Northwest Africa 5000 (NWA5000) lunar meteorite specimen known as the, “Impactor.” This partial slice has been diamond lap polished on five edges, leaving brown fusion crust on the sixth surface. Most think of fusion crust as being black but in the case of the majority of meteorites from the Moon, brown is the dominate color due to the lack of iron in their matrixes. Offered here is an example which features numerous lithologies (formations and mineral compositions) in different shades of greyscale surrounded by black shock-darkened mantles lending a 3D appearance to its flat surfaces. Multiple geological events on the Moon have been recorded in this rock making it a scientific treasure trove. This remarkable specimen exhibits multiple metal inclusions as well as what may be the world's largest lunar metal clast measuring 5 mm x 3 mm. Although seemingly small, this metal clast is part of the impactor (foreign body) which ejected this meteorite off of the Moon and is up to a googolplex times rarer than diamonds by weight.
NWA5000 is well studied with 18 peer-reviewed and published scientific papers with more in progress. The siderophile element (metal alloy) fractionation pattern does not fit any known iron meteorite group according to the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory & Dept. of Geological Sciences, Florida State University. This would place this unique alloy, only found in NWA5000, in the category of being one of the rarest, if not the rarest naturally occurring substance on Earth. Each of the three specimens offered here has a varying degree of these rare metal clasts.
The consensus among research scientists, museums and collectors alike is that the aesthetic and scientific qualities of NWA5000 are unsurpassed - 39th Lunar and Planetary Conference, Houston, 2008. “Arguably, the most desirable lunar meteorite in the world”, - Yale Peabody Museum. “NWA5000 is a real miracle” - Scientists do not usually use terms like this in formal scientific abstracts but then again NWA5000 is not usual by any means - Abstract no. 5231, N. Artemieva, Planetary Science, Institute for Dynamics of Geospheres, RAS, Russia.
This specimen was professionally prepared in an ultraclean environment using sterilized diamond-lined stainless steel blades and diamond embedded discs. A diamond lap polish was applied to all flat surfaces to the level where maximum contrast was achieved. Gloves and a mask were worn during preparation so this sample has never been directly in contact with human hands. You can be the first to touch its freshly prepared surfaces. This specimen is accompanied by a Certificate of Authenticity from The Hupé Collection/Adam C. Hupé, who is documented as the original NWA5000 main mass holder in the Meteoritical Bulletin No. 93.
This remarkable example weighs 14.20 grams, measures 36 mm x 23 mm x 8 mm and has a very high grade of 9. Most lunar meteorites do not grade at a level of 1 for comparison.
Notes: There is simply too much information, history and accolades to discuss this legendary Moon rock in a single page so it was spread out over three descriptions. Please be sure to read the other two descriptions for additional information that equally applies to this offering.
Terms and abbreviations used in our descriptions.