New York, July 12 (IANS) A small collection of meteorites and rock samples from several extraterrestrial bodies is currently open for online bidding at Christie's auction house.
The 'The Moon and Beyond: Meteorites from the Stifler Collection' online auction is offering these objects from a private collection, the majority of which is being donated to the US-based Maine Mineral and Gem Museum.
The sale highlights were one among the many Gibeon Meteorites that landed on Earth thousands of years ago when a wandering iron mass slammed exploded and rained down in the Kalahari Desert in Namibia, Christie's said.
The "C"-shaped gunmetal-hued meteorite is estimated to sell between $250,000-350,000 (Rs 1.7-2.4 crore).
The auction has some lunar meteorites on sale. "Most of the craters on the Moon are the result of asteroid impacts and some of these impacts are sufficiently powerful to eject Moon rocks off the lunar surface into space, some of which land on Earth."
A 'Massive Triangular Specimen of the Moon' (estimated between $100,000-130,000 or Rs 68-90 crore), as well as a 'Rare Lunar Sphere' (estimated between $35,000-55,000 or Rs 24-37 crore) are on sale as well. The former is a triangularly-shaped end piece that reveals both interior and exterior of Moon rock.
"Less than 600 kg of lunar meteorites, like this one, are known to exist. This lunar meteorite originated from a large meteorite shower straddling Mauritania and Algerian borders, which is the shower responsible for nearly half of the lunar meteorites that exist upon the Earth today," Christie's said.
Rare meteorites that originated from Mars are also being auctioned.
New Delhi, Nov 17 (IANS) In what is seen as a major boost for the union territory (UT) of Ladakh, Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Sunday launched winter grade diesel for the entire Ladakh region.
The Indian Oil Corp's (IOC) Panipat refinery has come up with a kind of diesel that can withstand the harsh winter conditions of the newly created UT where temperatures fall to sub zero of nearly -30 degree Celsius.
The winter grade diesel produced by Panipat Refinery for the first time has a pour point of - 33 degree C and does not lose its fluidity function even in the extreme winter weather of the region, unlike the normal grade of diesel which becomes exceedingly difficult to utilize. This winter grade diesel also meets BIS specification of the cleaner BS-VI grade diesel.
Amit Shah launched the supply of this special grade diesel in Ladakh via video conferencing from the national capital. Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan and BJP MP from Ladakh, Jamyang Tsering Namgyal, were present on the occasion.
Shah said that this special diesel for Ladakh has been developed to address the problem of loss of fuel during extreme winter conditions. The project is said to have cost more than Rs 50,000 crore.
The first tank truck containing winter grade HSD has been flagged off from IOC's Panipat marketing complex. Subsequent supplies of such diesel would be sent from the Jalandhar Terminal to the Leh and Kargil depots to meet demands of customers in the Leh-Ladakh region during peak winters.