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Russian meteor strike : Swingers Discussion 2171041031
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TOPIC: Russian meteor strike
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Yes, the windows blew out as a result of the percussion wave generated from the explosion. The explosive force itself was too high to cause significant damage on the ground.

If that 100-400 kt explosion happened at, say, 2 km altitude, we'd be looking a flattened city, not just shattered windows.

If it reached the ground, *all* of the energy is transferred as explosive force. While this the most "energetic" scenario, it's actually less dangerous (except to those immediately below it) than a low altitude air burst, because much of the energy is consumed in "earth moving" - i.e. digging out a crater.

Chesapeake VA
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Maybe it blew out more windows *because* it blew apart at high altitude. If it had hit the ground as a single mass, it might have made a bigger crater and knocked down more trees.

Flat Rock NC
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As just a point of discussion..

Some physical phenomena occur at such incredible speeds and pressures which are difficult to study, since we really aren't capable of propelling large objects to such incredible speeds and then driving them into the atmosphere. Spacecraft can reach this speed, but they are not solid pieces of rock, and if their re-entry is not carefully controlled they too will blow apart into zillions of pieces. A spacecraft does most of its atmospheric braking in the upper atmosphere where it's not nearly so dense and thus generates much less heat and pressure, and the re-entry is spaced out over much longer time frames. A Space Shuttle re-entry, for example, distributes the "pain" over the course of about 30 minutes, not 2 seconds.

Chesapeake VA
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When you shoot a watermelon with a bullet, it explodes. It's not because bullets or watermelons are explosive. It's because of the dispersion of kinetic energy from the bullet into the watermelon.

This happens because of a pressure differential. The rock (other than its surface) doesn't really have time to heat up during its 2-5 second trip through the atmosphere, but the rate at which the heat and pressure at the leading edge of the rock builds is enormous.

You have a near-vaccuum in area immediately behind the meteor, and a super-heated high pressure pocket of air in front of it. The pressure actually causes the rock to become oblate (flatten), which increases drag, which increases pressure, causing more flattening, more drag, more pressure etc. This all happens very quickly. It reaches a point at which the rock simply shatters and vaporizes in a spectacular fashion.

The explosive power is derived entirely from the kinetic energy the meteor carries with it. It is estimated that this rock was about 50 feet in diameter (weighing around 5,800 tons) and traveling at least 33,000 mph (about 14,500 m/s)...

The available kinetic energy is:

e = 1/2 mv^2

m = 5,800,000 kg v = 14,500

e = 6.24 x 10^14 J

This is ~0.8 MT of TNT equivalent.

Of course, not all of the energy is put into the explosive force of vaporizing the rock - some is retained as momentum in the shattered pieces.

In practice, my guess is that this will be the equivalent of a 100-400 kiloton nuclear warhead - equivalent to some of the largest fission weapons. The saving grace was the altitude at which it occurred - looks to be about 30-50 km / 20-30 miles above the ground.

Chesapeake VA
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outdoors, I wonder... It does sound like it exploded. So maybe because of the speed it was traveling the sound was from the breaking up of the 10 ton rock. The fireball I seen at night was trailing green, blue and yellow and then a burst effect. There was an explosion sound. So I imagine, not a sonic boom, but just the breaking up of the meteor.

Chesapeake VA
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I thought everything east of the Urals was Siberia. Did this meteor actually "explode"? Or was it just the sonic boom as it passed by, that blew out windows and doors and roofs?

Rocks aren't particularly explosive, even when superheated. Some encapsulated water ice, or other volatile, might burst. But it doesn't seem that there was a local explosive event.

Flat Rock NC
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HAHAHA My friend says, "So, I hear a meteorite damn near took out Russia. Waiting for the Democrats to decide if it was the result of global warming, if it's STILL Bush's fault, or if it was because Marco Rubio took a drink of water."

Chesapeake VA
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More video is turning up all the time. I find this fascinating.

I was mistaken in thinking this was in Siberia. It's actually quite a large city about 1,000 miles east of Moscow, near the Kazakhstan border. What a catastrophe this would have been if it had been larger (Tunguska-sized) or had exploded closer to the ground.

Chesapeake VA
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I just looked at all the videos linked in the OP. Only one of them seems to show the meteor streaking overhead, and also recording the sonic blast.

Obviously, the alien overlords have sucked up the Iranian underground nuclear lab and detonated it in another part of the world. This after distracting us by sending an asteroid our way.

Flat Rock NC
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I'm sure we'll have a whoooole lot of dummies who are convinced of all kinds of stupid explanations and will repeat them ad nauseum.

Just last week a CNN anchor asked Bill Nye if the asteroid passing today was from "global warming". Seriously. I'm sure there will be people who say that's what caused this too.

There will be alien theories. Top secret military theories. etc. Whenever anything incredible happens, it has the effect of dragging the loonies out into the sun.

Chesapeake VA
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TOPIC: Russian meteor strike