Testing accretion mechanisms of the H chondrite parent body utilizing nucleosynthetic anomalies

Søren Grube Pedersen, Martin Schiller, James N. Connelly, Martin Bizzarro

Meteoritics & Planetary Science
First Published: 7 March 2019


“Planetary bodies a few hundred kilometers in radii are the precursors to larger planets but it is unclear whether these bodies themselves formed very rapidly or accreted slowly over several millions of years. Ordinary H chondrite meteorites provide an opportunity to investigate the accretion time scale of a small planetary body given that variable degrees of thermal metamorphism present in H chondrites provide a proxy for their stratigraphic depth and, therefore, relative accretion times. We exploit this feature to search for nucleosynthetic isotope variability of 54Cr, which is a sensitive tracer of spatial and temporal variations in the protoplanetary disk’s solids, between 17 H chondrites covering all petrologic types to obtain clues about the parent body accretionary rate. We find no systematic variability in the mass‐biased corrected abundances of 53Cr or 54Cr outside of the analytical uncertainties, suggesting very rapid accretion of the H chondrite parent body consistent with turbulent accretion. By utilizing the μ54Cr–planetary mass relationship observed between inner solar system planetary bodies, we calculate that the H chondrite accretion occurred at 1.1 ± 0.4 or 1.8 ± 0.2 Myr after the formation of calcium‐aluminum‐rich inclusions (CAIs), assuming either the initial 26Al/27Al abundance of inner solar system solids determined from angrite meteorites or CAIs from CV chondrites, respectively. Notably, these ages are in agreement with age estimates based on the parent bodies’ thermal evolution when correcting these calculations to the same initial 26Al/27Al abundance, reinforcing the idea of a secular evolution in the isotopic composition of inner disk solids.”