A recently described glass occurrence has been reported from the Atacama desert, Chile.
The glasses were named atacamaites and initially classified as tektites. However, suggested them to be impact glasses based on magnetic properties and redox state. A similar nature has been suggested based on Mössbauer spectra. Currently, the true nature of the atacamaites remain undefined, whether tektites or impact glasses, as well as the nature of the impactor.
More than 3000 pieces of atacamaite were collected over an area of 20 km2 in 2012 and 2013.
The results of analyses confirm the presence of a meteoritic component in the atacamaites, and thus their formation in an impact event. The compositional heterogeneity and water content suggest them to be impact glasses, rather than tektites, thus confirming previous suggestions by. As to the nature of the parent body, an iron composition appears more seemingly than a chondritic one, as suggested by overall geochemical results.