Science students search for micrometeorites

Under the direction of science teachers Victoria Hernandez and Anya Swiss, two William Floyd High School students are conducting research into micrometeorites, trace particles usually found on the Earth’s surface after entering the atmosphere. The students, sophomores Kevin Detlefsen and Ronald Weisse, began their research by compiling information and analyzing published work on the composition of micrometeorites and pollutants present based on various levels of industrialization.

Science students search for micrometeoritesThese aspiring scientists, with the help of their teachers, recently set up a makeshift micrometeorite collector on the roof of the high school to see if they were able to collect micrometeorites in water. After collecting the samples, the students filtered it by placing neodymium magnets in parafilm and swirling it through collected water. The students are now evaluating the parafilm under a microscope to see if they can identify any spheroid particles.

“If these particles are present, we will bring them to Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL) to further investigate whether or not they may be micrometeorites,” said Mrs. Hernandez. “Lastly, students will bring all possible micrometeorites back to BNL to analyze their composition and identify if any pollutants are present.”

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