Science story of the day - Meteor over the Urals

There really is only one news story to talk about today. The awesome spectacle of the meteorite breaking up over the Russian city of Chelyabinsk.

The Russian space agency Roscosmos has estimated that the meteorite was travelling at a speed of 30 kilometers per second when it exploded. To put that in perspective that's almost the same speed that the earth travels in orbiting the sun and is something like 88 times the speed of sound.

Thanks to the ubiquitous phone camera and Russias fondness for dashboard cameras, this is probably the most captured meteorite event, with videos being uploaded to youtube almost as soon as the meteorite had passed by.

And just to put this event into perspective here's a TED talk by astronaut Dr Ed Lu on what's out there and what we need to do to start making sure we don't get a terminal surprise.

Update:

NASA has a page for the meteor here: http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/asteroids/news/asteroid20130215.html

They believe the Asteroid was 55 feet long, travelling at 18kp/h and weighed in at around 10000 tons. The total amount of energy released was the equivelant of 500 kilotons of TNT.

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