Visualizing the Russian Meteor Blast


For those that missed it (and considering the massive impact few could), a huge meteorite hit earth last week in Russia. In the land of the dash camera, videos far and wide captured the very rare event in its full shining glory – a missile like streak through the sky and an incredible window breaking crash following soon after. For the Russian population the event was one that stirred memories of the not so distant past, one of the tree flattening Tunguska event in Siberia just over 100 years ago. That blast was the largest impact event on earth in recorded history.

Satellite killers: Meteoroids vs. space junk

At any given time there are somewhere in the neighborhood of 22,000 pieces of debris 10 centimeters or larger zipping along in orbit at speeds of seven kilometers per second, according to the U.S. Air Force. But Sigrid Close, an assistant professor of aeronautics and astronautics at Stanford University, says billions of very tiny meteoroids do more damage to satellites and other spacecraft than all the space junk orbiting Earth.