NASA Scientists: Russian meteor added new layer to the atmosphere
Scientists have tracked the dust plume and watched it dissipate around the globe.
A NASA team has found that the meteor which blazed over the Russian city of Chelyabinsk last February, left behind a massive plume of dust which has created its own layer in the atmosphere.
That dust continues to dissipate around the planet, concentrated mostly in the northern hemisphere. Scientists are curious to learn whether that dust has any effect on cloud formation.
According to NASA, the Earth accumulates about 30 metric tons of space dust every day. Most of that floats in the atmosphere, and some eventually settles on the ground, virtually impossible to detect.
However, new satellite technology is allowing NASA scientists to track the dust from the February 15 impact, and monitor how it spreads around the globe.
According to Paul Newman, chief scientist for NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center's atmospheric science lab, "Thirty years ago, we could only state that the plume was embedded in the stratospheric jet stream. Today, our models allow us to precisely trace the bolide and understand its evolution as it moves around the globe."
Hundreds of tons of dust remain in the atmosphere following the impact, and researchers managed to track the formation of a new dust belt in the stratosphere using NASA's Sunomi NPP satellite according to space.com.
Physicist Nick Gorkavyi, who according to the website is from Chelyabinsk, and now leads a team of NASA Goddard atmospheric scientists, said in a statement, "Indeed, we saw the formation of a new dust belt in Earth's stratosphere, and achieved the first space-based observation of the long-term evolution of a bolide plume."
Measurements taken less than four hours after the meteor's explosion revealed a layer of dust 25 miles high, being carried east by the wind at about 190 mph.
Since then, the heavier particles have moved more slowly, and have dropped lower in the atmosphere or wind speeds are lower, and they are more likely to fall to the ground soon. Like particles however have continued on their journey circumnavigating the northern hemisphere, carried high aloft by the swift winds there.
According to space.com, the study is ongoing and the paper regarding the work will shortly be published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters.
© 2013, Distributed by NEWS CONSORTIUM.
Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for December 2013
General Intention: Victimized Children. That children who are victims of abandonment or violence may find the love and protection they need.
Missionary Intention: Prepare the Savior's Coming. That Christians, enlightened by the Word incarnate, may prepare humanity for the Savior's coming.
Rate This Article
Leave a Comment
More Technology News
- Mysterious object blurs the distinction between planets and stars
- Hubble discovery puts us closer than ever to finding alien life - water discovered on 5 planets
- Through the air: The sound of computer keystroke can now be used for spying purposes
- Israeli scientists discover substance that may fend off Alzheimer's, Aging and Parkinson's
- Don't cry for Comet ISON, another stupendous sky show is coming!
- FANTASTIC! Mile-long floating city would house 50,000 permanent residents
- COMET ISON BREAKS UP!
- Where you can watch the death of Comet ISON live as it happens
- Astronomers observe the biggest, and scariest event in the universe since the beginning of time
- Fr. Paul Schenck: Finding Living Faith on Catechetical Sunday
- The Movie Yellow: Incest as 'Normal' and Cassavates's Slides Into the World of Woes
- The Chicago School Teachers Strike Reveals the Need For School Choice
- The Sexual Barbarians and the Dissolution of Culture
- The Happy Priest Challenges Us to Ask: Who is Jesus to Me?
- Michael Coren on Canadian Public Schools: Teachers, leave those kids alone
- We Cannot Ignore Our Consciences: Cardinal Dolan On Religious Liberty
- In the Face of Danger, Successor of Peter Travels to Lebanon as a Messenger of Peace
- Reflections on the Dignity and Vocation of Women: Who or What?