15610 (6) Coarse Olivine Basalt
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Click the microscope button to view a thin section for this sample.

Fact sheet

15610 (6) Coarse Olivine Basalt

15610 is a walnut-sized sample (>1 cm) extracted from the large 15600 soil sample. It was collected together with other fragments taken as rake samples from an adjacent area (15633, 15641, 15643 and 15663). They are grouped together because they are relatively coarse-grained samples of the abundant olivine­ normative Apollo 15 basalt clan. Most olivine grains are less than 1mm in length; the larger ones contain silicate melt inclusions. Pyroxene grains are up to 2mm in length and somewhat elongate. They are chemically zoned from pigeonite to Fe-rich augite (see rotation 1). Plagioclase grains up to 3mm, poikilitically enclose small pyroxene, otherwise intergrown with pyroxene. Chromite is found in pyroxene and is overgrown with ulvospinel when it is interstitial. Minor phases include cristobalite, fayalite, ilmenite, troilite, metallic iron and Fe-rich glass.

The sample weighed 1.5 grams before analysis and has not been dated.

Further details of this and other Apollo samples are here: http://curator.jsc.nasa.gov/lunar/

About this collection

The Apollo 15 landing site was in the Apennine Highlands, and close to Hadley Rille — a long, narrow winding valley. Approximately 76 kg of lunar material, including soil, rock, core-tube and deep-core samples, were returned to Earth.

This mission was the first flight of the Lunar Roving Vehicle which allowed the astronauts to venture further from the Lunar Module than in previous missions. During three periods of extravehicular activity, or EVA, on July 31st, and August 1st and 2nd, Scott and Irwin completed a record 18 hours, 37 minutes of exploration, travelling 17.5 miles, in the first car that humans had ever driven on the Moon.

Apollo 15 was launched on 26 July 1971.

Sample details

Collection: Apollo 15
Rock-forming mineral
Accessory minerals
metallic iron
Category guide  
Category Guide
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Refers to any word or phrase that appears anywhere in the descriptions of the specimens
Accessory minerals
Minerals that occur in very low abundance in a rock. They are usually not visible with the naked eye and contribute perhapssver, they often dominate the rare elements such as platinum group metals.
Rock-forming minerals
Minerals that make up the bulk of all rock samples and are also the ones used in rock classi?cation.
Selecting one or more period, for example 'Jurassic'.
A term used to group together related samples that are not already gathered into a single Collection. For instance, there is a ‘SW England granites’ theme that includes such rock types as granite, hydrothermal breccia, skarn and vein samples.
A general term used to label a rock sample. It is a useful way of grouping similar samples throughout a collection. Category names are often, but not exclusively, common rock names (e.g. granite, basalt, dolerite, gabbro, greisen, skarn, gneiss, amphibolite, limestone, sandstone).
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We would like to thank the following for the use of this sample: