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article imageRussia cleans up — Town hit with 'force of 30 Hiroshima bombs'

By Kev Hedges     Feb 16, 2013 in Science
Chebarkul - According to NASA scientists the meteorite that streaked over the skies of Russia on Friday exploded with a "force of 30 Hiroshima bombs."
The big clean up has now begun with 9,000 workers travelling to the region of the Ural Mountains following the spectacular meteor strike. Almost 1,500 people were injured, 200 of them children, most of whom were hit by flying shards of glass. The shock wave from the explosion shattered windows over an area of about 50 acres.
The fireball streaked through the sky on Friday, before several loud explosive bangs were heard. One large piece of rock was said to have landed in a lake in the town of Chebarkul, where a Russian army spokesperson said a six-metre (20ft) wide crater had been left, as reported in the BBC.
President Vladimir Putin was thankful that no fragments hit any populated regions. The meteorite was made of iron and was moving at a speed of around 19 miles per second. Nasa estimate the meteor would have had a mass of around 10,000 tonnes when it first entered the earth's atmosphere and that the release of energy, as the meteor hurtled towards the ground, was about 500 kilotons, or 30 times that of the nuclear bomb dropped on Hiroshima in 1945, says the Telegraph UK.
The meteor explosion appears to be one of the most spectacular cosmic events above Russia since the 1908 Tunguska Event, where a comet smashed through and blasted a remote area over a century ago.
The drama over the skies in Russia happened just nine hours before an asteroid, 2012 DA14, flew by Earth safely at a distance of 17,200 miles, as reported in Digital Journal on Friday.
More about NASA, Meteorite, Chelysbinsk, Chebarkul, Urals
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