Doorstop turns out to be $100K meteorite, ME museum among potential buyers

Doorstop turns out to be $100K meteorite, ME museum among potential buyers

Mona Sirbescu, a CMU geology professor, gets asked all the time by people to examine the rocks they bring her - but none ever turn out to be an official space rock.

The man then made a decision to take his rock to Mona Sirbescu, a geology faculty member in earth and atmospheric sciences at Central Michigan University. Weighing 22 pounds, it's the sixth-largest recorded find in MI - and potentially worth $100,000, according to CMU.

As it turns out, this is the 6th largest meteorite ever found and identified in MI.

Mazurek became the rock's owner in 1988, when he bought a farm in Edmore, Michigan.

The man even let his kids take the rock to school for show-and-tell throughout the years. "I wonder how much mine is worth'".

He asked the then homeowner about it and was told it was a meteorite found on the property in the 1930s. She said it will likely be called the "Edmore meteorite".

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Testing determined the meteorite is comprised of 88.5% iron and 11.5% nickle and, at 22 pounds, it's the sixth-largest meteorite recorded in the state.

While a space rock's size and what elements it's made from determine its value, all meteorites are worth something, and there's a large market for collectors.

"Just think, what I was holding is a piece of the early solar system that literally fell into our hands", Sirbescu said of the meteorite. A colleague there further analyzed the sample, including with an acid test to reveal the Widmanstätten pattern, a property of most iron-nickel meteorites that can not be faked.

Thousands of meteorites hit the earth each year, but most go unnoticed because they land in the ocean, or away from cities and towns.

Now the Smithsonian museum is considering buying the space rock, and it could fetch as much as $100,000, the release says. As CMU notes, the man has pledged to donate 10% of the sale price to the university as a token of gratitude for helping him identify it. This is apparently something that happens quite frequently to Sirbescu, who is part of the university's department of earth and atmospheric sciences.

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