Meteorite | Erg Chech 002 | Achondrite | 28,11gCode: 014
Product detailed description
In May 2020, an expedition team made a groundbreaking discovery in the Erg Chech region of the western Sahara. After extensive exploration, the team discovered an unusual object within the infinite expanse of the desert. This incredible find was destined to make history. The dedicated researchers stood before an object that bore no resemblance to any previously known meteorites. Additional investigation revealed it to be a rock fragment approximately 4.566 billion years old, significantly older than Earth, which came into existence about 23 million years later.
Now known as the Erg Chech 002 meteorite, this object is the remnant of a protoplanet's volcanic activity in the early solar system, essentially a piece of ancient lava. Remarkably, it is the oldest object from the solar system ever discovered by humanity. According to studies, its progenitor planet formed just two million years post the solar system's birth, with the meteorite breaking away approximately a million years later. This parent planet was likely absorbed by one of the solar system's larger bodies that exist today.
The specific fragment we present weighs over 28g. Its composition is also peculiar compared to other similar objects. The Erg Chech 002 is predominantly comprised of quartz-filled crystals, an exceptional characteristic for meteorites, which typically contain only minuscule amounts of quartz. Prominent green and translucent sections formed by pyroxene crystals also distinguish it. The meteorite is classified as andesite, an unusual category. Among the over 3,000 known meteorites derived from various planetary mantles and asteroids, the majority are rock basalts, with only a few instances of andesite meteorites. This suggests that the meteorite likely originated inside a planet abundant in water. Further, the oxygen isotopes don't match any other achondrite meteorites from the Moon, Mars, or asteroids like Vesta.
To this point, approximately 30 kilograms of the Erg Chech 002 meteorite have been discovered in various sizes, and no further findings are expected. Thus, the total quantity is likely to remain fixed, and it's almost certain that the value of this meteorite will progressively appreciate.
Discovery Location: Erg Chech, Algeria
Interesting Fact: Originated from extraterrestrial lava that predates Earth