Friday, June 09, 2006

Giant meteorite strikes Norway; likened to Hiroshima bomb

Though it was two weeks later and considerably smaller than predicted, perhaps Eric Julien's comet fragment just smacked into the Earth.

A meteorite whose impact was likened to the "Hiroshima bomb" slammed into a mountainside in Norway on Wednesday, June 7, sending seismic instruments into spasms and scientists into a tizzy. The meteorite was likely considerably bigger than the largest Norweigian meteorite impact on record, one weighing 90 kilograms (198 pounds) that fell in 1904.

Though the impact occured at 2:13 a.m. local time, the area was already drenched in sunshine — it's Norway. The light created by the impact was visible in an area of several hundred kilometers.

Click here to see what it looked like on a seismic chart.

Image: The meteorite streaking across the sunlit midnight sky in Norway, just moments before impact

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