“It Looks Like a Meteorite to Me”

It is often not possible to determine whether a rock is a meteorite just from its appearance, particularly in a photograph. Achondrites such as meteorites from asteroids, Moon, and Mars can look very much like some types of common Earth rocks. 

Many people have told me that their rock “looks just like” some meteorite in a photo they saw. There’s no polite way to say this – most people don’t know what to look for.

The two rocks below look similar to each other. The one on the left is a meteorite, the one on the right is not – it’s a big chunk of terrestrial hematite. I think that most experienced meteorite hunters and collectors would recognize the one on the left as a meteorite because they know what to look for.