Meteorite specialist showers over BC


Javier Valdes

Television host and professional meteorite hunter Geoff Notkin re-enacts the pose that he displays when encountering a new meteorite.

Elizabeth Castillo, Editor in Chief

Meteorite specialist, science writer and world traveler, Geoff Notkin presented a lecture as part of the STEM series at the Bakersfield College Levan Center on March 24.

“I’m officially a science nerd and don’t let anyone tell you that there’s anything wrong with it,” said Notkin.

The co-star of the Science Channel’s “Meteorite Men,” detailed why he became a meteorite specialist. He said that growing up, his parents took him on adventures all over the world. He went on an archaeological dig at the age of 6 and fell into an active volcano when he was 13. He enjoyed science growing up and realized that studying meteorites was a combination of astronomy and geology and helped him learn more about space.

“Meteorites are alien fragments of alien worlds,” he said.

Notkin explained the techniques he uses in the field to find meteorites. He said that visiting historic sites around the world can yield meteorite finds and that utilizing metal detectors can help in the search of meteorites. He said that he enjoys using a military grade bomb detector to scope out meteorites as well.

Notkin also discussed his company, Aerolite Meteorites, and recapped tales of some of his more eccentric clients. One of which, believed that meteorites came from stars, which is untrue. Notkin explained that the majority of meteorites come from asteroids and other debris in space. He also said that meteors do not land on Earth, and only meteorites can be found on the ground and leave impact craters.

“Meteor Crater in Arizona is erroneously named,” Notkin said.

His company not only sells to collectors but also provides museums with specimens as well. His company may trade specimens with a museum so that the meteorite can be studied.

“This is a great way for field workers and academia to work very well together,” he said.

During Notkin’s lecture, he allowed the audience to examine one of his meteorites and recalled his excitement handling a meteorite at a lecture he attended.

Notkin was involved with “Meteorite Men,” a Science Channel series that had three seasons aired. He hopes to be a part of another television series, “Meteorite Hunters Unlimited” with fellow meteorite expert Steve Arnold.

For more information on Notkin, visit