An Important Day – Chelyabinsk 4 years later
Today marks the four-year anniversary of the Chelyabinsk asteroid airburst.
You probably recall watching the dash cam video footage of the fireball exploding over the city, which took everyone by surprise. This particular asteroid was only 17-20 meters in diameter, or about 55-65 feet. For comparison, that’s roughly 1½ times the size of an average city transit bus. As far as meteors and asteroids are concerned, it’s relatively small, but as you may remember, it packed a punch. The explosion’s shock wave ultimately injured over 1,500 people and damaged over 7,200 buildings across six cities in Western Russia.
The Chelyabinsk airburst reinforced the need for the world to come together to find a solution to the only natural disaster we are able to prevent. With your help, we are driving forward the research and technology that can make that goal a reality.
As we’ve reported over the last year, the planetary defense community has advanced greatly and we are working towards a moment in our collective existence where we can find an asteroid, predict its orbit, and successfully deflect it. Between several large ground-based telescopes with asteroid detection capabilities and new technologies B612 is researching and testing, we are getting closer to the goal of protecting the Earth from asteroid impacts.
Also, just yesterday, B612 participated in an important international press conference regarding Asteroid Day Global. You can watch the video here and at 9AM ET today there will be Asteroid Day’s regional coordinator press conference where I, along with one of the other Asteroid Day cofounders Grig Richters, will participate. You can watch it here.
Today, let’s take a moment to remember just how important early detection is and also celebrate the advancements the planetary defense community is making.
Yours from asteroid central,
Chief Operations Officer