Coordinated Chemical and Isotopic Imaging of Bells (CM2) Meteorite Matrix
S. J. Clemett, S. Messenger, K. Nakamura-Messenger and K. L. Thomas-Keprta
Meteoritic organic matter is a complex conglomeration of species formed in distinct environments and processes in circumstellar space, the interstellar medium, the Solar Nebula and asteroids. Consequently meteorites constitute a unique record of primordial organic chemical evolution. While bulk chemical analysis has provided a detailed description of the range and diversity of organic species present in carbonaceous chondrites, there is little information as to how these species are spatially distributed and their relationship to the host mineral matrix. The distribution of organic phases is nevertheless critical to understanding parent body processes. The CM and CI chondrites all display evidence of low temperature (< 350K) aqueous alteration that may have led to aqueous geochromatographic separation of organics and synthesis of new organics coupled to aqueous mineral alteration. Here we present the results of the first coordinated in situ isotopic and chemical mapping study of the Bells meteorite using a newly developed two-step laser mass spectrometer (mu-L(sup 2)MS) capable of measuring a broad range of organic compounds.