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carolyn
2004-Jan-06, 07:40 AM
did anybody else see the report by chanel 4 (uk) on fireballs streaking through the sky in spain (i think it was spain) I wanted to follow the story, anybody got any good sites on this one?

reminds me of the Welsh story last year... hmmm

kashi
2004-Jan-06, 10:15 AM
I saw that. Supposedly a 100 tonne meteorite. A pretty close call if you ask me! http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/3368997.stm

BBC is always a good source for science stories. Fraser, perhaps you can write this one up in the newsletter.

Biscay
2004-Jan-06, 11:55 AM
Yep! 100 ton meteorite confirmed. "Landed" in Palencia, not far from where I live. Itīs now being analized.

kashi
2004-Jan-06, 11:58 AM
Wow. Do you know the diameter of the object at the time that it hit? That's gotta leave a reasonable sized dent!

Biscay
2004-Jan-06, 12:20 PM
No, hold on. The size and weight of it are just estimations. The meteorite didnīt impact directly. Air friction broke it into pieces and it is now scattered in a 15 mile area. Sorry, no sci-fi movie!

damienpaul
2004-Jan-06, 01:26 PM
darn, i saw it on the news, looked spectacular.....

carolyn
2004-Jan-06, 06:17 PM
Originally posted by Biscay@Jan 6 2004, 12:20 PM
No, hold on. The size and weight of it are just estimations. The meteorite didnīt impact directly. Air friction broke it into pieces and it is now scattered in a 15 mile area. Sorry, no sci-fi movie!
one feels that that is probably a good thing over all B) :)

damienpaul
2004-Jan-06, 10:29 PM
i am rather relieved by that too

tycho1981
2004-Jan-07, 02:42 AM
i saw in newspaper too that if that fireball impact on spain city then that should be most awful disaster ever! why we did nt know of that 100 tons fireball ?? we don't have a good earth observation protection :0

damienpaul
2004-Jan-07, 02:45 AM
i believe that there are so few people looking that almost most of the planet is 'unprotected'

kashi
2004-Jan-07, 07:34 AM
It is a relief to know that large objects can enter Earth's atmosphere and break up to the extent that they are not very harmful. I wonder what the ratio of large meteorites that disintegrate: large metoerites that remain in tact is like. ;)

tycho1981
2004-Jan-07, 10:47 AM
but that fireball was big harmful enough to descent in a whole piece on earth, we were lucky.

DippyHippy
2004-Jan-07, 11:05 PM
The original story (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/europe/3368997.stm) is here on the BBC site... there's also a follow-up story. (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/europe/3371815.stm)

I'm surprised this wasn't more widely reported, at least here in the UK...

kashi
2004-Jan-08, 12:34 PM
But experts from the Superior Council for Scientific Investigations said later that these craters had no relation to a meteorite.

I don't understand. What did they have relation to then?

Biscay
2004-Jan-08, 03:21 PM
Donīt know but what really cares is what Carolyn and Tycho said. Why wasnīt that meteorite detected? What if a bigger one impacted some city? Could you imagine the consecuences? Can this meteorite be the prelude of an incoming bigger asteroid/meteorite?

DippyHippy
2004-Jan-08, 10:01 PM
Biscay, that's exactly what I was wondering - Phil Plait explains about smaller meteorites warning us of a much larger rock on hisBad Astronomy (http://www.badastronomy.com/) website. It's part of his debunking of the movie Armageddon - have a look here (http://www.badastronomy.com/bad/movies/armpitageddon.html) and scroll down to where it says
Bad:
The big asteroid is preceded by lots of little ones which hit New York City, Paris, Shanghai, etc. etc.

Basically he says that any smaller chunks preceding the big one would have dispersed by the time they reached the Earth.

But what you and others have wondered about the lack of detection is quite correct: I'm afraid it's still true that we're still finding rocks that have passed very close to the Earth after they've whizzed by - if those rocks had been on a collision course, the first we'd have known of it would be when the sonic booms hit our ears. (Shortly followed by the rock hitting the ground)

Biscay
2004-Jan-09, 03:47 PM
Thanks for the explanation DippyHippy! I guess that means that the big one will be late again for mealtime tomorrow. Shame! Anyway, what I think I understood is that if a meteorite (big one I mean) would be coming it would shine as much as a star. How couldnīt it be detected then? How big has an asteroid to be to be a "Dinosaur killer", a Mass-destruction" one?? And the most important, will I be able to sleep tonight? :(

Littlemews
2004-Jan-09, 08:31 PM
How couldnīt it be detected then?
There is a special group in NASA who working with this, by calculating the direction they move and how fast it moves...I think


How big has an asteroid to be to be a "Dinosaur killer", a Mass-destruction" one?
The one that similiar to the one call "Ceres" I guess :)


And the most important, will I be able to sleep tonight?
good question :lol: put some sleep gas in ur room, then u can sleep forever LOL

DippyHippy
2004-Jan-09, 10:17 PM
Biscay, based on a simulation I ran with Starry Night, I'd say you wouldn't be able to see the rock with your unaided eye until it was too late to do anything about it anyway. My theoretical asteroid brightened from magnitude 4 to magnitude -0.6 in final 30 minutes before it hit the Pacific, just south of Hawaii. (Based on a kilometre wide chunk of rock)

Littlemews, no, it only has to be 200 metres across and to come within 7.5 million kilometres of the Earth to be classed as a Potentially Hazardous Asteroid (PHA). A chunk of rock a kilometre wide would do some extremely serious damage (possibly extinction level, but don't quote me on that)

NASA has a good website on Near Earth Objects at http://neo.jpl.nasa.gov/

kashi
2004-Jan-10, 12:47 AM
That's a very worthwhile site indeed. I love the orbit simulations they have there.

Littlemews
2004-Jan-10, 12:49 AM
Golevka is the close one... what about Icarus?

Bluewolf027
2004-Jan-10, 07:24 AM
The reason something like this could easily go undetected is because we don't have enough observatories, astronomers, etc to possibly cover the whole sky. Unless something coming is huge it very easily could go undetected.

Biscay
2004-Jan-11, 04:46 PM
What about nuking them PHEs or NEOs or NEAs, or however they are called into pieces?