Dar Al Gani 1058 moon rock heads to auction

The chances of you having ever heard of the Dar al Gani 1058 moon rock, which is a lunar meteorite, is slim. However, this moon rock is notable because it's the largest ever put up for auction. Auction house Heritage Auctions believes that the chunk of the moon could go for $380,000.

This particular lunar meteorite isn't a piece of moon rock returned by the Apollo astronauts, so NASA has no claim over the rock and can't stop the auction. Any moon rock returned by Apollo astronauts remains the property of NASA and the US government and can't be sold to the public. This rock weighs four pounds is the fourth largest piece of moon rock available to the public.

It's worth noting that rocks actually retrieved by probes or astronauts sent to the moon are worth more than lunar meteorites because of the inherent collector's value of such pieces. Dar al Gani 1058 was a piece of the lunar highland breccias from the moon's far side according to experts. There's no way to tell exactly when the rock was ejected from the moon.

The moon rock was discovered in Libya in 1998. It has been put up for auction by an anonymous collector and the opening bid for the rock is set at $170,000. The auction house expects the rock will go to a museum and calls the specimen "worthy the most important natural history museums in the world."

[via Huffington Post]