Close Call Over Russian Skies — Again

As you may know by now, I am fascinated with the night sky. Actually, come to think of it, I am fascinated with the sky, period. I always walk looking up. Hell, I hate to admit it, but on occasion I’ve even been caught looking up while driving. I can’t help it. There are clouds — so many types of clouds! — sundogs, circumzenithal arcs, lightning and much, much more. The sky is a busy and fascinating place where you can get lost.

There are a couple of things I’ve always wanted to see: a tornado and a daytime meteor. I kind of received one of my wishes while living in Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia, so many years ago: one afternoon I looked out of my apartment window and spotted two waterspouts in the ocean. I nearly lost it. It was the coolest thing I’d ever seen.

As for daytime meteors, so far, no luck. But following the events of February 15th, 2013, I’m now not so sure I want to see one.

Unless you’ve been living under a rock (not a space one), you know of the bolide, or meteorite, that roared across the Russian sky that day. The fireball was seen streaking across the sky over Chelyabinsk, which is roughly 1500 kilometres east of Moscow. It is estimated that the fragment of space rock measured 17 metres and weighed about 10,000 tonnes before it entered our atmosphere at speeds of up to 65,000 kilometres an hour. NASA says that it released about 500 kilotons of energy. To keep that in perspective, the atomic bomb that was dropped on Hiroshima in 1945 weighed roughly 13 kilotons. With that much energy, there were consequences.

Was it the rock itself that caused damage? No. It was the sound. Sound. And this is what it sounded like:

When that rock — which by space rock standards was a mere speck, really — burned up through our atmosphere, the energy it released had to go somewhere. And it was released in sound. That shockwave rocked small Russian towns, shattered windows, shocking many people even up to a minute after they saw its vapour trails that hung in the blue sky. Reports say that around 1000 people were injured by the glass from windows that shattered when the shockwave hit.

I can’t lie: I find this absolutely fascinating. For one, this is something from space. That is cool no matter what happens. Two, it’s science at work. Soundwaves that displace so much air . . . wow. Clearly, I don’t want anyone to be hurt. Which is why I now question whether or not I want to see something like this. Nah. I still want to see it. But somewhere safe.

What is also interesting to me is that it also reminds me of our fragility. We exist on our tiny planet under a cover of a thin atmosphere that catches somewhat insignificant space debris all the time. We barely notice the debris: we may see a fast, green streak in the night sky from time to time, but rarely for most people. The atmosphere is our protector. But when things like this happen, it serves as a reminder that the atmosphere can’t protect us from everything. We are lucky to be here. It would take only one large asteroid to plunge into Earth to obliterate all life.

A question that has popped up over the past few days is one that has driven me crazy: “Why didn’t we know this was coming?” I suppose scientists should be flattered that the general public believe that science can predict everything. But that just isn’t the case. Although there is a program to warn us of potentially hazardous asteroids (PHAs), the truth is, they can’t see everything. Like I said, this particular piece of debris was relatively small: our instruments can do only so much. As well, our galaxy is full of wandering bodies left over from its formation. And our instruments can only see small parts of the sky at one time. There is no possible way that we can warn of such things. Not every time. Just be thankful that we can see the large ones coming. And sometimes, only within days.

The ironic thing about this whole event was that it happened on the same day that asteroid 2012 DA14 was to pass 27,000 kilometres from Earth. Close enough to come within the orbit of our geosynchronous satellites, but it wasn’t something that posed a danger to us. Though many assumed that the Russian meteorite was connected with 2012 DA14, it was in no way associated with it.

And, by the way, this is not the first time Russia has had such a close encounter with a meteorite. On June 30th, 1908, at approximately 7:17 a.m. local time, residents near Tunguska, Siberia, were jolted from where they stood when an estimated 220 million pound rock soared through the sky at 54,000 kilometres an hour. Reports say that the impact was felt from as far away as England. It flattened almost 2000 square kilometres of trees and killed wildlife, but there was not one reported human fatality. We should be thankful that this week’s event also spared lives.

Tunguska Event

More on the Tunguska Event HERE

Click HERE to see a compilation of the many videos of the bolide.

51 comments on “Close Call Over Russian Skies — Again”

  1. potencja Reply

    Now, if you are looking for such a brand, you should consider the Bourne shoes.
    The world is really shrinking and ideas are being shared around the globe at a rapid pace.

    Right from the beginning the company had earned great reputation thanks to the quality of its shoes.

  2. como generar ingresos pasivos Reply

    Very nice post. I just stumbled upon your weblog and wished to mention that I have really loved surfing around your blog posts.
    After all I’ll be subscribing in your rss feed and I hope you write once more
    very soon!

  3. Domain jobs Reply

    Also, if you know people who already have domains at any of the above, ask them what
    they think of the domain control panel – having easy access and control
    of your domains is very useful. Regardless of which approach you use, it’s important to be careful not to register a Domain jobs name for a
    product that is already trademarked, as the trademark owner may
    be able to unilaterally confiscate your domain without compensation. STEP TWO: If your desired URL is available it will take you to a page where you can select more
    versions of the URL you chose.

  4. voyance en ligne gratuite et rapide Reply

    Vous vous posez des inquiries dans des domaines plus précis, comme la famille, les
    finances, la vie d’entreprise ou autres, notre équipe de voyants va vous aiguiller vers des solutions adaptées à vos besoins
    en fonction de leurs prédictions personnalisées.

  5. www Reply

    It is best to get involved in a contest for probably the greatest blog pages using the net. I am going to propose our site!

  6. strona Reply

    Your style is really unique compared to other people I have read stuff from. Thanks for posting when you have the opportunity, Guess I will just book mark this site.

  7. www Reply

    The very next time I examine a blog, I hope that it doesnt disappoint me around this. I actually thought youd have something interesting to say, even though i mean, I know it was my choice to read. If you werent too busy looking for attention, all I hear is a bunch of whining about something that you could fix.

  8. link Reply

    I’m very happy to find this great site. I need to to thank you for your time for this particularly fantastic read!! I definitely really liked every part of it and i also have you bookmarked to look at new stuff on your site.

  9. link Reply

    Hello! I simply would want to provide a substantial thumbs up for those outstanding material you possess in this article at this posting. I am going to be returning to your blog for many more very quickly.

  10. www Reply

    Great site you’ve got here.. It’s hard to find good quality writing like yours these days. I seriously appreciate individuals like you! Take care!!

  11. link Reply

    I came across your blog post site on google and appearance a few of your early on blogposts. Keep to take care of the very fantastic deliver the results. I simply supplemental increase your Feed to my MSN Information Website reader. Seeking out forward to browsing significantly more by you down the road! …

  12. strona Reply

    I blog often and I genuinely appreciate your content. Your article has truly peaked my interest. I will take a note of your site and keep checking for new details about once per week. I opted in for your RSS feed as well.

  13. strona Reply

    This is basically the proper website for anybody who wants to discover more about this area of interest. You realize plenty of its nearly not easy to argue on you (not too I actually would want…HaHa). You definitely add a fresh twist for the topic that is been written and published about for ages. Great items, just fantastic!

  14. link Reply

    Right here is the right website for everyone who would like to understand this topic. You understand so much its almost hard to argue with you (not that I really will need to…HaHa). You certainly put a new spin on a topic that has been written about for ages. Excellent stuff, just great!

  15. link Reply

    Great posting. I learn some thing tricky on unique web logs day to day. It will always be revitalizing to check out subject matter using their company writers and practice a small a little something off their stow. I’d would prefer to apply certain when using the written content on my small weblog regardless whether you do not intellect. Natually I’ll present a relationship for your net blog. Thank you for sharing.

  16. www Reply

    Hello there! This post couldn’t be written any better! Looking at this post reminds me of my previous roommate! He continually kept talking about this. I most certainly will forward this article to him. Fairly certain he will have a great read. Thanks for sharing!

  17. link Reply

    Excellent posting. I discover something more hard on numerous personal blogs every single day. It will definitely be stimulating to look at article content utilizing practice and writers a small amount of one thing off their hold. I’d would prefer to apply certain together with the posts in my web site irrespective of whether you do not intellect. Natually I’ll provide a website link onto your online site. Appreciate your discussing.

  18. www Reply

    You sound like you know what you’re talking about, although It’s hard to find knowledgeable people on this topic! Thanks

  19. link Reply

    Notice on with this write down-up, I definitely imagine this excellent website requires much more thought. I’ll probably be all over again to view even more, thank you for that data.

  20. www Reply

    There may be visibly a lot of money to understand this. I assume you made several great spots in functions also.

  21. Kerry Reply

    I am not certain the place you’re getting your information, however good topic.
    I must spend a while studying much more or working out more.

    Thank you for magnificent information I was in search of this information for my mission.

  22. pintu pagar besi Reply

    Hi thjere very nice blog!! Man .. Beautiful ..
    Superb .. I will bookmark your wewbsite and take the
    feeds additionally? I’m satisfied to ssek out a lot of helpful information here in the submit, we’d like work out
    exgra strategies on this regard, thanks for sharing.
    . . . . .

  23. Marylou Reply

    I all the time used to study post in news papers Ьut noww ɑs
    I am а սѕеr οf net
    therefore from noա I am
    &#6489sing net fօr posts, thanks t&#11423

    &#5034lso visit mʏ web site – Marylou

  24. gestapo Reply

    can any post on a personal blog (with disclaimer that it is his personal view) be used by any brand for filing a case against an individual for ‘brand tarnishing’ etc?.

  25. www Reply

    Could I just say just what a reduction to uncover somebody that essentially recognizes what theyre chatting about on the net. You certainly learn how to convey an issue to light and also make it significant. A lot of people need to see this and appreciate this section of your adventure. I cant feel youre not widely used when you most certainly hold the gift.

  26. link Reply

    Good day! I could have sworn I’ve been to your blog before but after browsing through some of the posts I realized it’s new to me. Nonetheless, I’m certainly delighted I came across it and I’ll be bookmarking it and checking back often!

  27. www Reply

    I’d really need to confer with you right here. Which can be not something I usually do! I really like reading through a article that can make customers think. Also, thanks for granting me to opinion!

  28. link Reply

    It’s hard to find knowledgeable people on this topic, but you sound like you know what you’re talking about! Thank you

  29. www Reply

    Howdy! I could have sworn I’ve visited your blog before but after browsing through some of the posts I realized it’s new to me. Anyhow, I’m definitely happy I discovered it and I’ll be book-marking it and checking back regularly!

  30. www Reply

    Right here is the right web site for anybody who really wants to find out about this topic. You know a whole lot its almost tough to argue with you (not that I personally will need to…HaHa). You certainly put a brand new spin on a topic that’s been discussed for ages. Excellent stuff, just excellent!

  31. link Reply

    Hello, I do think your blog may be having browser compatibility issues. When I look at your website in Safari, it looks fine however when opening in IE, it’s got some overlapping issues. I merely wanted to give you a quick heads up! Apart from that, fantastic blog!

  32. www Reply

    there is a very good website listed here! do you wish to make some request topics on my small weblog?

  33. www Reply

    After looking into a handful of the blog articles on your web site, I honestly like your way of writing a blog. I added it to my bookmark site list and will be checking back soon. Please check out my website as well and tell me what you think.

  34. www Reply

    I discovered your site web site on the search engines and check some of your beginning content articles. Keep to keep up the particular decent do business. I really supplemental increase your RSS feed to my MSN Stories Audience. Trying to get toward reading a great deal more from yourself at a later point! …

  35. www Reply

    I am frequently to blogs plus i very appreciate your site content. The article has really peaks my attraction. I am going to bookmark your web site and make viewing for brand new data.

  36. link Reply

    May I simply just say what a comfort to uncover an individual who truly understands what they are discussing over the internet. You definitely know how to bring an issue to light and make it important. More people need to check this out and understand this side of your story. I can’t believe you are not more popular since you most certainly possess the gift.

  37. link Reply

    Soon after understand a few of the articles or content within your web-site now, and i also genuinely such as your means for blogging and site-building. I added it to my bookmark web site selection and are checking returning very quickly. Pls go look at my website too and inform me your opinion.

  38. www Reply

    After looking over a number of the articles on your blog, I honestly like your way of blogging. I book-marked it to my bookmark site list and will be checking back in the near future. Please check out my website too and tell me your opinion.

  39. www Reply

    I would like to thank you for the efforts you have put in writing this blog. I’m hoping to see the same high-grade blog posts from you in the future as well. In truth, your creative writing abilities has motivated me to get my own website now 😉

  40. www Reply

    Oh my goodness! an excellent posting dude. Thank you Then again I am just dealing with problem with ur really simply syndication . Never know why Can not subscribe to it. Is there people gaining exactly the same rss issue? Anyone who is familiar with kindly react. Thnkx

  41. 一部予約販売 正規店最安値 Reply

    本当に私 あなたのウェブサイト .. 素晴らしい色&テーマ。 このサイトについてあなたは なかった自分自身? 作成私はへをしようとしようとするだとして戻って返信してくださいブログとすることを学ぶ見つけるあなたはこのを持ってどこか正確に何テーマはと呼ばれているだけで何という名前が付けられます。 !
    一部予約販売 正規店最安値

  42. 店内全品ポイント10倍 100%新品全半额割引 Reply

    私絶対 愛あなたのブログ .. グレート色&テーマ。 このウェブサイトあなたは作る作成なかった自分自身? 私の非常に自身の作成私はに計画だとして戻って返信してくださいブログとすることを学ぶ見つけるあなたはこのを持ってどこか何テーマはと呼ばれているだけで何という名前が付けられます。 おかげ!
    店内全品ポイント10倍 100%新品全半额割引

  43. baofeng uv-5r group Reply

    However, Sirius gives you game alerts, 30 presets and lists
    all of your favorite teams in one category with all the Sportster and Streamer satellite radios.
    Two more nifty features: album art and favorite station autoplay.
    baofeng uv-5r group gt 3
    radio I realize that 5 points are a lot more than enough to direct
    the flow with the interview.

    It is essential to get a excellent radio set (or multiple sets.

    Baofeng legal Kris: Now Tenzin, it sounds like your whole idea about money has evolved quite a bit through writing Rich Brother, Rich Sister.

    This week’s show is all about who do you have to be not inside the future but right now in the present
    to successfully.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>