Man Discovers Unusual Rock, Expert Weighs In On What It May Be

Man Discovers Unusual Rock, Expert Weighs In On What It May Be

One Abilene man found what he thinks could be a meteorite. So we looked into how great a possibility one has of actually finding one locally, and just what this man really found.
Once in awhile, we come across something unusual.
Sometimes they're rare and worth of a lot of money. Other times, they're just weird and worth nothing.
One Abilene man, for instance found what he thinks could be a meteorite. So, we looked into just how likely it is that when you stumble upon something like this, that it is actually something of value. Or just another rock to add to your collection.

"My metal detector kinda went bonkers on me. Every setting I had went off on a rock."

It's something Gerrad Branum never expected while searching for hidden treasures on the Old Lincoln Middle campus.

"I've searched with a metal detector and it never went haywire on me before," says Branum.

Branum thought he may have something more than just an old chunk of earth. His first thought? A meteorite.

"Well, it's not that unusual," says Dr. Patrick Miller, a mathematics professor at Hardin-Simmons.

According to Dr. Miller, the material from outer space falls uniformly all over the earth, and has been, for billions of years.

Miller adds, "So you're just as likely to find stuff here as you are anywhere else."

However, in the last 7 years, Dr. Miller has only identified one rock brought in as an actual meteorite. And today, he was unable to precisely identify Branum's rock, but has some pretty good insight.

"Well, i don't think it's a meteorite. It's slightly magnetic. I think it's volcanic in origin," says Miller.

Dr. Miller says the rock could have even been brought into the school by a landscaping business, but encouraged Branum not to give up hope.

"It would be a million and one kinda like winning the lottery, in my aspect."

Dr. Miller says the university usually sends their unidentified rocks to TCU to be accurately identified with the proper machinery.
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