NWA 482 – RARE PARTIAL SLICE OF THE MOON
Lot 2122
NWA 482 – RARE PARTIAL SLICE OF THE MOON
Sold for US$ 5,078 inc. premium
Auction Details
Natural History New York
11 Apr 2006 13:00 EDT

Auction 14423
Lot Details
NWA 482 – RARE PARTIAL SLICE OF THE MOON
ACHONANOM - Lunar Meteorite - Impact Melt Breccia
The Sahara Desert, near the Algerian/Moroccan border
Samples of the Moon are among the rarest naturally occurring substances on Earth, and this is a select and scientifically important specimen of the only anorthosite-rich, off-white lunar meteorite. NWA (North West Africa) 482 is both the freshest (least weathered) and the only lunar meteorite available to the public whose matrix is off-white—all others are various shades of deep charcoal. NWA 482 has been examined by noted scientists at UCLA, the University of Arizona, and the University of Chicago including, among others, Dr. Anthony Irving, a former NASA scientist who verified that NWA 482 matches moon rock sample #60015—which was brought to Earth by Apollo 16 in 1972. While Apollo missions recovered approximately 800 pounds of moon rock, not one gram is available to the public. The total weight of lunar meteorites is less than 30 pounds. Of the 23 known lunar meteorites, nearly half will also never be available to the public, as they are part of the national collections of a handful of countries following their recovery in Antarctica by scientific expeditions. Nomadic Berbers in the Sahara near the Algeria/Morocco border recovered NWA 482 in 1999. Researchers determined that it is a crystalline impact-melt breccia that is believed to have originated from the surface of the ancient lunar highlands. It was an impact event (an asteroid striking the Moon) that catapulted what became the NWA 482 mass off the lunar surface into space, a trip that ended millions of years later when the meteorite fell in the Sahara. With one edge of fusion crust; this is a fine representation of an exceedingly rare lunar sample.
Measures 18 x 16 x 3mm and weighs 2.03 grams.
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