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EKU physicist looks at meteor's impact

RICHMOND, Ky. (WKYT) - It's grabbed attention all around the world. A meteor exploded over Russia Friday, causing panic, damaging buildings, and leaving nearly 1100 people injured.

The meteor exploded on the same day an asteroid whizzed very close to Earth. WKYT talked with a Kentucky physicist about both of the events.

"Something the size of half a football field moving at 15,000 miles per hour is going to make a heck of a boom," explained EKU Associate Physicist Doctor Marco Ciocca of the asteroid that crossed Earth, "you're gonna see a dot that moves. Not no fireworks, no nothing, just pass by."

What happened in Russia was very different from a small spark in the sky.

"It's the equivalent of basically a rock hitting snowbound making a noise," said Dr. Ciocca.

The ten ton rock injured thousands of people outside of Moscow Friday. Most of the injuries came from shattered glass. With all the activity near our planet, some wonder what we can do about it, if anything?

"Wouldn't be much we could do because this thing is so small even if you're talking about something the size of a small car that is coming at 17,000 miles an hour. Its like shooting a bullet with a bullet. It could be done, but the cost would overrun any danger protection."


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