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10-Ton Meteor Explodes Over Russia this A.M. --Injuring Hundreds (News VIDEO)



                    UFO Over The Carolina's (Edt) 2-13-12

A 10-ton meteor exploded over Russia's Ural Mountains on Friday, creating a shockwave that blew out windows and injured some 1000 people. NASA detects, tracks and characterizes asteroids and comets passing close to Earth using both ground- and space-based telescopes. The Near-Earth Object Observations Program, commonly called "Spaceguard," discovers these objects, characterizes a subset of them, and plots their orbits to determine if any could be potentially hazardous to our planet.  Looks like this is one object we missed.




The meteor that exploded over Russia this morning is a scary reminder thaat Near-Earth objects  pose both danger to Earth and the opportunity for future mining of space-based minerals, but to date scientists have found only a third of the objects. Experts estimate it will take astronomers 15 years to identify objects that will pose a danger to Earth and even more than 10 times longer to characterize their mineral potential.

In 2011, a NASA orbiter observed that there are only about 20,500 near-Earth asteroids larger than 100 meters, according data from thw Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) spacecraft, which surveyed the skies with an infrared camera. WISE only spotted a few hundred nearby asteroids, but that was enough to project how many are out there. However, astronomers estimate that they have identified only a quarter of near-Earth asteroids 100 meters and up. meanwhile, observations from the WISE mission indicate the family of asteroids some believed was responsible for the demise of the dinosaurs is not likely the culprit, keeping open the case on one of Earth's greatest mysteries.

Around 142.5 million years ago Gosses Bluff crater shown above was formed by an object thought to be around 600 meters in diameter. The crater we see today is actually a lot smaller than the original depression due to erosion. Its diameter currently stands at 5 kilometers m, the original diameter thought to have been closer to 20 kilometers.

Scientists are confident a large asteroid crashed into Earth approximately 65 million years ago, leading to the extinction of dinosaurs and some other life forms on our planet, hiwever, they do not know exactly where the asteroid came from or how it made its way to Earth. A 2007 study using visible-light data from ground-based telescopes first suggested the remnant of a huge asteroid, known as Baptistina, as a possible suspect.

According to that theory, Baptistina crashed into another asteroid in the main belt between Mars and Jupiter about 160 million years ago. The collision sent shattered pieces as big as mountains flying. One of those pieces was believed to have impacted Earth, causing the dinosaurs' extinction.

Since this scenario was first proposed, evidence developed that the so-called Baptistina family of asteroids was not the responsible party. With the new infrared observations from WISE, astronomers say Baptistina may finally be ruled out.

"As a result of the WISE science team's investigation, the demise of the dinosaurs remains in the cold case files," said Lindley Johnson, program executive for the Near Earth Object (NEO) Observation Program at NASA Headquarters in Washington. "The original calculations with visible light estimated the size and reflectivity of the Baptistina family members, leading to estimates of their age, but we now know those estimates were off. With infrared light, WISE was able to get a more accurate estimate, which throws the timing of the Baptistina theory into question."

WISE surveyed the entire celestial sky twice in infrared light from January 2010 to February 2011. The asteroid-hunting portion of the mission, called NEOWISE, used the data to catalogue more than 157,000 asteroids in the main belt and discovered more than 33,000 new ones.

Visible light reflects off an asteroid. Without knowing how reflective the surface of the asteroid is, it's hard to accurately establish size. Infrared observations allow a more accurate size estimate. They detect infrared light coming from the asteroid itself, which is related to the body's temperature and size. Once the size is known, the object's reflectivity can be re-calculated by combining infrared with visible-light data.

The NEOWISE team measured the reflectivity and the size of about 120,000 asteroids in the main belt, including 1,056 members of the Baptistina family. The scientists calculated the original parentBaptistina asteroid actually broke up closer to 80 million years ago, half as long as originally proposed.

This calculation was possible because the size and reflectivity of the asteroid family members indicate how much time would have been required to reach their current locations -- larger asteroids would not disperse in their orbits as fast as smaller ones. The results revealed a chunk of the original Baptistina asteroid needed to hit Earth in less time than previously believed, in just about 15 million years, to cause the extinction of the dinosaurs.

"This doesn't give the remnants from the collision very much time to move into a resonance spot, and get flung down to Earth 65 million years ago," said Amy Mainzer, a co-author of a new study appearing in the Astrophysical Journal and the principal investigator of NEOWISE at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena. Calif. "This process is thought to normally take many tens of millions of years." Resonances are areas in the main belt where gravity nudges from Jupiter and Saturn can act like a pinball machine to fling asteroids out of the main belt and into the region near Earth.

The asteroid family that produced the dinosaur-killing asteroid remains at large. Evidence that a 10-kilometer (about 6.2-mile) asteroid impacted Earth 65 million years ago includes a huge, crater-shaped structure in the Gulf of Mexico and rare minerals in the fossil record, which are common in meteorites but seldom found in Earth's crust.

In addition to the Baptistina results, the NEOWISE study shows various main belt asteroid families have similar reflective properties. The team hopes to use NEOWISE data to disentangle families that overlap and trace their histories.

"We are working on creating an asteroid family tree of sorts," said Joseph Masiero, the lead author of the study. "We are starting to refine our picture of how the asteroids in the main belt smashed together and mixed up."



The one over Russia last night was a mere meteorite, Jupiter sucks 500 miles wide debris of our creation of the solar system. Had it not been for this massive vacuum cleaner, humanity and planet earth would not have survived!! One for the sister Earth! Jupiter ' the cosmic vacuum cleaner ' and our gas giant brotherly neighbour took one heavy blow on the chin at about 11.35 am GMT 22/12/2012.

As the people of Earth carried out their lives unaware, it seems our gas giant neighbour took a forceful blow to the side at about 11.35 am GMT yesterday. On the right is the moment Jupiter was struck by a mighty meteorite 22/12/2012 – and our only record of it is one image, captured by a lone webcam chugging away in the early hours of the morning.

Many astronomers believe life would not have got started on Earth with Jupiter’s influence – and before our solar system settled down, Earth was frequently bombarded with giant impacts. Jupiter has been known as the ‘cosmic vacuum cleaner’ of the solar system. Chicxulub crater in Mexico, is the relic of the massive impact which is believed to have triggered the extinction of the dinosaurs 65 million years ago.

I suppose things like this are a good way to gain perspective on the petty trivialities of modern day living.

The universe sending a hint for you to get a life. suppose things like this are a good way to gain perspective on the petty trivialities of modern day living.

The universe sending a hint for you to get a life.

Pity that Spaceguard missed it. Hope in future it does not happen, though it is quite a difficult task. This reminds us how vulnerable our tiny planet is. It should make us humble before the vast cosmic forces. Humanity should learn to forget its prejudices, pride and differences - racial, religious and social and live in peace and love.

I believe that not too long ago this would of likely set off a nuclear war.

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