Russian meteorite shockwave traveled twice around Earth


The shockwave from a meteor that exploded over Russia’s Ural Mountains was so powerful that it travelled twice around the earth, scientists have said. The 10,000 tonne rock, measuring around 55 feet in diameter, created a huge hole in a frozen lake when it crashed into the ground in February and is said to have injured almost 1,500 people.
The tremors from the explosion above Chelyabinsk city were recorded at around 20 monitoring stations across the world, it has today been revealed. The stations are part of the International Monitoring System network operated by the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organisation.
They are designed to detect nuclear weapon tests, and look for ultra-low frequency waves known as infrasound, the Independent reports.
The findings were published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters.
It said it was the first time the stations had ever noted ‘multiple arrivals involving waves that travelled twice round the globe’ and teams said it was the ‘most powerful ever recorded’. Since it crashed to earth in February, scientists have found more than 50 tiny fragments of the meteor, allowing them to uncover information about its contents.
Local residents have been more interested in the black market value of the fragments since the dramatic incident, as a ‘gold mine’ has been kickstarted for the valuable pieces.
As they search for their own pieces of the meteor, rocks have already been put on the internet for sale, and police are warning all purchasers to prepare for possible fraud.
The meteor injured nearly 1,500 people and caused widespread property damage in Chelyabinsk city.
The debris narrowly missed a direct and devastating hit on the industrial city which has a population of 1.13 million but spread panic through its streets as the sky above lit up with a blinding flash.