AGU Fall meeting: The Chelyabinsk, Russia, meteor

The Russian Chelyabinsk Meteor was the largest since the 1908 Tunguska event. The airburst from the meteor on February 15, 2013, injured more than a thousand people and damaged thousands of buildings.

It marks the first time scientists can study in detail such an event with a range of modern instruments as well as assess its effects on a populated area. This briefing will offer some of the latest findings about the meteor itself, its explosion and effects, as well as how the incident suggests that smaller, more numerous meteors could pose greater threats to populated areas than previously thought.

Watch the video:

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47 Responses to AGU Fall meeting: The Chelyabinsk, Russia, meteor

  1. Gareth Phillips says:

    Great posting, this is a good example of why when I am a confirmed warmest people ask me why I like this site. It because it always makes me question my beliefs and take nothing for granted.

  2. Matthew W says:

    “It marks the first time scientists can study in detail such an event with a range of modern instruments”

    That is incredible!

  3. Mike Bromley the Kurd says:

    Threats. Science is obsessed with them.

  4. Mike Bromley the Kurd sais:
    December 17, 2013 at 8:12 am
    Threats. Science is obsessed with them.
    —————————————————-
    Next: Catastrophic Anthropogenic Meteors.

  5. Beta Blocker says:

    Mike Bromley the Kurd says: Threats. Science is obsessed with them.

    There’s lots of money in it. Lots and lots and lots of money. Not to mention power and influence.

  6. What is a “ton” in this article:

    Metric ton (tonne 1000 kg)
    UK ton (long ton ~1016 kg) or
    US ton (short ton ~907 kg) ?

    Then, what is a “kiloton” ? (Metric, UK or US ?)

  7. Alan Robertson says:

    Gareth Phillips says:
    December 17, 2013 at 8:06 am

    Great posting, this is a good example of why when I am a confirmed warmest people ask me why I like this site. It because it always makes me question my beliefs and take nothing for granted.
    __________________________
    …and because we are kind and tolerant of those who are slow to catch on.

  8. pyromancer76 says:

    This is a “threat” not to take lightly. A lot of this AGW money could have gone to enhancing technology to find and evaporate (or whatever) these threats. All one has to do is look at the cratering (and a comet/asteroid doesn’t have to crater to be highly destructive) on moons/planets without an atmosphere to see the effects and numbers of these things. We have lots of evidence that there have been significant impacts during the Holocene that ended the high points of regional-civilizations. Even though there is controversy regarding the evidence, this is much more of a sure thing than is AGW. I would like a little more obsession in this regard.

  9. Tom G(ologist) says:

    To Alan Robertson: I would agree with your response IF you had put some smiley emoticon after it. Your response implies a Christian-like absoluteness to knowledge. I have been skeptical of AGW sine 1989, so it took me one year to formulate doubts, but after all that time I still concede that I might be wrong.

    Gareth – thanks for the post and the open minded attitude toward knowledge.

  10. mpainter says:

    pyromancer76 says:

    December 17, 2013 at 9:03 am
    <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    This sort of garbage we do not need on this site. Take it somewhere else, please.

  11. Bad Apple says:

    ~ +1:12 … “First ever asteroid impact disaster in human history.” HUH? How can he possibly say that? It may be the first RECORDED … but there is no way he can say something like this has never happened before and impacted somebody. I suppose it’s all part of the language of the institutional scientist these days; make the most alarming, hyperbolical statements you can.

  12. DirkH says:

    Tom G(ologist) says:
    December 17, 2013 at 9:09 am
    “I have been skeptical of AGW sine 1989, so it took me one year to formulate doubts, but after all that time I still concede that I might be wrong. ”

    Without the CO2AGW-induced renewables madness in Germany, becoming a noticeable threat only in 2005 or so, I would never have looked into Mann’s Hockeystick, would never have discovered his denial of the MWP, and would probably still think that the medieval was a dark and bad time. And would never have discovered the tight correlation between European High Cultures and climate fluctuations in general. And much much more.

    So I can thank the globalists for giving me mountains of things to discover (that their media is still completely silent about, and will stay silent about forever).

  13. Crispin in Waterloo says:

    I find it interesting that they are able to make such accurate impact predictions using the science available to them. The difference between this and ‘climate science’ is stark.

  14. RACookPE1978 says:

    I am getting a video error, but, the only thing we can really say is that it “was” the “first to be video’ed” (recorded) in human history, But how did he (the speaker/writer/planner/reviewer/funder/producer) forget about Tunguska – ALSO occurring in the Siberian skies less than 100 years prior?

    Now, I grant that it seems likely that a meteor/comet breaking in mid-air (leaving “only” large crater-less bomb-blast a few dozen miles in diameter is eminently forgettable, but ….. are today’s “scientists” in universities so locked into their iPads and telephones that they have no past?

    By the way, nuclear bomb blast effects are fairly well known.

    Realistically, the ONLY way to determine the difference between a Tunguska-type mid-air breakup and and a deliberate nuclear blast over a city is that “a meteor-comet” breakup is only “randomly” expected over a city, but a nuclear explosion over uninhabited countrysides means it was a comet. Or they missed.

  15. Larry Ledwick says:

    Agust Bjarnason says:
    December 17, 2013 at 8:55 am
    Then, what is a “kiloton” ? (Metric, UK or US ?)

    It is a unit of energy release based (approximately) on the energy released by 1000 tons of TNT and is nominally an energy release of:
    4.2 x 10^19 ergs
    [10^12 calories]
    1.15×10^6 kilowatt hours

  16. Larry Ledwick says:

    should be 10^12 calories

  17. AleaJactaEst says:

    what fantastic science! – working out the life history of a lump of rock that hurtled through our galaxy over 4.3Bya from it’s chemical and geological make up. Puts CAGW voodoo in it’s proper place. Not a model in sight.

  18. Alan Robertson says:

    Tom G(ologist) says:
    December 17, 2013 at 9:09 am

    To Alan Robertson: I would agree with your response IF you had put some smiley emoticon after it. Your response implies a Christian-like absoluteness to knowledge. I have been skeptical of AGW sine 1989, so it took me one year to formulate doubts, but after all that time I still concede that I might be wrong.

    Gareth – thanks for the post and the open minded attitude toward knowledge.
    _____________________
    Consider the smiley face implied, if you would, please.

    I implied nothing related to Christianity, but thanks for the lead- in. What I do find is that it is currently fashionable, from those who seem to have limited understanding, to seize upon just any opportunity take a poke at Christianity.
    The only absolutes I understood from the teachings of the Christ were that we produce our own world from our own thoughts and action and that we can acquire the same state of consciousness as Him if we take up the quest for ourselves, which teachings are parallel and expansive to those of the Buddha.
    What actions may have transpired at the hands of organized religion in its efforts to preserve understanding of the truths of our existence have often served as impediments for many on the road to self- discovery and fruition of consciousness.
    How appropriate that at this time of year we should be discussing another bright (shooting) star in the East.

  19. Jenn Oates says:

    Part of my students’ final exam later this week includes an article about these very data. Excellent. :)

  20. Gareth Phillips says:

    Alan Robertson says:
    December 17, 2013 at 8:59 am
    Gareth Phillips says:
    December 17, 2013 at 8:06 am

    Great posting, this is a good example of why when I am a confirmed warmest people ask me why I like this site. It because it always makes me question my beliefs and take nothing for granted.
    __________________________
    …and because we are kind and tolerant of those who are slow to catch on.

    # Garethman LOL! You should try it sometime, having established beliefs challenged is a very useful tactic for scientific reflection. You never know, you may surprise yourself!

  21. M Simon says:

    Then, what is a “kiloton” ? (Metric, UK or US ?)

    Rounding error.

  22. M Simon says:

    How appropriate that at this time of year we should be discussing another bright (shooting) star in the East.

    Gun control for shooting stars?

  23. timothy sorenson says:

    @Agust, a ton is a lot, and a kiloton is really a lot.

  24. timothy sorenson says:

    @Tom G. I am glad you have been an AGW sine. Would that translate to you waffle?

  25. RACookPE1978 says:

    Nah.

    An AGW sine always cycles about the truth, but only crosses it momentarily.

    An AGW cosine, on the other hand, is always half-right, but only the other half of the the time.

    Note that an AGW cosigner pays their bills. All of the time.

  26. Michael Snow says:

    Just to be clear why many were injured: they heard the sound and rushed to the windows to see and glass shattered from the sound burst.

  27. clipe says:

    Michael Snow

    Just to be clear why many were injured: they heard the sound and rushed to the windows to see and glass shattered from the sound burst.

  28. Max Hugoson says:

    Mr. Snow:

    Just to be clear why many were injured: they heard the sound and rushed to the windows to see and glass shattered from the sound burst.

    Wrong. They SAW THE FLASH! Which was BRILLIANT. Rush to the windows to find out what
    caused that. THEN, about 15 seconds later the sonic boom came. THEN they were injured.

  29. Eustace Cranch says:

    “Just to be clear why many were injured: they heard the sound and rushed to the windows to see and glass shattered from the sound burst.”

    Er… they saw the *light* first. The sound (shockwave) was the part that did the damage.

  30. RACookPE1978 says:

    Eustace Cranch says:
    December 17, 2013 at 12:22 pm (replying to)

    Michael Snow says:
    December 17, 2013 at 12:10 pm (Edit)
    “Just to be clear why many were injured: they heard the sound and rushed to the windows to see and glass shattered from the sound burst.”

    Er… they saw the *light* first. The sound (shockwave) was the part that did the damage.

    It is very ironic that this very specific, very important – but very counter-instinctual !! – ‘Civil Defense training” was applied immediately by the Hiroshima surviors who evacuated the horrors of that city to seek shelter in Nagasaki.

    One, in fact, was actually describing his “flash-boom-blast” experience to his family in Nagasaki when the second A-bomb exploded. They all immediately took cover (away from the windows) and all survived.

    The “laughter” that today’s intellectuals aim at this well-founded “duck and cover” 1950′s training will be what saves a few. And that laughter at good practice and good lessons will be what kills, mains, and blinds millions when the next nuclear bomb or comet blasts above a city. But of course, today’s intellectuals MUST laugh at the lessons of the 50′s because they have been trained to hate and fear what was good about that times. Yes, we ALL need to correct the failures of that period as well, but the good is all the more fervently despised.

  31. Gareth Phillips says:

    Tom G(ologist) says:
    December 17, 2013 at 9:09 am
    To Alan Robertson: I would agree with your response IF you had put some smiley emoticon after it. Your response implies a Christian-like absoluteness to knowledge. I have been skeptical of AGW sine 1989, so it took me one year to formulate doubts, but after all that time I still concede that I might be wrong.

    Gareth – thanks for the post and the open minded attitude toward knowledge.

    # Garethman, And thanks to you to Tom. One of the most difficult challenges on both sides in the debate is how to communicate uncertainty. Some people are very bad at it and resort to ‘ the science is settled’ attitude, others will not accept anything on principle. The reality is that there is a certain weight of evidence on some issues, but there is also much more uncertainty than most people will admit, and much subjectivity when interpreting research results. How to communicate this to both sides without sounding like you are admitting the main principles of your conclusions are wrong? There is a good debate on this site I was pointed to by WUWT. It’s from a warmist perspective, but seems pretty fair. By the way it was a site titled Wotts Up With That? until the host realised that while mimicry is a sincere form of flattery, it undermines your credibility, so she changed the name. http://andthentheresphysics.wordpress.com/2013/12/09/communicating-uncertainty/
    By the way, if we were certain when the next meteor would strike we would be in a useful position, but we don’t, however we do know one will strike at some uncertain point.

  32. Fernando says:

    “This Island Earth” Trailer

  33. Stephen Skinner says:

    If comet ISON was dislodged from the Oort by a passing star some millions of years ago shouldn’t we be looking for others? Why would only one comet be dislodged?

  34. agimarc says:

    Re: mpainter @ 0914:

    “pyromancer76 says:

    December 17, 2013 at 9:03 am
    <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    This sort of garbage we do not need on this site. Take it somewhere else, please.”

    There have been more than a few discussions of the Younger Dryas and what caused it on this site. Perhaps you missed them. Cheers -

  35. Jeff Alberts says:

    If you like your cosmic debris airburst, you can keep your cosmic debris airburst.

  36. Chilli says:

    In the video at 1.50 the speaker says ” It was a minor disaster compared with the very big ones like Fukushima…”. WTF? How many people died in the Fukushima plant? Zero. How does that qualify as very big? I assume he’s confusing it with the Tohoku Tsunami which killed 20,000.

  37. JimF says:

    “Dinosaur” is in cases synonymous with “dead” or “outdated”. Actually dinosaurs completely dominated the world for about 130 million years, commanding every little nook of it, so that pipsqueak creatures like mammals feared for their lives and mostly ended up as food for dinosaurs. However, dinosaurs had the unfortunate experience of riding a train bound for a spectacular collision, one that destroyed their world completely. The same “threat” is out there today. One wonders how some future being will use the word “human” if we fail to rise to that threat made real.

  38. ferdberple says:

    mpainter says:
    December 17, 2013 at 9:14 am
    pyromancer76 says:
    December 17, 2013 at 9:03 am
    <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    This sort of garbage we do not need on this site.
    ===============
    one man’s garbage is another man’s treasure.

    Had cavemen been alive at the time of the dinosaurs we would still be arguing that Fred Flintstone caused the extinction of the dinosaurs. Why should many other mysterious extinctions be any different?

  39. ferdberple says:

    ~ +1:12 … “First ever asteroid impact disaster in human history.”
    =================
    How about Genesis 19?

  40. The Ghost Of Big Jim Cooley says:

    ferdberple, we’re dealing with things that actually happened here, not stories.

  41. _Jim says:

    ferdberple says December 17, 2013 at 8:42 pm
    ~ +1:12 … “First ever asteroid impact disaster in human history.”
    =================
    How about Genesis 19?

    The Ghost Of Big Jim Cooley says December 17, 2013 at 11:46 pm
    ferdberple, we’re dealing with things that actually happened here, not stories.

    Who will be here to record and pass on the ‘happenings’ on the next big ‘RESET’?

    We don’t really know how many times life has been nearly ‘wiped out’ (excepting of course for roaches and ‘slip and fall’ lawyers) on the ‘earf’ due to cosmic-scale events .. or do we?

    I tend to think we’ve been through ALL this before; nothing new under the sun.

    .

  42. E.M.Smith says:

    @ghost of the big jim cooley

    There exists a lot of real in the dirt evidence for the impact that took out S & G. From wriiten records in several other cultures too including direct object sightings and the impact crater…

  43. E.M.Smith says:

    @MPainter.

    Pyromancer is right. Comet Encke started breaking up about 20000 years ago. We pass through two of the debris fields often. Sometimes big chunks take out cities or even continents. Most likely the Younger Dryas impact that ended Clovis culture was a part of it. On about a 350 year cycle we move through the dense part of the field. We are presently away from the most dense, but that is changing. Taurids are not your friend.

  44. Tobias Smit says:

    Seeing that our planet is 75 % water and we are just getting to able to track and monitor small events, could strikes like this have an effect like “Rogue Waves”?

  45. You temperature freaks (god bless you) don’t get it yet. These gentleman and their colleagues (for instance Alan Harris who is mentioned) constantly SUPRESS evidence that there is anything to be concerned about from above. Mark Boslough has trashed peer-reviewed evidence of past cosmic impact in historical times and accused the authors of fraud!: http://cosmictusk.com/holy-hagiography-over-the-top-press-joneses-mark-boslough/

    Boslough has all but said what drives him to diminish evidence of past impacts — which would end technical civilization as we know it — is that does not want to see the public distracted from his and other’s constant political pimping of global warming fears. Look Boslough up. He is a global warming alarmist with few peers, yet has pooh-poohed and ignored vast oceans of data in support of an extremely underated hazard from the sky — the threat he is actually paid to study!

    This is like a panel of the naked king tailors. Phonies on the run.

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