Scientists discover new lunar mineral

Scientists discover new lunar mineral

BEIJING: Chinese scientists have discovered a new lunar mineral through research on the samples retrieved from the Moon by China’s Chang’e-5 mission, the China National Space Administration (CNSA) and the China Atomic Energy Authority (CAEA) jointly announced.

This is the first new mineral discovered on the Moon by China and the sixth by humankind.

The new finding makes China the third country in the world to have discovered a new mineral on the Moon, said Dong Baotong, deputy director of the CAEA.

The new mineral, which has been named Changesite-(Y), is a kind of colorless transparent columnar crystal.

It was discovered from an analysis of lunar basalt particles by a research team from the Beijing Research Institute of Uranium Geology (BRIUG), a subsidiary of the China National Nuclear Corporation.

Changesite-(Y) has been officially approved as a new mineral by the Commission on New Minerals, Nomenclature and Classification of the International Mineralogical Association.

In 2020, China’s Chang’e-5 mission retrieved samples from the Moon weighing about 1.731kg, which were the first lunar samples retrieved in over 40 years.

Chinese scientists could make the new discovery due to technological progress. — Xinhua

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