Oct 6

Asteroid TC3 2008 tracked for a direct hit

In this breaking story, Asteroid TC3 2008 only just discovered yesterday is predicted to hit earths atmosphere above Sudan and be visible across most of eastern Africa.

Estimated time for the strike is 02:46 UTC on the 7th of October

Fortunately for the people of Sudan this Asteroid will explode harmlessly in the upper Atmosphere with a force of 1 Kiloton. This should be quite a spectacular event and we can only hope that it is well filmed.

The significance of

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this event is not so much the impact itself, but the fact that we have been able to identify and track an object which will intersect the earths orbit and very likely hit the upper atmosphere. Especially an object that is only a few meters in diameter, this bodes well for finding larger and potentially more dangerous objects.

The Predicted entry charicteristics from JPL:

“The fireball, which could be brilliant, will travel west to east (from azimuth = 281 degrees) at a relative atmospheric impact velocity of 12.8 km/s and arrive at a very low angle (19 degrees) to the local horizon. It is very unlikely that any sizable fragments will survive passage through the Earth’s atmosphere “

Stay tuned to AskTheScienceGuru for more updates as events unfold ……..

UPDATE: OK … Asteroid TC3 should have impacted the Atmosphere above Sudan by now, crossing over the red sea.

I would so love to be there to see this. I guess i will have to watch it on Utube too …. Stay tuned for more updates !

Post Impact Update:

Meteorologist Jacob Kupier from the Netherlands has the following report:

“I have received confirmation that a KLM airliner, roughly 750 nautical miles southwest of the predicted atmospheric impact position, has observed a short flash just before the expected impact time 0246 UTC. Because of the distance it was not a very large phenomenon, but still a confirmation that some bright meteor has been seen in the predicted direction.”

The latest confirmation comes from spaceweather.com on the 8-10

“An infrasound array in Kenya recorded the impact. Dr. Peter Brown of the University of Western Ontario has inspected the data and he estimates that the asteroid hit at 0243 UTC with an energy between 1.1 and 2.1 kilotons of TNT. Most of the 3-meter-wide space rock should have been vaporized in the atmosphere with only small pieces reaching the ground as meteorites”

Spacefans the world over are still waiting for some photographs and I would like to bet meteorite hunters are pretty excited too !

[podcast] http://www.nightskysecrets.com/Asteroid%202008%20TC3.mp3 [/podcast]

1 comment

1 Comment so far

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