Chelyabinsk Meteorite Fragment – Chelyabinsk Oblast, Russia
Approximate weight: 1.56g
Locality: Chelyabinsk Oblast, Russia
On February 15, 2013, a meteor entered Earth’s atmosphere and exploded over the Russian city of Chelyabinsk. The meteor which was estimated to be about 20 meters in diameter, released equivalent to approximately 440 kilotons of TNT (terajoules) upon entry, causing a powerful shockwave that shattered windows, damaged buildings, and injured over a thousand people.
The meteor’s explosion generated a brilliant fireball that streaked across the sky, captivating eyewitnesses and caught on numerous videos. The event highlighted the destructive potential of near-Earth objects and served as a wake-up call for increased efforts in detecting and tracking such objects to protect against future impacts.
Analysis of the Chelyabinsk meteorite revealed it to be a type of ordinary chondrite, a common type of stony meteorite composed mainly of silicate minerals. It provided valuable scientific data, shedding light on the formation and evolution of our solar system. The event also prompted renewed interest in studying and understanding the threat posed by larger asteroids and the potential measures that could be taken to mitigate the risks they may pose to our planet.
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