Friday, February 15, 2013

Holy Toledo! Amazing videos of Russian meteor explosion

Russian fireball
Screenshot from the video below by fed potapow

I woke up at 3:00am ET to take my dog out to pee and I decided to hop online real quick. To my amazement I saw news of a fireball (meteor) over Chelyabinsk, Russia at 9:26am local time. Thanks to an abundance of dashboard cams, there are some great videos of the moment the meteor enters the atmosphere!

[Video removed by user]

Apparently the large flash is an explosion that occurred around 32,000 feet - which resulted in a large BOOM heard moments later that shook windows and set off car alarms. (Turn your volume down for this video!!). If this video is real, it's super creepy and impressive! It sounds like Hollywood special effects!

I'm sure this story is going to be all over the Internet, especially with the hype over Asteroid 2012 DA14. Google even released a doodle animation about the asteroid, which now seems even more relevant with this huge meteor story!

Screenshot of Google Doodle animation for Asteroid 2012 DA14
Screenshot of Google Doodle animation for Asteroid 2012 DA14

Hopefully these dramatic videos, along with the close asteroid approach, will bring enough media attention to increase funding for asteroid detection and defense programs. It's a good reminder that these things are out there, and there isn't much we can do (at this point).

Update: Discovery News has a great synopsis of the story so far. Apparently there are 400-500 injuries reported, mostly from broken glass and concussions. Yikes!

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