Home > Asteroids, Astronomy, Earth, Solar System > Southampton Scientist Investigates Russian Meteor

Southampton Scientist Investigates Russian Meteor


Dr Hugh Lewis, Lecturer in Aerospace Engineering, has analysed the recent extraordinary Russian meteor event using the “NEOImpactor” tool, which was developed by researchers from the University and designed to investigate the risks faced by the Earth from asteroid impacts.

On the morning of Friday 15 February, an asteroid estimated to be the size of a five-storey building entered the atmosphere over the Urals region of Russia and disintegrated. It generated a blastwave that blew out windows and damaged buildings in the city of Chelyabinsk, injuring more than 1000 people. Just a few hours later, the world witnessed the 40 metre asteroid 2012 DA14 pass between the Earth and the ring of geostationary satellites; the closest approach of an object this size for a century.

Dr Lewis explained the significance of the event: “This is the first time that we’ve seen injuries resulting from a collision between the Earth and an asteroid. I think that what surprised most people was the scale of the damage from a relatively small object and the fact that we didn’t have any warning.”

Full Story: http://www.southampton.ac.uk/mediacentre/features/hugh_lewis_russian_meteor.shtml

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