Lot 1
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Stony Iron. Pallasite (PAL)
Atacama Desert, Chile
Price Realised: USD 5250.00
Estimate : USD 1,200 - 1,800

Recovered from the Atacama Desert atop the Andes, the highest desert on Earth. The slice with one natural external edge and three cut edges. Loaded with olivine and peridot suspended in a gleaming iron-nickel matrix, this is a fine representation of the most bedazzling extraterrestrial substance known. Modern cutting.
60 x 60 x 4mm. (2⅓ x 2⅓ x ⅛in.)



The Natural History Museum, London

Please note this lot is the property of a private individual.

The condition of lots can vary widely and the nature of the lots sold means that they are unlikely to be in a perfect condition. Lots are sold in the condition they are in at the time of sale.

Overall in excellent condition. Please note that weights and dimensions are approximate only and that the appearance and surfaces of meteorites might change if not appropriately cared for. Proper handling and correct humidity control are easy to accommodate and will ensure condition is maintained, please contact the department if you would like further advice on how to live with meteorites in your collection.

Lot Essay

Pallasites are widely considered the most beautiful meteorites, and Imilac is among the most coveted. Pallasites are rare with which to begin; less than 0.2% of all meteorites are pallasites. Like all pallasitic meteorites, Imilac originated from the mantle-core boundary of an asteroid that broke apart during the early history of our solar system. The crystals seen here are the result of small chunks of the stony mantle becoming suspended in molten metal near the surface of the asteroid’s iron-nickel core. Cut and polished to a mirror finish, the lustrous metallic matrix features crystals of gleaming olivine and peridot (gem-quality olivine crystals) ranging in emerald to amber hues.

Christie's would like to thank Dr. Alan E. Rubin at the Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics, University of California, Los Angeles for his assistance in preparing this catalog note.

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