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Small asteroid strikes earth Tuesday, 07 October , 2008, 14:09
New Delhi: It was a spectacular show in the sky early Tuesday morning, when a small asteroid entered the earth's atmosphere releasing a huge amount of light and energy before exploding.
The asteroid, 2008 TC3, entered the earth's atmosphere at 2.46 am (GMT) in Sudan (Africa). The asteroid was also visible in Europe but not in Asia.
"Measuring only a few meters across, the space rock created a spectacular fireball, releasing huge energy as it disintegrated and exploded in the atmosphere," Director of Nehru Planetarium N Rathnashree said.
RELEASE : 09-33AR
NASA Sets Teleconference to Discuss Recovered Meteorites
WASHINGTON -- NASA will hold a media teleconference on Wednesday, March 25, at 2 p.m. EDT to reveal science findings from recently discovered meteorites. The meteorites originate from a small asteroid that entered Earth's atmosphere over the Nubian Desert of northern Sudan on Oct. 7, 2008. The discovery presents scientists with an unprecedented opportunity to understand these nomads of the solar system better.
What did you find when you analyzed the meteorites?
[The meteorites belong to a known type, but they are] different from the ones that have been recovered before, in the sense that [they're] very fragile and very dark, because there's lots of carbon. It's material that was heated so much that part of the rock became fluid but not the whole rock. It illustrates what happens in a certain phase of planet evolution before things get all molten (see Magma oceans sloshed across early asteroids).
We can now say with certainty that this dark variety corresponds to F-class asteroids. There are many ideas about how these rocks formed, so we're hoping that this meteorite will be able to differentiate between them. That's sort of a next step in the study.
The ureilites are named for Novo Urei, a rural village in the Mordova Republic, Russia, where several meteorites fell in late 1886. It has been reported that one stone was soon recovered by local peasants - but not to preserve it for science. On the contrary, the stone was immediately broken apart and eaten! The report does not reveal the reason for this odd behaviour - maybe they ate it because the freshly fallen meteorite smelled good, or perhaps because it had the typical shape of a loaf of bread, which a ureilite often resembles. However, not all of the stones were eaten, and Novo Urei became the type specimen of one of the best-represented achondrite groups in our collections. The ureilite group comprises about 60 members, again, excluding all probable pairings from the hot deserts of Africa and the ice fields of Antarctica.