Skip to comments.Scientists Probe Asteroid Crash
Posted on 08/26/2005 7:00:38 AM PDT by Our_Man_In_Gough_Island
AN asteroid the size of a house that exploded with the power of an atom bomb over Antarctica last year may help scientists prepare for the entrance of larger bodies into the Earth's atmosphere.
The 1000-tonne asteroid crashed to Earth in millions of pieces last September, 900km from the nearest humans at Japan's Syowa station.
A trail of dust recorded by a physicist 1500km away at Australia's Davis station shows that if the asteroid had not fragmented into tiny pieces when it hit the Earth's atmosphere, it would have had an impact similar to the bombing of Hiroshima.
Dr Andrew Klekociuk, from the Australian Antarctic Division, said today the event helped scientists prepare for the effects of a larger asteroid hitting the Earth.
"This is just one event and it's the first one to be seen in any detail so we're not sure if it's typical of large meteoroids," he said.
The 10m-wide asteroid part of the "potentially hazardous" Aten group orbiting between Venus and Earth is the largest body to enter the Earth's atmosphere in a decade.
An international effort is underway to track asteroids larger than 1km in size, which could bring "global devastation".
The timing and location of last year's event will be used to test theories relating to the impact of large meteorites on ozone and climate.
Dr Klekociuk said the findings from the latest crash, published in today's Nature journal, were more significant to climate studies.
He said Australian physicist Joseph Zagari discovered the asteroid's dust trail "quite by accident" when he was making atmospheric observations.
Mr Zagari initially thought the trail was a fault in his instrument but the crash was later confirmed by US defence satellites.
Particles contained in the dust cloud have been collected from all three Australian Antarctic stations Davis, Mawson and Casey and will be used to validate models of atmospheric circulation.
"We're modelling in more detail the climate-related effects that this body might have," he said.
Penguins and Polar bears hit hardest
This has got to be Bush's fault.
Why was this not in the MSM?
Huh?? did any one else hear about this back then? Thats pretty scary. you know it is near impossible to detect an asteroid this small on its way to hit us- something coming right at you will not move left or right very much, and will seem like a fixed point of light or worse- it is coming at us from the direction of the sun and will be black in shadow
Look out for the Oort Cloud!
Not to worry the secret weapons at the lost city of Atlantis took care of it. Glad to know the MSM keeps us in the dark.
> AN asteroid the size of a house that exploded with the power of an atom bomb over Antarctica last year ...
Here we go again. Another example of the secular media trying to deny God. There is *no* *proof* that this was caused by an "asteroid." Why are they afraid to report on the *fact* that this was the Finger of God?
Destructionism is winning!
We need to be teaching this alongside the asteroid "theory" in our science classes. In order to wedge this past the ACLU and their atheistic lackeys in the Supreme Court, we'll have to refer to it as the Intelligent Destruction (ID) theory, and leave it to the students to decide who the Intelligence is.
Let's teach both sides of the debate!
I'm willing to bet an a-bomb-esque asteroid hitting Antarctica will melt the polar cap long before some Lysol and plastic bags do.
Several paragraphs into the article they explained that it didn't really explode with the force of an atom bomb all at once, but it was fun to say that it did in the opening paragraphs and would probably also drew more readers in and sold more newspapers.
In general, when fast moving things the size of a house slow to a stop in a very short period of time, a lot of energy is expended. It's sort of like making the statement that 'the collective energy of the ocean tide hitting the Atlantic coast is like an atomic bomb going off every 6 hours'. The amount of energy released is equivalent, but the effect of concentrating all that energy in one tiny place at one time makes all the difference.
If an asteroid explodes on the glacier, and no one's there to see it .. oh, never mind!
Did it land on the wicked witch of the south? Dorothy we are not in Kansas anymore!
I caught that too. Just penguins down there, and some sea lions and the like in summer.
Tell 'em it got in through the ozone hole. Then they'll be interested. ;)
I heard of one that actually detonated over Siberia, in the 20's or 30's I think. Flattened hundreds of square miles of timber. Preety cool, unless you're under it.
That was the famous Tunguska explosion in 1908, probably caused by a fragile meteor or comet that overheating during entry into the Earth's atmosphere and exploded with the force of a 15-megaton thermonuclear bomb at relatively low altitude. That was the reason why strong blast effects were recorded as much as 50 miles away from the point of the blast.
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