Chinese scientists have discovered new lunar minerals through the study of samples recovered from the moon jointly announced yesterday by China’s Chang’e 5 mission, the China National Space Administration (CNSA) and the China Atomic Energy Agency (CAEA). Did.
It is the first new mineral discovered on the Moon by China and the sixth by humans. The new discovery makes China her third country in the world to discover new minerals on the moon, said Dong Baotong, deputy director of the CAEA.
This new mineral named Changesite-(Y) is a kind of colorless transparent columnar crystals. This was discovered by a research team at the Beijing Institute of Uranium Geology (BRIUG), a subsidiary of China National Nuclear Group, after analyzing lunar basalt grains. The story is published on the Xinhua website.
Changesite-(Y) was officially approved as a new mineral by the Committee on New Minerals, Nomenclature and Classification of the International Mineralogical Society.
BRIUG’s research team leader, Li Ziying, said the discovery is of great scientific significance for the study of lunar minerals, lunar evolution, and deep space exploration.
As one of the many research institutes participating in lunar sample research, BRIUG is focused on the study of fission and fusion elements in lunar samples, and is an important part of lunar evolution studies and lunar resource assessment. It provides basic data for
When the research team first took a 50-milligram lunar sample in July 2021 for mineralogical studies, they found traces of new minerals. However, the lunar soil particles were so small that ideal data for mineral determination was not available.
The team then submitted a second batch of lunar samples of about 15 milligrams. The research team finally singled out pure single-crystal particles from over 140,000 small particles. This particle has a size of 10 x 7 x 4 microns, less than a tenth of the average diameter of a human hair. The team decoded its crystal structure and confirmed it was a new mineral.