The next stage of preservation is to ship the meteorites to the Meteorite Curation Facility at the NASA Johnson Space Center. "They are dried, chipped, sawed, weighed, and photographed in controlled atmosphere cabinets formerly used to process lunar samples,"
the Smithsonian wrote
. Scientists are invited to ask for samples if they are interested in looking at them, resulting in about 75 requests for an average 600 new samples found annually.
ANALYSIS: Large-ish Meteor Hits Earth... But No One Notices
Some of the more prominent meteorites recovered include the first asteroid from the moon, the first asteroid from Mars, and an infamous Martian meteorite
known as Allan Hills 84001 (ALH84001)
. Roughly 10 years ago, this meteorite hit the news (so to speak) when one scientific team said it may contain evidence of Martian life, but that hypothesis is still greatly debated today.
Image: The meteorite samples are delivered to the Johnson Space Center in Houston.