Friday, December 15, 2017

Russian divers hunting for Chelyabinsk meteor discover smaller meteorite

Divers in Russia's Ural region recovered a small meteorite on Tuesday while trying to fish a huge chunk of meteorite from the bottom of a lake in Chelyabinsk.

The biggest chunks of the 10,000 metric ton meteorite that exploded over the Chelyabinsk region in February landed in Chebarkul Lake, according to RIA Novosti.

Workers are now pumping silt from the lakebed in an effort to recover the meteorite, which is believed to be under 2.5 meters of silt.

During the recovery, divers discovered a smaller meteorite, also covered by silt. The meteorite was revealed to be the size of a human fist. Ural Federal University says it was lifted from a depth of 13 meters in Lake Chebarkul.

"I received images of this object, which according to members of the expedition has slight magnetic properties and has a brown crust with traces of smelting," Viktor Grokhovsk, the founder and head of UrFU's meteorite expedition, said, RIA Novosti reports. "I confirmed that this indeed was a meteorite."

The Chelyabinsk meteorite exploded over the city just after Valentine's Day, leaving 1,500 injured, mostly as a result of shattering glass from the shockwave of the blast. The space rock is a typical chondrite, or non-metallic meteorite.