Isotopic anomalies are expected in primitive meteorites since astronomical observation and astrophysical modeling of stars predict a great variety of stellar processes. Protostellar clouds should partially preserve the memory of this diversity in solid grains. Since 1970, high precision mass spectrometry and high resolution ion probes have led to the discovery of numerous isotopic anomalies, which were rapidly associated with nucleosynthetic processes. A general rule is that small isotopic effects (parts in 103–104) are observed in centimeter size samples, whereas order of magnitude variations are observed at the micron scale in circumstellar grains.

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