The Impact of Meteorites

Meteorites can cause damage upon impact, from minor to significant. Examples of three major impacts causing significant damage in the last 100 years are included below.

Tunguska

Place

  • Tunguska, Krasnoyarsk | Krai, Russia

Date

  • June 30, 1908

The Impact

  • An air burst comet or asteroid impact damaging over some 2,150 square kilometers or 830 square miles of forested area. No meteorites were ever recovered.

Sikote-Alin

Place

  • Sikhote-Alin, Primorye | Russia

Date

  • February 12, 1947

The Impact

  • A brighter-than-the-sun fireball announced the arrival of an air burst impactor, showering some 28 tons of meteoritic iron shrapnel on the Sikhote-Alin Mountains.

Chelyabinsk Oblast

Place

  • Chelyabinsk Oblast | Russia

Date

  • February 15, 2013

The Impact

  • 1,491 people were injured and over 7,200 buildings damaged by the air burst from this impactor, estimated to weigh 10,000 tons; numerous stone meteorites were found.