‘Forrest’ (18 November 2019) and Madura Cave (L5, 19 June 2020) – Meteorites of two falls found on the Nullarbor Plain, Western Australia

Last update: 17 January 2021

Curtin University press release (30 July 2020)

The Desert Fireball Network (30 July 2020)

Forrest’ (prov.), Fall on 18 November 2019

The ~ 300-gram Forrest (prov.) meteorite (most likely an ordinary chondrite) which fell northwest of Forrest Airport on 18 November 2019 was found in the second half of July 2020 after about four hours of searching during a 2-week trip to the predicted ~5-km fall area. The meteorite was found within 100 metres from the calculated ‘fall line’. Photo: Raiza Quintero

The ~ 300-gram ‘Forrest‘ (prov.) meteorite (most likely an ordinary chondrite) with a network of contraction cracks in its fusion crust in situ. Photo: Raiza Quintero

The ‘Forrest’ (prov.) meteorite in situ. Photo: DFN/Curtin University

Dr Martin Towner (head of DFN field operations) and PhD and masters students Seamus Anderson, Francesca Cary, Morgan Cox, Ken Orr and Raiza Quintero at the ‘Forrest’ (prov.) fall site in July 2020. Photo: DFN

This photo shows the ‘Forrest’ bolide (DN191118_02) on 18 November 2019 recorded by a DFN camera. Its preatmospheric orbit apparently had an apoapsis which almost reached the Jupiter orbit. Photo: DFN

Madura Cave, fall (L5, 1.072 kg, 22:05 UT on 19 June 2020)

On 16 January 2021 the meteorite was officially registered as confirmed fall in the Meteoritical Bulletin Database: Madura Cave (L5, W0).

Photo: Hadrien Devillepoix/DFN

The 1.072-kilogram ‘Madura (Cave)’ meteorite of a fall on 19 June 2020 was found only twenty days after its fall at a location south of the Eyre Highway on an old telegraph track near Madura Cave. It was found rather by accident by astronomer Dr Hadrien Devillepoix and planetary geologist Dr Anthony Lagain after only two hours while walking back to their car during a one-vehicle ‘scout trip’ to assess the latest only roughly calculated ~2-km fall area near Madura. The meteorite was found less than 15 metres from the predicted ‘fall line’. Photo: Hadrien Devillepoix/DFN

Curtin University’s Dr Hadrien Devillepoix pointing to the 1.072-kilogram ‘Madura Cave’ meteorite found on an old telegraph track near Madura Cave in southeast Western Australia on or around 9 July 2020. Photo: Curtin University

Hadrien Devillepoix bagging the ‘Madura (Cave)’ meteorite next to its impact pit on/around 9 July 2020. Photo: Anthony Lagain

The Madura Cave fall location on the dirt track south-southwest of Madura.

The ‘Madura Cave’ meteorite in front of a model of a DFN camera. Photo: 9News Perth

The regmaglypted ‘Madura Cave’ meteorite. Photo: Cyndi Lavrencic

The ‘Madura Cave’ bolide (DN200619_01) captured by a camera of the Desert Fireball Network on 19 June 2020. Its much less elliptic preatmospheric near-Earth orbit had an apoapsis between the orbits of Earth and Mars and a periapsis between the orbits of Earth and Venus, an Aten asteroid orbit. Photo: DFN

Close-up of the ‘Madura Cave’ bolide’s luminous trail with apparently at least two flares on 19 June 2020.

The fall areas near Madura Cave and Forrest Airport, about 200 km apart.


Meteorites bring information about the early solar system (MP3)
The Science Show, ABC (19 September 2020)
with Dr Eleanor Sansom, Researcher in Planetary Science, Space Science and Technology Centre, Curtin University

Two Meteorites in Two Weeks! (DFN, 30 July 2020)

Dr Hadrien Devillepoix, Dr Eleanor (Ellie) Sansom, Dr Anthony Lagain discuss the finds. Video: Curtin University

ABC News (30 July 2020)

News report ( 9 News Perth, 30 July 2020)

News report ( 9 News Perth, 30 July 2020)