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Meteor Explosion Had As Much Power as a Nuclear Blast

Posted By yihan On February 15, 2013 @ 12:10 pm In Featured Stories,Sci Tech,Tile | Comments Disabled

Geoff Brumfiel
Nature.com [1]
February 15, 2013

A meteor that exploded over Russia this morning was the largest recorded object to strike the Earth in more than a century, scientists say. Infrasound data collected by a network designed to watch for nuclear weapons testing suggests that today’s blast released hundreds of kilotonnes of energy. That would make it far more powerful than the nuclear weapon tested by North Korea just days ago and the largest rock crashing on the planet since a meteor broke up over Siberia’s Tunguska river in 1908.

“It was a very, very powerful event,” says Margaret Campbell-Brown, an astronomer at the University of Western Ontario in London, Canada, who has studied data from two infrasound stations near the impact site. Her calculations show that the meteoroid was approximately 15 metres across when it entered the atmosphere, and put its mass at around 40 tonnes. “That would make it the biggest object recorded to hit the Earth since Tunguska,” she says.

The meteor appeared at around 09:25 a.m. local time over the region of Chelyabinsk, near the southern Ural Mountains. The fireball blinded drivers and a subsequent explosion blew out windows and damaged hundreds of buildings. So far, more than 700 people are reported to have been injured, mainly from broken glass, according to a statement from the Russian Emergency Ministry.

Full story here. [1]

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URLs in this post:

[1] Nature.com: http://www.nature.com/news/russian-meteor-largest-in-a-century-1.12438

[2] Meteor Was Largest to Hit Earth in a Century: http://www.prisonplanet.com/meteor-was-largest-to-hit-earth-in-a-century.html

[3] Russian meteor explosion not caused by asteroid flyby, NASA scientist says: http://www.prisonplanet.com/russian-meteor-explosion-not-caused-by-asteroid-flyby-nasa-scientist-says.html

[4] Russian Cleric Calls Meteor Strike ‘Message From God’: http://www.prisonplanet.com/russian-cleric-calls-meteor-strike-message-from-god.html

[5] Suspected meteor explosion reported in central Cuba: http://www.prisonplanet.com/suspected-meteor-explosion-reported-in-central-cuba.html

[6] TUNGUSKA: 104 Years Ago, A Mysterious Explosion 1000x More Powerful Than The Hiroshima Bomb Rocked Siberia: http://www.prisonplanet.com/tunguska-104-years-ago-a-mysterious-explosion-1000x-more-powerful-than-the-hiroshima-bomb-rocked-siberia.html

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