Lunar Meteorite: Northwest Africa 5153

A slice of Northwest Africa 5153. Photo credit: Ted Bunch
A 2.5-g piece of NWA 5153. Image credit: Norbert Classen
Lab sample of NWA 5153. Image credit: Randy Korotev

from The Meteoritical Bulletin, No. 94

Northwest Africa 5153 (NWA 5153)

Find: 2007
Mass: 50.4 g (1 piece)

Achondrite (lunar, feldspathic breccia)

History and physical characteristics: A 50.4 g nearly complete stone was purchased in Erfoud, Morocco in January 2008. The aeolian-modified fusion crust is dark gray to reddish-brown.

Petrography (T. Bunch and J. Wittke, NAU; Dolores Hill, UA): Fragmental to melt-matrix breccia that contains an assortment of lunar highland lithologies and Mare basalts and glasses. Highland components analyzed by microprobe include cataclastic gabbro, troctolite, fragments of granophyric intergrowths of K-feldspar, felsic glasses and silica. Mare components include ophitic pigeonite and olivine basalts. Interior is very fresh and lacks alteration veins.

Mineral/phase compositions: Gabbro olivine is Fa31.7 (FeO/MnO = 99) and pigeonite is Fs25.7Wo9.3 (FeO/MnO = 53). Troctolite olivine is Fa22.3 (FeO/MnO = 80), Ca-pyroxene is Fs22.1Wo17, chromite Cr/(Cr+Al) = 0.63, and granophyric K-feldspar is An14.5Or54.3 with BaO = 2.6 wt %. Mare ophitic pigeonite basalt olivine is Fa36.7 (FeO/MnO = 106), pigeonite is Fs7.1Wo13.3 (FeO/MnO = 65) and ilmenite MgO = 5.2 wt %. Olivine basalt olivine is Fa36.2 (FeO/MnO = 94) and Ca-poor pyroxene is Fs32.1Wo13.3 (FeO/MnO =62).

Bulk chemistry: (R. Korotev, WUSL): Na2O = 0.476 wt %; Sc = 25.6 ppm; Cr = 1963 ppm; FeO = 12.72 wt %; Ni = 150 ppm; Co = 42.4 ppm and Sr = 132 ppm.

Classification: Achondrite (lunar feldspathic breccia).

Type specimen: 5 g and one thin section are on deposit at NAU and one thin section and 0.3 g are on deposit at UA. D. Pitt holds the main mass.

Randy Says…

Northwest Africa 5153 may be an iron-rich pair of the NWA 2995 clan. There are some subtle compositional differences, however, based on my analysis of the sample in the photo above.

More Information

Meteoritical Bulletin Database

NWA 5153


Korotev R. L. (2013) Siderophile elements in brecciated lunar meteorites44th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, abstract no. 1028.

Korotev R. L. and Irving A. J. (2021) Lunar meteorites from northern Africa. Meteoritics & Planetary Science, 206–240. 

Korotev R. L., Zeigler R. A., Irving A. J., and Bunch T. E. (2009) Keeping up with the Lunar Meteorites – 200940th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, abstract no. 1137.

Korotev R. L, Zeigler R. A., Jolliff B. L., Irving A. J., and Bunch T. E. (2009) Compositional and lithological diversity among brecciated lunar meteorites of intermediate iron compositionMeteoritics & Planetary Science 44, 1287-1322.