Chelyabinsk vs Tunguska

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Meteorites were raining like crazy this morning over several locations (Chelyabinsk, Tyumen and Sverdlovsk) in Russia’s Urals region.

The Chelyabinsk meteor event had just taken place… And the videos are just crazy!

Roughly 500 people were injured in the blast. You will see it is scary!

Reports vary from a meteor shower, but the Interfax news agency described the incident as a single meteorite.

No planes, no ufos but a huge meteorite exploding into pieces leading to a meteorite rain over different parts of Siberia.

Witnesses said the explosion was so loud that it seemed like an earthquake and thunder had struck at the same time. Moreover, there were huge trails of smoke across the sky. Others reported seeing burning objects fall to earth.

One of the witnesses said: “My windows were totally smashed, but I first thought that my house is being dismantled, then I thought it was a UFO, and my eventual thought was an earthquake. Just amazing.

In this last video you can see the meteorite exploding resulting in the meteor rain. OMG!

According to unconfirmed reports, the meteorite was intercepted by an air defense unit at the Urzhumka settlement near Chelyabinsk.

A missile salvo blew the meteorite to pieces at an altitude of 20 kilometers, local newspaper Znak reports quoting a source in the military.

A bright flash was seen in the Chelyabinsk, Tyumen and Sverdlovsk regions, Russia’s Republic of Bashkiria and in northern Kazakhstan.

Up to 500 people sought medical attention as a result of the incident, according to the Russian Interior Ministry.

No serious injuries have been reported, with most of the injuries caused by broken glass and minor concussions.

At least one piece of the fallen object caused damage on the ground in Chelyabinsk. According to preliminary reports, it crashed into a wall near a zinc factory, disrupting the city’s Internet and mobile service.

The Emergency Ministry reported that 20,000 rescue workers are operating in the region. Three aircraft were deployed to survey the area and locate other possible impact locations.

Chelyabinsk vs Tunguska

Tunguska vs Chelyabinsk meteor size
Tunguska vs Chelyabinsk meteor size. Picture shows a comparison of sizes Tunguska and Chelyabinsk meteoroids to Eiffel Tower and Empire State Building. By Phoenix CZE, CC BY-SA 4.0 via Wikimedia

Something similar, much bigger, but similar, occured June 30 1908 in Tunguska, Russia.

The Tunguska event was an enormously powerful explosion that occurred near (and later struck) the Podkamennaya Tunguska River Russia, at about 7:14 a.m. KRAT (00:14 UT) on June 30 [O.S. June 17], 1908.

The explosion, having the epicenter (60.886°N, 101.894°E), is believed to have been caused by the air burst of a large meteoroid or comet fragment at an altitude of 5–10 kilometres (3–6 mi) above the Earth’s surface.

tunguska event
Picture via Wikipedia

Although the meteoroid or comet appears to have burst in the air rather than hitting the surface, this event still is referred to as an impact.

The Tunguska explosion knocked an estimated 80 million trees down over an area covering 2,150 square kilometres (830 sq mi).

It is estimated that the shock wave from the blast would have measured 5.0 on the Richter scale. An explosion of this magnitude is capable of destroying a large metropolitan area.

What the the Most Powerful Meteor Explosion?

At about 60 feet in diameter, about 22 million lbs, and traveling about 40,000 mph when it detonated, the Chelyabinsk meteor explosion released as much energy as 20 to 40 Hiroshima bombs about 12 to 15 miles above the Earth.

Tunguska Event
Source: Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

In the Tunguska Event, the meteor is thought to have been about 120 feet in diameter, 220 million lbs, and traveling around 33,500 mph, so a little more than twice the size of the Chelyabinsk’s Meteor.

The explosion during the Tunguska Event is thought to have started about 5 miles in the air above a the Tunguska region, generating as much energy as 185 Hiroshima bombs.

The explosion blew an 800 square mile region of forest flat onto its side, the scorched trees all pointing away from the epicenter.

Suddenly in the north sky… the sky was split in two and high above the forest the whole northern part of the sky appeared covered with fire… At that moment there was a bang in the sky and a mighty crash… The crash was followed by a noise like stones falling from the sky, or of guns firing. The earth trembled.

Now just imagine if the Chelyabinsk meteor would have had touched the ground. Although much less terrifying that the Tunguska space rock, the city and its inhabitants would have been wiped out… Just like the dinosaurs.

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7 COMMENTS

  1. Anyway this could have been heard in the US as a sonic boom earlier? Or is it more likely we had a meteor here as well?

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