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Exact Weight of the Chelyabinsk Meteorite Became Known
February 5, 2015 16:33


The exact weight of the Chelyabinsk meteorite became known.

Chelyabinsk Local History Museum conducted the most accurate weighing of the meteorite. For this purpose the employees established special staging around the showcase and fixed a metal bar on the staging. “First time, when the space fragment was lifted from the bottom of the lake, it was not the scales that got broken, as it is commonly believed, but, namely, the construction to which they were attached. We took this experience into account and assembled a stronger device” - the Head of the Division of Nature of the Local History Museum Eduard Shaigorodsky told.

They lifted the stone three times, so that to put aside all doubts in the accuracy of the results. All three times the number ranged from 505 to 510 kg. And still, the scales stopped at the first mark. “It's electronics” - the South Urals geologist and mineralogist Sergei Kolisnichenko explained.

“Anyway, all these straps holding the stone have their weight, too – so, the readings of the device vary. But this is really nothing, plus or minus five kilograms – this is negligible, it’s only one percent of the total weight. I think 505 kg may be considered the real weight of the meteorite.” According to the expert, this number is very important for further analysis and study of the meteorite. The exact weight is of interest not only for the public, but also for the scientists. Basing on the exact weight, they can also adjust some physical parameters of the meteorite.

“For example, now we know the exact density of the stone - three grams per cubic centimeter. Consequently, we can more accurately calculate how it behaved in the atmosphere: where the decay process took place, where its fragments fell. The places of fall of its another five fragments are still unknown, and they must be sought. In addition, this information is useful for those who will predict arrivals of asteroids to the Earth” - Sergei Kolisnichenko shared his opinion.

According to the measurements conducted, the fragment of the Chelyabinsk meteorite that is kept in the museum is the largest space fragment in Russia. It will still be kept in the Chelyabinsk Museum. Everybody who wishes can see it within the main exhibition, as the Press Service of the Chelyabinsk Local History Museum reports.

Author: Anna Dorozhkina

Tags: Chelyabinsk meteorite     

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