The power of the Chelyabinsk meteor

Feb 25, 2014 by Elizabeth Howell
Chelyabinsk fireball recorded by a dashcam from Kamensk-Uralsky north of Chelyabinsk where it was still dawn.

Looking at the power of the Chelyabinsk meteor (which struck a year ago and is visible starting around 1:15 in the video above) is still terrifying all these months later. Happily for those of on Earth worried about these big space rocks, the world's space agencies are taking the threat seriously and are starting to implement new tracking systems to look out for more threatening space rocks.

"It was a pretty nasty event. Luckily, no one was killed but it just shows the sort of force that these things have," said Alan Harris, senior scientist of the DLR Institute of Planetary Research in Berlin, in this new European Space Agency video.

An asteroid that is only about 100 meters (328 feet) in diameter, for example, "could actually completely destroy an urban area in the worst case. So those are the things we're really looking out for and trying to find ways to tackle."

This video is not supported by your browser at this time.

Check out the video for some examples of how the Europeans are talking about dealing with this problem, including a fun comparison to cosmic billiards and a more serious discussion on how to shove these rocks aside if they were on a with our planet.

Explore further: Potentially hazardous asteroid 2000 EM26 zipping by Earth on close approach on February 17

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Insight into space collisions from Chelyabinsk fireball

Oct 11, 2013

Scientists from the Czech Republic, Finland, and the Russian Federation are presenting today new findings on meteorites recovered after the Chelyabinsk fireball that exploded over Russia on February 15, 2013. The report was ...

Getting ready for near-Earth asteroids

Feb 03, 2014

(Phys.org) —With a mandate from the UN, ESA and other space agencies from around the world are about to establish a high-level group to help coordinate global response should a threatening asteroid ever ...

Astronomers spot record-breaking lunar impact

Feb 24, 2014

A meteorite with the mass of a small car crashed into the Moon last September, according to Spanish astronomers. The impact, the biggest seen to date, produced a bright flash and would have been easy to spot ...

Video: How the Dream Chaser was built

Jan 29, 2014

The origins of Sierra Nevada Corporation's Dream Chaser go back over 50 years to the US Air Force's and NASA's research into lifting body concepts and the X-20 Dyna-Soar, so this winged, lifting-body spacecraft ...

Recommended for you

Lunar explorers will walk at higher speeds than thought

13 hours ago

Anyone who has seen the movies of Neil Armstrong's first bounding steps on the moon couldn't fail to be intrigued by his unusual walking style. But, contrary to popular belief, the astronaut's peculiar walk ...

Space: The final frontier... open to the public

15 hours ago

Historically, spaceflight has been reserved for the very healthy. Astronauts are selected for their ability to meet the highest physical and psychological standards to prepare them for any unknown challenges. However, with ...

NASA releases IRIS footage of X-class flare (w/ Video)

15 hours ago

On Sept. 10, 2014, NASA's newest solar observatory, the Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph, or IRIS, mission joined other telescopes to witness an X-class flare – an example of one of the strongest solar flares—on ...

User comments : 0