The catalog of the meteorite collection of the Italian Museum of Planetary Sciences in Prato (Italy)OPEN ACCESS 

Marco Morelli, Annarita Franza, Daniela Faggi, Giovanni Pratesi

Version of Record online: 31 March 2023


“For the first time, this paper presents to the planetary scientists’ community the catalog of the meteorite collection preserved at the Italian Museum of Planetary Sciences (Museo Italiano di Scienze Planetarie, henceforth MISP) in Prato (Italy). Founded in 2005, MISP is a type specimen official repository approved by the Nomenclature Committee of the Meteoritical Society. It represents one of the few museums worldwide entirely devoted to planetary sciences. The catalog of its meteorite collection encompasses 430 meteorites for a total of 1536 specimens, including 291 thin sections, 184 thick sections, and 278 specimens that MISP has classified. Furthermore, MISP is currently classifying 57 other meteorites. Some samples were found during meteorite recovery expeditions in hot deserts, promoted by MISP in collaboration with diverse Italian universities and national research institutions. MISP also keeps an impact rocks collection comprising 257 samples. In a country like Italy, where most of the collected meteorites are housed in museums whose catalogs are not available online, the publication of the MISP meteorite collection catalog, together with the catalog of the impact rocks collection, represents not only a significant scientific primary source but also a remarkable tool for disseminating meteoritics to nonresearch audiences in educational activities and citizen science projects.”