"Joy and pleasure are as real as pain and sorrow and one must learn what they have to teach. . . ." -- Sean Russell, from Gatherer of Clouds

"If you're not having fun, you're not doing it right." -- Helyn D. Goldenberg

"I love you and I'm not afraid." -- Evanescence, "My Last Breath"

“If I hear ‘not allowed’ much oftener,” said Sam, “I’m going to get angry.” -- J.R.R. Tolkien, from Lord of the Rings

Friday, February 15, 2013

Meteor Strike! (Updated)

Fortunately, it hit in a sparsely populated part of Russia, just north of Kazakhstan. 500 people injured, 30-odd hospitalized.

Apparently, Russians habitually install dashboard cameras on their cars. Here's a compilation of some of the videos:

There are more on YouTube, and Chris in Paris has more at AmericaBlog.

And just when we were thinking we were safe from the asteroid.

(I think my favorite part is the pop music on the car radios while this great honking meteor is coming down.)

Update: It could have been a lot worse:

One of the largest ancient asteroid impact zones on Earth has been discovered in north-eastern South Australia.

The impact zone, which centres on the East Warburton Basin near the Queensland border, was caused by an asteroid up to 20 kilometres-wide that slammed into the planet between 298 and 360 million years ago, report scientists from the Australian National University and University of Queensland.

Terrain around the impact site shows evidence of changes caused by shock-wave related deformation and heating of the ground by an impact event, says study co-author, Dr Andrew Glikson from the Australian National University.

"This shock metamorphic terrain covers an area of over 30,000 square kilometres making it the third-largest site of its kind ever discovered on Earth," says Glikson.

Yeah, so, 300 million years ago and in the middle of nowhere. So what?

"The 280 to 360 million years old impact window places this in the same epoch as the late Devonian mass extinction event".

The late Devonian mass extinction was one of five major extinction events in Earth's history, wiping out large groups of marine species.

"There are indications of mass extinction at this time caused by an impact winter, with the huge flash of the asteroid, major fires and seismic events with magnitudes of 10, 11 and 12, which would have disrupted habitats," says Glikson.

A Richter 12 earthquake? You want to try one of those?

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