$65k iron meteorite 'sculpture' to star at auction

Heritage Auctions are holding a Natural History sale in January at which a number of exciting meteorites will feature amongst the gems and fossils.

Chief amongst these is a very substantial octahedrite - a type of iron meteorite. Iron meteorites are rarer than stony meteorites. This octahedrite is from the Gibeon descent: a meteorite fall over what is now Namibia. It was found in 1992.

What is particularly unusual about the piece is it contains a large naturally formed hole, contributing to its sculpture-like appearance. Small meteorites might contain holes, but larger ones break up if substantial holes form.

Gibeon octahedrite meteorite
Gibeon octahedrite

The 24.3kg meteorite stands 323 x 211 x 98mm, has a slightly orange tinge to its naturally patinated, scalloped surface and has the prestigious claim of being from the Macovich collection, the world's leading collection of aesthetic meteorites, which we described in a recent newsletter.

A piece of Gibeon meteorite sold for $5,795 at a recent auction, but this example is far more impressive, and expected to fetch many times more: $50,000-65,000.

Heritage's live auction will take place in Dallas, Texas on Sunday January 17 2010, but bids can already be placed online.


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Images: Heritage Auctions

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