Russian meteorite fragments found

Scientists think they’ve found the remains of the 7,000-ton meteor that caused a ruckus in Russia on Friday. A 20 foot-wide hole was discovered in frozen Lake Chebarkul, about 50 miles from the city of Chelyabinsk, and researchers picked out 53 fragments of the meteor, all of which are smaller than a centimeter.

However, the meteor’s crash site is still a bit of a question. The Emergency Services Ministry conducted a dive in the lake on Saturday and says they found no trace of the space rock.

What is known is the terror the fiery ball made when it hit the Earth’s atmosphere last Friday morning. People living in the area said the meteor grew as bright as the sun as it burned up and windows shattered from the sonic boom. More than 1000 people were hurt.

Unfortunately, there’s no good way to prevent future impacts of, if not devastating, then considerably damaging meteors and asteroids. NASA keeps its lenses focused on asteroids a half mile wide or more, which can cause Armageddon-like damage to the planet. While the agency reports on smaller projectiles headed toward Earth if they catch them, those are much more likely to slip through the cracks, and we can expect more events like that over Chelyabinsk in the future.

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