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    Sale 12052

    Science & Natural History

    19 October 2016, London, South Kensington

  • Lot 29

    A SMALL ORIENTED CHELYABINSK METEORITE

    LL5
    CHELYABINSKAYA OBLAST, RUSSIA (54°49’ N, 61°07’ E)

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    A SMALL ORIENTED CHELYABINSK METEORITE
    LL5
    Chelyabinskaya Oblast, Russia (54°49’ N, 61°07’ E)
    While this is a modestly sized oriented meteorite compared to the previous lot, every feature of orientation is evident: parabolic cone, flow lines, regmaglypts, an ablation lip and evidence of bubbling on the reverse. On the obverse an evocation of a face similar to the character Kuato in the film Total Recall.
    39 x 37 x 17mm (1½ x 1½ x 1/8in.)
    45.1g


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    This is a smaller oriented meteorite from the Chelyabink meteorite shower—and as is the case with the previous lot, less than 1% of all meteorites exhibit this degree of orientation. As a result of the damage created by Chelyabinsk, scientists are racing to come up with a comprehensive global strategy to protect Earth from a larger bombardment. About 13,000 Near-Earth Objects (NEOs) like the Chelyabinsk parent body have been discovered to date; nearly 900 of them are a kilometer in diameter or larger. More than 1600 of these bodies have been officially classified as “Potentially Hazardous Asteroids.” Chelyabinsk is a member of the least-common ordinary-chondrite group—the LL chondrites. It wandered through interplanetary space for a scant 1 million years, which suggests that Chelyabinsk was derived from the recent disruption of a small Earth-crossing asteroid that was itself broken off the main LL parent asteroid in the more-distant past. During one or more of these collisional events, Chelyabinsk was significantly shocked; pools of impact melt have been documented in numerous specimens.

    Special Notice

    These lots have been imported from outside the EU for sale using a Temporary Import regime. Import VAT is payable (at 5%) on the Hammer price. VAT is also payable (at 20%) on the buyer’s Premium on a VAT inclusive basis. This VAT is not shown separately on the invoice. When a buyer of such a lot has registered an EU address but wishes to export the lot or complete the import into another EU country, he must advise Christie's immediately after the auction.


    Literature

    Klotz, I. (2014), “Russian Meteor: Chelyabinsk Asteroid Had Violent Past.” Discovery. Accessed November 5, 2015.

    Dorminey, B. (2015), “NASA Surprised By Chelyabinsk Russian Meteor Fragments.” Forbes. Accessed November 5, 2015