chondrule

chondrule

[kon-drool]
noun
a small round mass of olivine or pyroxene found in stony meteorites.

Origin:
1885–90; chondr- + -ule

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Collins
World English Dictionary
chondrule (ˈkɒndruːl)
 
n
one of the small spherical masses of mainly silicate minerals present in chondrites

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
chondrule   (kŏn'drl)  Pronunciation Key 
A small round granule of olivine or pyroxene occurring in many stony meteorites. Chondrules are thought to have formed from the condensation of hot gases in the solar system.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Encyclopedia Britannica
Encyclopedia

chondrule

small, rounded particle embedded in most stony meteorites called chondrites. Chondrules are usually about one millimetre in diameter and consist largely of the silicate minerals olivine and pyroxene. From textural and chemical relationships, it is clear that they were formed at high temperatures as dispersed molten droplets, which subsequently solidified and aggregated into chondritic masses. This process occurred in space in earliest times before the planets accreted. How the chondrules were melted, however, is not understood. It seems likely that dust particles or planetesimals already in existence were melted by high-energy events such as high-velocity collisions and splashed about as droplets that quickly cooled and crystallized

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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