The one-of-kind meteorite is going under the hammer at a Christie’s auction, the latest chapter in the object’s journey which began with it making its way to planet earth 4.5-billion years ago after crashing through Earth’s atmosphere at a speed of more than 30,000mph.
The rare meteorite is said to have landed in Russia on 12 February 1947, after it created havoc over the Sikhote-Alin Mountains in Siberia. Traveling at almost nine miles per second, the bright fireball left behind a thick smoke that could be eye-witnessed by many from almost 200 miles across.
One of those to have experienced its long smoke trail was Russian artist P.I. Medvedev who also captured it in a painting that was later reproduced as a postage stamp, issued in 1957 by the Soviet Union to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the event.
Out of the many fragments collected from the site in Russia was this heart-shaped specimen that, until now, has been carefully preserved.
Christened as ‘The Heart of Space’, the fine rock now forms part of the Christie’s Deep Impact: Martian, Lunar and other Rare Meteorites sale.
It is expected to fetch up to $500,000 at the auction, which takes place on 6 February.