Scientists to use blimp to look for meteorites

May 3, 2012

(AP) -- A group of scientists will board a blimp to search for meteorites that rained over California's gold country last month.

The researchers from NASA and the plan to depart from a Sacramento airfield sometime Thursday. From the air, they hope to spot sites where large fragments fell and follow up with a search party.

Since the meteor exploded in the atmosphere over the in late April, swarms of scientists and amateur have recovered tiny pieces from the event, mostly in a region where James W. Marshall first discovered gold in California in 1848.

NASA estimates the minivan-sized meteor released energy equal to one-third the explosive force of the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima. It was seen from Sacramento to Las Vegas.

Explore further: Large Meteor Tracked over Northeast Alabama


Related Stories

Large Meteor Tracked over Northeast Alabama

June 3, 2010

On the evening of May 18, NASA all-sky meteor cameras located at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center and at the Walker County Science Center near Chickamauga, Ga. tracked the entry of a large meteor estimated to weigh some ...

Fireball over California/Nevada: How big was it?

April 25, 2012

( -- A bright ball of light traveling east to west was seen over the skies of central/northern California Sunday morning, April 22. The former space rock-turned-flaming-meteor entered Earth's atmosphere around 8 ...

Meteorites found in Calif. along path of fireball

April 26, 2012

Robert Ward has been hunting and collecting meteorites for more than 20 years so he knew he'd found something special in the Sierra foothills along the path of a flaming fireball that shook parts of Northern California and ...

NASA asks public to provide videos and photos of meteor

April 26, 2012

( -- NASA and the SETI Institute are asking the public for more information to help find amateur photos and video footage of the daylight meteor that illuminated the sky over the Sierra Nevada mountains and created ...

Recommended for you

NASA selects investigations for future key planetary mission

October 1, 2015

NASA has selected five science investigations for refinement during the next year as a first step in choosing one or two missions for flight opportunities as early as 2020. Three of those chosen have ties to NASA's Jet Propulsion ...

Dawn team shares new maps and insights about Ceres

October 1, 2015

Mysteries and insights about Ceres are being discussed this week at the European Planetary Science Conference in Nantes, France. NASA's Dawn spacecraft is providing scientists with tantalizing views and other data about the ...

1 comment

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

not rated yet May 03, 2012
It's not a blimp.
It's a Zeppelin, called the Eureka, based at Moffett Field, CA. They'll be flying low and slow.
It's a sweet ride.

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.