South American meteorite could hit $36,000
Dug-up in 1979, this rare fragment of the unique D'Orbigny meteorite is auctioning in California
We couldn't resist another look at the weird and wonderful lots featured in IM Chait's forthcoming Spring Natural History Auction on May 16.
Highlights in the sale include a $0.5m near-complete skeleton of a 20-foot-long dinosaur and a notorious spoof 'Towing Bill' from the Apollo 13 mission (click here to read the bizarre true story).
And auctioning alongside them are a variety of highly coveted space rocks, of which one of the most valuable is also one of the least assuming to the untrained eye.
The example pictured below is an excellent end piece from the rare Angrite meteorite known as D'Orbigny.
The D'Orbigny meteorite was uncovered by a farmer in 1979 while he was ploughing a rock-less field south of the Buenos Aires Province in Argentina.
The rock was initially mistaken for an Indian artefact until the year 2000, when a sample was eventually identified as being a very rare Angrite.
An unusual type of achondrite rock (which don't have the visible round grains found in many meteorites), Angrites are unique in showing no signs of brecciation, or impact and heat related deformation.
This South American Angrite is particularly superb. A sliced surface reveals its fascinating grey and black finely-textured patterning, with a good expanse of bubbly end piece fusion crust.
The fragment measures 2 x 13 ¾ x 1/8 inches, and weights 71.8g.
Presented in a Riker mount, it will auction with an estimate of $34,000-36,000, and few collectibles offer a better investment than a billions-of-years old piece of space rock...
IM Chait is based in California, US.
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Images: IM Chait