On January 16, 2018, there were spotted fireballs in the skies over Michigan in the United States.
The next day, the US Geological Survey (USGS) confirmed that it was a meteorite that exploded into the atmosphere.
At the time, the loud “boom” and subsequent quake, which struck approximately 40 miles from Detroit, was reported to be recorded at 2.0 on the Richter scale, but for USGS and NASA, it did not seem like a big deal.
Locals disagreed and 911 emergency lines were flooded with calls.
911 asked everyone to stop calling and calm down.
The big flash of light is recorded on the camera board:
More clips of flash from security cameras in the area:
With all the disaster movies out there, you can see why people panicked.
It has been more than two years since the meteorite fell to Earth, and while scientists were hesitant about its entry, they were quite amplified by the fact that some of them managed to survive the journey through the Earth’s atmosphere.
According to CNN, it is 12 million years old and is covered in more than 2,600 organic compounds, new research has revealed.
“The weather radar aims to detect hail and rain,” said study lead author Philip Hack, curator at the Field Museum in Chicago and associate professor at the University of Chicago.
“These meteorite pieces fell into that size range, so the weather radar helped show the meteorite’s position and velocity. “It meant we could find him very quickly.”
Earth-born elements can change the chemical structure of a meteor, but because it was collected so quickly, within two days, it retained its integrity.
The small meteorite in the picture above was found by Robert Ward, sitting on the frozen surface of Lake Strobery, near Hamburg, Michigan.
“This meteorite is special because it fell on a frozen lake and quickly escaped. It was very clean. “We could see that the minerals had not changed much and we later discovered that they contained a rich inventory of extraterrestrial organic compounds.”
“These types of organic compounds were probably delivered to early Earth by meteorites and may have contributed to the constituents of life.”
Here is what scientists, based in over 24 different institutions, have learned from 2018.
It took the meteorite 12 million years to travel to our planet after separating from its parent asteroid, which formed about 4.5 billion years ago, just about 20 million years after the formation of our solar system.
Here is the engineer Greer, a doctoral student at the Field Museum and the University of Chicago, who worked on the study:
“This meteorite shows a great variety of organic products, with the fact that if anyone was interested in studying organic products, it is not usually the type of meteorite they would want to look at,” Greer said.
“But because there was a lot of excitement about it, everyone wanted to apply their own technique to it, so we have an unusually comprehensive set of data for a meteorite.”
Back to Hack why findings are important:
“The fact that this ordinary chondrite meteorite was rich in organic matter supports the hypothesis that meteorites played an important role in delivering organic compounds to early Earth,” Heck said.
“Meteorites fell on our planet throughout Earth’s history, also before life formed and eventually delivered some of the building blocks for life on Earth.”
Scientists say they are looking for more meteorites.
From me it is good, as long as they are only 5 mm in size.[source:cnn]