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The reason behind an exploding meteoroid before reaching Earth revealed

In A Bid To Find The Reason Behind The Explosion, Melosh’s Team Sneaked Into The 2013 Chelyabinsk Event, When A When A Meteoroid Exploded Over Chelyabinsk, Russia.

News Nation Bureau | Edited By : Kajol | Updated on: 13 Dec 2017, 09:11:41 AM
Revealed!! Researchers find reason behind explosion of meteoroids before reaching Earth (NASA)

New Delhi:

In the latest breakthrough research, the reason behind the explosion of Meteor before reaching the earth has unleashed.

According to a study, when a meteor rushes towards Earth at enormous speed, the high-pressure air starts filling into its seeps, pores and cracks which exerts pressure on its wall leading to its detonation.

The recent research was published in the journal Meteoritics & Planetary Science.

The study further revealed that our atmosphere is a better shield from meteoroids than previously thought.

"There is a big gradient between high-pressure air in front of the meteor and the vacuum of air behind it," said Jay Melosh, a professor at Purdue University in the US.

"If the air can move through the passages in the meteorite, it can easily get inside and blow off pieces," said Melosh.

Researchers always knew that meteoroids often blew up before they reach the Earth's surface, but they did not know why.

In a bid to find the reason behind the explosion, Melosh’s team sneaked into the 2013 Chelyabinsk event, when a when a meteoroid exploded over Chelyabinsk, Russia.

As per the researchers, the explosion of meteoroid brought in energy which is comparable to a small nuclear weapon.

When it entered Earth's atmosphere, it created a bright fireball. Minutes later, a shock wave blasted out nearby windows, injuring hundreds of people, they said.

The weight of the meteoroid is around 10,000 tonnes, but at the site only about 2,000 tonnes of debris were found which indicated that some mystery behind in the upper atmosphere that caused it to disintegrate.

The researchers used a unique computer code to find the solution to a perplexing situation. Under that, both solid material from the meteor body and air to exist in any part of the calculation.

"I have been looking for something like this for a while," Melosh said.

"Most of the computer codes we use for simulating impacts can tolerate multiple materials in a cell, but they average everything together.

"Different materials in the cell use their individual identity, which is not appropriate for this kind of calculation," he said.

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This new code allowed the researchers to push air into the meteoroid and let it percolate, which lowered the strength of the meteoroid significantly, even if it had been moderately strong to begin with.

While this mechanism may protect Earth's inhabitants from small meteoroids, large ones likely would not be bothered by it, Melosh said.
Iron meteoroids are much smaller and denser, and even relatively small ones tend to reach the surface.

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First Published : 12 Dec 2017, 08:17:09 PM

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