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Meteorites could be worth big bucks

As Russia assesses the damage from the meteorite shower that rained down Friday on the central region of the country, experts in the US said the fragments of space rock could bring a small fortune in hidden treasure to those quick enough to find and scoop them up.
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Orbit of the Russian Meteor

The meteor hit the atmosphere at a speed of 18 km/s. It was moving at a shallow entry angle (less than 20 degrees) and broke apart some 15-25 km above the Russian city.
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Colorado State University scientists identify visible, infrared imagery left by meteor across Russia

Visible and infrared imagery of the meteor that made a fiery entry into the Earth's atmosphere over the Ural Mountains of Russia has been captured by Colorado State University scientists.
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Re-checked my initial groundtrack calculations using eyewitness observations and reported (and unconfirmed) craters, and used instead satellite data

Google earth file: Chebarkul Crater.kmz (72kb, kmz, version 3)



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IR3.9 thermal image of the Russia meteor taken by Meteosat-9



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Chebarkul meteorite
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Large meteor fragment lands in Russia lake, say police

Scientists are keen to analyse the remnants, found near Chebarkul, a town in Chelyabinsk region.
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Meteor researcher Margaret Campbell-Brown recaps the latest research into the cause of this morning's fireball over Chelyabinsk

We know that the energy of the explosion was about 300 kilotons of TNT equivalent. So it was a very, very powerful explosion. It was the biggest explosion from a meteor that weve seen in the atmosphere since the Tunguska impact of 1908.
We know that the meteor lasted about 30 seconds. It came into the atmosphere at a very shallow angle, which is why it lasted so long. The object was moving at about 18 kilometres per second, which is about 65,000 kilometres per hour, which is typical of an asteroidal speed.
 
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Russia sends clean-up team to meteorite-hit Urals

Mr Putin said he thanked God that no big fragments of the 10-tonne meteor - which was thought to be made of iron and travelling at some 30 km per second - had fallen in populated areas.
It had entered the Earth's atmosphere and broke apart 30-50 km above ground, according to Russia's Academy of Sciences, releasing several kilotonnes of energy - the equivalent of a small atomic weapon.
 
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Chebarkul meteor
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Russian asteroid strike

While precise information on the size, mass and composition of the object are yet to be confirmed, videos show a fireball and explosion consistent with an asteroid up to a few metres in size exploding in the atmosphere, possibly several to ten kilometres above the surface.
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Meteorite hits Russian Urals: Fireball explosion wreaks havoc, up to 1,200 injured

Army units found three meteorite debris impact sites, two of which are in an area near Chebarkul Lake, west of Chelyabinsk. The third site was found some 80 kilometers further to the northwest, near the town of Zlatoust. One of the fragments that struck near Chebarkul left a crater six meters in diameter.
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