Lunar meteorite sells for $612,500 at RR Auction

The Buagaba meteorite, which is composed of six fragments that fit together, puzzle-like, to form a mass weighing slightly over 12 pounds, sold for $612,500. RR Auction image

BOSTON – A rare lunar meteorite sold for $612,500 at RR Auction on Thursday, Oct. 18.

The meteorite (above) was discovered in a remote area of Mauritania, in the deserts of Northwest Africa in 2017. The meteorite is classified as NWA 11789, lunar feldspathic breccia, unofficially known as “Buagaba” or “The Moon Puzzle.” It is composed of six fragments that fit together, puzzle-like, to form a mass weighing nearly 5.5 kg (12 pounds). With partial fusion crust visible on one side, it is a new classification and the largest known, complete lunar puzzle.

“The winning bid came from a representative working with the Tam Chuc Pagoda Complex, located in Ha Nam Province, Vietnam,” said Bobby Livingston, executive VP at RR Auction. “We are extremely happy and thrilled that this magnificent lunar meteorite will be proudly displayed at this beautiful facility — and this “Moon Puzzle” will certainly inspire students of science for generations to come.”

An Apollo 11 crew signed photograph of the Apollo 11 astronauts in front of the Lunar Module sold for $8,892.

Official color 8-x-10 NASA lithograph of the Apollo 11 astronauts in front of the Lunar Module, signed in green felt tip by Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins. Price Realized: $8,892. RR Auction image

Additional highlights from the sale include:

Dave Scott’s flown Apollo 15 Lunar Landmark Maps book carried to the moon during the Apollo 15 mission sold for $74,182.

Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin letter, written just three weeks before the launch of Apollo 11, where Armstrong contemplates what he will say upon stepping onto the moon, sold for $30,318.

Gordon Cooper’s Mercury-era journal sold for $28,658.

Saturn Launch Vehicle digital computer memory module sold for $26,271.

Northwest Africa (NWA) 8022 lunar meteorite slice, comprised of lunar feldspathic breccia (below) sold for $45,987.

Northwest Africa 8022 lunar meteorite slice. Price realized: $45,987. RR Auction image

The Space Exploration Auction from RR Auction began on Oct. 11 and concluded on Oct. 18. Details can be found online at www.rrauction.com.