a few meters away. Meanwhile Daniele Gardiol of INAF (Istituto nazionale di astrofisica) had answered him via email and told him to meet Romano Serra near the Disvetro cemetary where Serra eventually confirmed the meteoritic nature of the find. Gaddi has decided to donate the small mass to the Municipality of Cavezzo (Cavezzo Astronomical Observatory). It is planned to make three casts of the meteorite, one for the town of Cavezzo, one for the observatory Disvetro di Cavezzo and one for Gaddi. The small 3-gram specimen has been given to Giovanni Protesi and is being analysed and classified at the Dipartimento Scienze della Terra of the University of Florence. The classification results are expected to be published from 20 January 2020. Measuring the short-lived radio isotopes of this meteorite is strongly advised to guarantee that the found specimen is actually a specimen which fell on 1 January 2020, especially because it seems to be an ordinary chondrite similar to those which have fallen in recent years. Measurements of the short-lived radio isotopes on the larger fragment, which is currently at the National Institute for Astrophysics (INAF) in Torino, are being performed at the Monte dei Cappuccini Laboratory (IFSI, INAF). It has apparently been decided that the name Cavezzo will be officially asked for when the classification results will be sent in. The search for more meteorites is continuing.

The large fragment. Photo: PRISMA/FRIPON

The larger fragment (~ max. 4 x 4 cm) next to the smaller one (~3 g). Photo: INAF

Photo: INAF

Photo: INAF

The seemingly chondritic lithology of the larger meteorite. Photo: Gazzetta di Modena

The second find (~52 g). Photo: Davide Gaddi

The first find (~3 g) . Photo: Davide Gaddi

The first find (~3 g) . Photo: Davide Gaddi

Interview with Romano Serra. Video: MEDIAINAF TV (4 January 2020)

Interview with finder Davide Gaddi near the find location. Video: Sul Panaro (5 January 2020)

A short video about the ongoing analyses of the meteorite fragments. Video: Università degli Studi di Firenze (20 January 2020)

Bolide (IT20200101T182654)

On 2 January PRISMA and INAF published the first trajectory analysis of the bolide (IT20200101T182654) which had been been captured by eight PRISMA cameras (Asiago, Padova, Bedonia, Rovigo, Felizzano, Loiano, Cecima and Navacchio). The luminous trail of about 5.5 seconds was recorded from a height of 76 km above the ground with a steep entry angle of about 68° relative to the horizontal. The entry velocity was calculated to be as low as 12 km/s. The bolide reached a brightness of a magnitude down to -10 during its main flare at a height of 32 km. The entry mass of the meteoroid was calculated to be about eight kilograms (10 kg according to INAF’S Daniele Gardiol) and the main fragmentation events were at heights of about 50 and 32 kilometers. The origin of the meteoroid has apparently been calculated to be from the inner asteroid belt. The final calculated total mass which could have reached the ground is reported to be about 150 grams, which we are sceptical about as it should be more than that.

Bolide recorded by the camera of the CuneoAAB station of the Associazione Astrofili of Bisalta. Video: STV

The bolide (in slow motion) recorded by the PRISMA camera LOIANO ITER01. Video: Prisma

Calculated luminous trail. Image: PRISMA

Calculated luminous trail . Image: PRISMA/FRIPON

The bolide’s calculated altitude versus time. Graph: FRIPON/Vigie

The bolide’s calculated velocity versus altitude. Graph: FRIPON/Vigie-Ciel/Simon Jeanne

The bolide’s luminosity (absolute magnitude) versus altitude. Graph: FRIPON/Vigie-Ciel/Simon Jeanne

The bolide’s calculated orbit. Graph: PRISMA

Radio detection of the bolide captured by the FRIPON radio station of Zicavo on Corsica. Graph: FRIPON / Vigie-Ciel


I due bolidi di Capodanno (1 January 2020)

Una meteorite in Emilia-Romagna!? (2 January 2020)

Forse è caduta una meteorite in Emilia-Romagna (2 January 2020)

Trovati frammenti della meteorite di Capodanno (4 January 2020)

Così io e la Pimpa abbiamo trovato il meteorite (5 January 2020)

L’ultimo fuoco di Capodanno
(Radio3 Scienza, 7 January 2020)
Interviews with Davide Gaddi, Daniele Gardiol and Mario Di Martino

Video: Sul Panaro (5 January 2020)

Video: TV Qui (5 January 2020)

Video: Gazzetta di Modena (6 January 2020)

Video: La Stampa (6 January 2020)

Video: RAI3, TG Leonardo (6 January 2020)

Italie : des fragments de météorite retrouvés. Video: France 2 (8 January 2020)