Nakhla main content.

Exhibition Text

A killer meteorite

At 9:00 A.M. on June 28, 1911, a series of loud bangs was heard over a village in Egypt. About 40 kilograms (88 pounds) of rock from the Nakhla meteorite rained from the sky, in about 40 separate pieces. At the time, the most unusual aspect of this meteorite was that one piece struck and killed a dog. It wasn't until seven decades later that anyone realized that Nakhla came from Mars.

When more meteorites similar to Nakhla were found, they were called nakhlites. Two related groups, the shergottites and chassignites, were similar enough that scientists concluded they came from the same parent body as the nakhlites. Together they became known as the SNCs (pronounced "snicks"), a name that now refers to all meteorites from Mars.

Collection Information


Fell June 28 1911

Abu Hommos, Alexandria, Egypt


AMNH 3887

For Educators