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Space & Astronomy

Huge fireball exploded in Earth's atmosphere

By T.K. Randall
March 18, 2019 · Comment icon 5 comments



Fortunately the explosion occurred over a remote area. Image Credit: RafaelMousob / Pixabay
The blast, which occurred in December over the Bering Sea, went largely unnoticed due to its remote location.
The meteor entered the atmosphere at around noon on December 18th and exploded approximately 25.6km above the surface of the Earth with an explosive force of 173 kilotons - the equivalent of around ten Hiroshima atomic bombs.

The event has drawn comparisons to the 2013 Chelyabinsk meteor explosion which caused widespread damage over several square miles and injured at least 1,500 people.

According to NASA planetary defense officer Lindley Johnson, events like this are only expected to occur around 2 or 3 times every 100 years.
"That was 40% the energy release of Chelyabinsk, but it was over the Bering Sea so it didn't have the same type of effect or show up in the news," said Johnson.

If the explosion had occurred over a densely populated area, things would have been very different.

Some photographs showing the meteor itself can be viewed below.



Source: BBC News | Comments (5)


Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by Black Red Devil 4 years ago
GULP
Comment icon #2 Posted by Seti42 4 years ago
This probably happens a lot more than we realize. The earth is ~70% water-covered, most of humanity lives in small areas called cities, and we aren't watching everywhere.
Comment icon #3 Posted by and then 4 years ago
I guess the reason we notice more that occur over the Russian landmass is that the Russian territory is so vast.  If a Chelyabinsk strength object detonated over Manhattan, it could kill people and cause millions in damage. Not to mention adding hundreds of thousands in extra sales of laundry detergent  
Comment icon #4 Posted by bison 4 years ago
 A worldwide chart of sizable meteorite impacts is included in the complete BBC News article.  Judging by this, the Center for Near Earth Object Studies, a part of NASA, has a pretty good network of sensors for detecting these strikes, wherever in the world they may happen, even over the oceans, and remote land areas.  
Comment icon #5 Posted by Raptor Witness 4 years ago
Here's a .gif of the thing, if it will post properly.   Nice find ...


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