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How to loan a piece from the collection ?




Requests for research samples are welcome from all qualified scientists with permanent position in a recognized scientific institute. In general, requests are reviewed and considered by the Curators College (Marleen De Ceukelaire, Pr. Philippe Claeys, Dr. Vinciane Debaille) of Antarctic meteorites of the Royal Institute of Natural Sciences of Belgium (RBINS).

After a request is approved samples are available by the Curator of Antarctic Meteorites, RBINS.


Basic guidelines for allocation of meteorites for research

  • All samples are provided on a loan basis, and remain the property of RBINS.
  • The pristine mass of the meteorite other than small rare meteorites after allocation must be at least 2/3 of the original mass. Pristine mass is defined as that portion of a specimen which has never been allocated, after initial polished section (PS) preparation.
  • The pristine mass of small rare meteorites (less than 50 grams) after allocation must be at least 80% of the original mass. Rare meteorites are defined as meteorites other than type 4-6 ordinary chondrites, including rare type portions of large meteorites.
  • Allocations of any rare meteorite should generally be limited to samples less than 1 gram.
  • The term of the PTS loan will be for no more than 24 months. PS should be returned promptly upon completion of the proposed research period.
  • PS of any small meteorite (less than 5 grams) will not be, in general, loaned out but will be available for on-site use by scientists visiting RBINS.
  • Allocations will not be allowed until the meteorite has been announced and typed (classified) in NIPR catalog or on the Meteoritical Society website (//
  • Allocation from any meteorite that is under consortium study will generally not be permitted.
  • Investigators are strongly encouraged to limit requests to not more than 10 samples per request/review cycle. Higher numbers of samples may be approved, but in general, only 10 samples will be eligible for expeditious allocation processing. Investigators who request more than 10 samples should designate a subset for high-priority processing. A request for a chip for analysis plus a corresponding thin section for petrologic study of the same meteorite or clast will generally be counted as a single request, in relation to the 10 -sample limit.


Request out of the basic guidelines will be evaluated on a case by case study.

Subsamples and side studies

No subloan, even concerning leftover samples,  and no secondary study other than specified in the sample request are permitted unless written approval from the RBINS. Any leftover sample must be returned to the RBINS.



All publications and reports referring to the concerned samples must acknowledge the RBINS, which, moreover, must be informed about the publication.



Publications presenting the results obtained in the frame of the request are expected after 3 years, with a possibility to extend this period with 2 years. In case no publication can be expected from the loan for various reasons, the investigator must inform the RBINS and communicate the unpublished (even failed) results. These results will only be on internal record for administrative purposes, and not public.