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Iconic Artifact from Historic NASA Mission Now Auctioned

One of the key instruments used in NASA’s successful Apollo 16 mission, the moon scoop, is now on the auction block, anticipated to fetch nearly $750,000.

This crucial tool, instrumental in collecting moon rock samples during the 1972 mission, is available for enthusiasts to bid on through Boston-based RR Auction. The current highest bid stands at over $60,000.

The moon scoop was wielded by NASA lunar module pilot (LMP) Charles Duke and commander John Young during their 11-day lunar expedition, where they gathered over 200 pounds of rock samples. Duke used the scoop to support himself while collecting lunar samples, showcasing its unique design and functionality.

Duke’s account of the mission sheds light on how the scoop was employed to manage the weight of the lunar rocks, displaying its versatility and importance. Additionally, the scoop was instrumental in collecting a particularly rare sample known as “Shadow Rock.”

Described as one of the most significant items brought back from the lunar surface, this 13.75″ by 4.5″ by 2″ scoop, equipped with spring-loaded buttons for rotation, is expected to garner high interest among space enthusiasts and collectors alike. Its historic value is further enhanced by its time spent both on and within the lunar surface.

Accompanied by various photographs documenting its lunar journey, this one-of-a-kind auction item has been in Duke’s possession since its return to Earth in 1972. The auction is set to conclude on October 19, with bidding expected to surpass the $750,000 mark.

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