The bus-sized meteor that streaked overhead in Russia had a blast equivalent of approximately 20 atomic bombs, injured more than 1,000 people, and struck panic throughout Moscow, a city of more than one million residents.Here are some more stunning estimates regarding the meteor:
• The space rock struck Earth’s atmosphere with a force of about 300 kilotons, or 25 times greater than the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima in 1945.
• The 55 foot-wide meteor was comprised mostly of iron, weighed about 10,000 tons, and was travelling 40,000 mph when it exploded, according to NASA.
• The shock wave shattered 50 acres of glass in the windows of more than 4,000 buildings in Russia’s Chelyabinsk region during a frigid winter. Nearly 60 per cent of the windows have reportedly been replaced.
• “The impact wave and blast damaged around 297 homes, 12 schools, a number of other social facilities, and some industrial sites,” according to Russian Minister of Civil Defence Vladimir Puchkov.
• More than 24,000 workers and volunteers — with “3,000 pieces of equipment and 8 aircraft at their disposal” — mobilized to the region to cover windows, gather food and make other relief efforts in the face of an estimated $33 million in damages.
The aftermath of the extraterrestrial rock has attracted “meteor hunters” looking to cash in on the “once in a lifetime event.” NASA said the meteor was the largest reported fireball since the Tunguska event in 1908.
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