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Table of Contents Enchanted Learning
All About Astronomy
Site Index
Our Solar System Stars Glossary Printables, Worksheets, and Activities
The Sun The Planets The Moon Asteroids Kuiper Belt Comets Meteors Astronomers

ASTEROIDS
Introduction Near-Earth Asteroids
(NEA)
Asteroids and Dinosaurs List of Some Asteroids Composition Activities,
Web Links

Composition of Asteroids

COMPOSITION OF ASTEROIDS
Type Composition Percentage of Asteroids Albedo (reflectivity)
Carbon (C-type) Carbon over 75 percent 0.03-0.09 (Very dark)
Silicate (S-type) Metallic iron mixed with iron-silicates and magnesium-silicates 17 percent 0.10 -0.22 (Relatively bright)
Metallic (M-type) Iron/ nickel less than 7 percent 0.10-0.18 (Relatively bright)
Dark (D-type) Water ice/frozen carbon monoxide mixed with rock less than 1 percent 0.05 (Relatively dark and reddish)
The asteroids are varied in their composition. Most are made of rock, but some are composed of metals and other materials.

Most of what we know about the composition of asteroids is from studying the asteroids that have fallen to Earth; they are called meteorites at this point. Although some meteorites come from the moon and from comets, most are asteroids.





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