The Russian Academy of Sciences said today a team of their scientists on an expedition near Lake Chebarkul where a meteor fell to Earth have found meteor fragments. When it plunged to Earth 1200 persons were injured in and around the city of Chelyabinsk.
There were reports of a team searching in Lake Chebarkul, in Central Russia, as fragments, including a large piece of the meteor, are believed to have fallen into the lake. However, the meteor fragments the Academy of Science expedition found were on land, in snow near the lake. There was uncertainty at first if the rocks found were rocks native to the area but tests confirmed they are from the meteor.
"We confirm that the particles of a substance found by our expedition near Lake Chebarkul really do have the composition of a meteorite," Russian Academy of Sciences member Viktor Grokhovsky told Russian news agency RIA Novsosti yesterday.
Small, black meteor fragments
The region's Ural Federal University, where Grokhovsky is a professor, has a photo on its website of a small, black fragment in a man's hand and an accompanying story. The fragment looks not unlike a small piece of coal. Scientists said the small fragments were made of metallic iron as well as chrysolite and sulfite.
Grokhovsky said that there is a large hole in the ice of the lake and that suggests a large piece of meteorite fell into it. "It is quite clear that a meteorite is buried there," he said. Officials in the city of Chelyabinsk have cordoned off some areas, including around the lake, as they try to combat private researchers and debris hunters from entering the area.
Some reports say people have offered up to 30,000 rubles ($10,000 U.S.) for meteor fragments.