What is a Lunar Meteorite?
Lunar meteorites are not, as some people mistakenly think, illegal moon rocks. Whilst it is indeed a Federal offence to possess any of the Apollo moon rocks returned between 1969 and 1972, lunar meteorites are meteorites which have been blasted from the surface of the Moon. In other words, they are rocks found on Earth that were ejected from the Moon by the impact of an asteroid or comet, which can be a recent event, or one that took place many millions of years ago. Some drift in space for all that time, eventually intersecting Earth orbit and falling on to the surface of our world.
How do we know they are from the Moon?
Simple one.. the isotope analysis conducted in the laboratories we work with shows that they are lunar in origin, matching up with the famed Apollo samples in terms of Oxygen isotope ratios and many other factors.
For a detailed overview of how this analysis is conducted and what is involved, copy this link in to your browser (External Link – University of Washington)