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Small Asteroids Pose Bigger Threat Than Thought

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posted on Dec, 23 2007 @ 01:59 AM
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Small Asteroids Pose Bigger Threat Than Thought


www.foxnews.com

The infamous Tunguska explosion, which mysteriously leveled an area of Siberian forest nearly the size of Tokyo a century ago, might have been caused by an impacting asteroid far smaller than previously thought.

The fact that a relatively small asteroid could still cause such a massive explosion suggests "we should be making more efforts at detecting the smaller ones than we have till now," said researcher Mark Boslough, a physicist at Sandia National Laboratory in Albuquerque, N.M.

The explosion near the Podkamennaya Tunguska River on June 30, 1908, flattened some 500,000 acres (2,000 square kilometers) of Siberian forest.

Scientists calculated the Tunguska explosion could have been roughly as strong as 10 to 20 megatons of TNT — 1,000 times more powerful than the atom bomb dropped on Hiroshima.
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posted on Dec, 23 2007 @ 01:59 AM
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New supercomputer simulations suggest that the asteroid that caused the extensive damage was much smaller than we had thought. They have reduced the size estimates from 100 down to 65 ft diameter. The poor health of the forest in the impact area contributed to more knockdown of the trees thus falsely increasing estimates of the original blast.

www.foxnews.com
(visit the link for the full news article)



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