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Northwest Africa 3333
Basic information Name: Northwest Africa 3333
     This is an OFFICIAL meteorite name.
Abbreviation: NWA 3333
Observed fall: No
Year found: 2005
Country: Morocco
Mass:help 33 g
Meteoritical Bulletin:  MB 94  (2008)  Lunar basalt fragmental breccia
Recommended:  Lunar    [explanation]

This is 1 of 98 approved meteorites classified as Lunar.   [show all]
Search for other: Lunar meteorites
Comments: Approved 18 Aug 2008
Writeup from MB 94:

Northwest Africa 3333 (NWA 3333)      


Found: May 2005

Classification: Lunar basaltic fragmental breccia

History: Fabien Kuntz purchased a 33 g specimen from a Moroccan dealer. The original main mass was broken into at least 5 pieces and distributed to several dealers.

Physical characteristics: A partially weathered blackish-brown fusion crust was present on the specimen. Cut and polished surfaces on two different specimens reveal a coarsely brecciated texture, while a third specimen exhibits three different lithologies.

Petrography: (R. Zeigler, WUSL) The specimen examined consists of one basalt clast (1.5 cm) and one clast of cumulus olivine gabbro (1.2 cm) set in a fragmental breccia matrix. The basalt consists of phenocrysts composed of large zoned olivine and smaller chromite set in a fine-grained matrix of spinifex olivine, skeletal pyroxene, and glass. The gabbro (vol%) is 50% olivine, 35% pyroxene, and 15% plagioclase. A vein of black shock melt separates the cumulate clast from the fragmental breccia. The breccia is composed predominantly of pyroxene and olivine clasts, with minor plagioclase, and trace silica, Fe-Ti-Cr oxides, troilite, chromite, ilmenite, FeNi, apatite, and RE-merrillite.

Geochemistry: Mineral compositions and geochemistry: Matrix pyroxene and olivine is Fs17–65Wo12–29En8-61 and Fa40–95; plagioclase clasts are An86–95Or<2. Olivine in the basalt is zoned (Fo47–72). Mineral compositions in the olivine cumulate are Fo68, Fs63Wo15 and Fs52Wo32, and An92Or1. Fe/Mn = 85–110 (olivine) and 40–77 (pyroxene). Bulk composition: (R. Zeigler and R. Korotev, WUSL) The basalt (TiO2 = 0.8%, FeO = 21%, MgO = 14%, Th = 1.4 µg/g) is compositionally similar to that of NWA 3160; the cumulate olivine gabbro (TiO2 = 0.4%, FeO = 20%, MgO = 27%, Th = 1.2 µg/g) is similar to NWA 773 and 2977. All lithologies are characterized by low concentrations of Na2O (= 0.15 ± 0.06%) and Eu (= 0.4 ± 0.2 ppm) compared to other lunar basalts. The oxygen isotope composition (I. A. Franchi, R. C. Greenwood, OU) is consistent with lunar origin (δ17O = 2.94, δ18O = 5.59, Δ17O = 0.032).

Classification: Achondrite (lunar basaltic fragmental breccia). The specimen is part of the NWA 773/2700/2727/2977/3160 pairing group.

Specimens: A mass of 6.55 g is on deposit at DuPont and 0.4 g (neutron irradiated) and one thin section at WUSL.

Data from:
  Table 2
  Line 6:
Mass (g):33
Class:Lunar basalt fragmental breccia
Fayalite (mol%):40-96
Ferrosilite (mol%):17-65
Wollastonite (mol%):12.-29.
Classifier:R. Zeigler and R. Korotev, WUSL
Type spec mass (g):6.55
Type spec location:Dupont and WUSL
Main mass:DuPont
Plots: O isotopes:  
   and collections
OU: Planetary and Space Sciences Department of Physical Sciences The Open University Walton Hall Milton Keynes MK7 6AA United Kingdom, United Kingdom (institutional address; updated 8 Dec 2011)
WUSL: Washington Univ., One Brookings Drive, St. Louis, MO 63130, United States (institutional address; updated 17 Oct 2011)
DuPont: James M. DuPont Meteorite Collection, Deposited at FMNH in 2008., United States (private address; updated 1 Jun 2012)
Kuntz: Fabien Kuntz, France; Website (private address)
References: Published in Meteoritical Bulletin, no. 94, MAPS 43, 1551-1588 (2008)
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Photos from the Encyclopedia of Meteorites:
Don Edwards   
Labenne Meteorites   
Peter Marmet   
Randy Korotev   
Photos uploaded by members of the Encyclopedia of Meteorites.
    (Caution, these are of unknown reliability)
Fred CHAPRON Photo added 19 Apr 2022


     This is 1 of 1871 approved meteorites from Morocco (plus 24 unapproved names) (plus 1 impact crater)

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