Planetary Simulant Database

Free Resource for Regolith Simulant Information


These are the components used for the NU-LHT-1M prototype.

Component Wt.%
Anorthosite 43.4
Norite 30.0
Glass 19.7
Hartzburgite 6.1
Ilmenite 0.73

Bulk Chemistry

This composition is for the NU-LHT-1M prototype

Oxide Wt.%
SiO2 47.6
Al2O3 24.4
FeO 4.3
MgO 8.5
CaO 13.1
Na2O 1.4

Physical Properties

These properties are for the NU-LHT-2M version, as reported by Zeng et al. 2010

Property Value
Specific gravity 2.749
Minimum density 1.367 g/cm3
Maximum density 2.057 g/cm3
Internal friction angle 36-40.7°


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Simulant Name: Lunar Highlands Type NU-LHT-1M/2M/3M/1D/2C
Availability: May Be Available
Fidelity: Enhanced
Developed By: Doug Stoeser and Stephen Wilson (USGS)
Available From: N/A
Publications: Stoeser, D. B. et al. (2010), Design and Specifications for the Highland Regolith Prototype Simulants NU-LHT-1M and -2M. NASA Technical Report 2010-216438.

Zeng, X. et al. (2010), Geotechnical Properties of NT-LHT-2M Lunar Highland Simulant. Journal of Aerospace Engineering, 23, 213-218.

The NU-LHT series was designed by the USGS in the late 2000s as general use lunar highlands simulants. They are based on the average chemical composition of Apollo 16 regolith samples. NU-LHT was made from a combination of Stillwater Norite, Anorthosite, and Hartzburgite, and Twin Sisters Dunite; partially and fully melted Stillwater mill waste was added as “pseudo-agglutinates” and “good glass”, respectively. The -2M version also included natural ilmenite, synthetic whitlockite, natural fluor-apatite, and natural pyrite.

The -1M version is composed of 80% crystalline material, 16% pseudo-agglutinate, and 4% good glass, while the -2M version is 65% crystalline material, 30% pseudo-agglutinate, and 5% good glass.

The -1D version is a finely-ground dust simulant, and -2C is a synthetic breccia. The -3M version removed the pseudo-agglutinates from NU-LHT-2M because it was designed for extensive mechanical testing under which the pseudo-agglutinates would likely break down.

The USGS is currently looking into re-starting its simulant efforts.


Photograph of NU-LHT-1 from Rickman et al. 2013