NASA researchers have released a video explaining the meteor that hit Russia's Ural mountains earlier this month
If you haven't seen the amazing footage captured by Russian citizens of a meteor streaking overhead before disappearing into the Ural mountains, stop reading now and go check it out.
Back? Good. NASA has released a video explaining some of the science behind the meteor which had nothing to do with the 2012 DA14 asteroid passing over the Earth just 17,200 miles away. According to the researchers, it was a "one-in-a-million coincidence" that the incidents took place on the same day.
"The asteroid was about 17 meters in diameter and weighed approximately 10,000 metric tons," according to Peter Brown, professor of physics at Western Ontario, who is quoted in the video.
"It struck Earth's atmosphere at 40,000 mph and broke apart about 12 to 15 miles above Earth's surface. The energy of the resulting explosion exceeded 470 kilotons of TNT." Which is about 23 times the power of the first Atom bomb dropped on Hiroshima.
The video goes on to explain that the meteor came into the atmosphere at an angle of 20 degrees and lasted for perhaps 30 seconds before exploding. Apparently it was made up mostly of stone, with a bit of iron - fragments of which are now scattered across the Ural countryside.
We've embedded the video below for your viewing pleasure.