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Did a meteorite fall in the Glubokoe District?

News spreads of a meteorite falling near the town of Glubokoe in the Vitebsk Region
By Daria Svetlovskaya

The Internet is full of eyewitness accounts of ‘a strong rumble’, a ‘bright light’ and ‘shaking windows’: almost a rehearsal of the apocalypse, promised by the Mayan calendar in December...

Igor Sasimovich, who teaches physics and astronomy at a school in Glubokoe, is rather sceptical about the phenomenon, which was observed by many local residents on the night of 15-16th July. He is familiar with the idea of meteorites and considers that our case is similar to that recorded on video by various witnesses in the US states of California and Nevada as recently as April 24th this year, showing a meteorite (thought to have been the size of a washing machine) fall to Earth. There are many assumptions about a domestic meteorite but it would have to be found in order for us to understand what we are dealing with; it caused a great deal of noise and then disappeared.

“It’s difficult to understand because of contradictory data regarding where the meteorite fell,” Mr. Sasimovich notes. “The last assumption is that it landed between Miory, Polotsk and Glubokoe, which form a triangle. I think we should look near Lake Sho — a wooded, marshy area. I may be able to gather volunteers to search the land and to question witnesses in detail. If the meteorite burnt up in the atmosphere, we won’t be looking for a deep crater in the earth; it’s more likely that fragments are scattered over great distances. The blast wave may have left some clear signs.”

If the meteorite did land in one piece, Polotsk Air Department of Bellesavia could help in finding where it fell; they are already airborne and have promised to report any findings.

Vsevolod Bardun, a senior research fellow of the Geological Museum, tells us, “We have a 21kg fragment of the Bragin Iron Meteorite Shower (from 400-500 years ago), which was found in October last year; we’re currently testing it under laboratory conditions.” Meanwhile, Alexander Krasovsky, an associate professor of Earth Science and Hydrometeorology Chair at the Belarusian State University, notes that a meteorite shower is certainly expected in August.

Scientists believe that, long ago, a planet exploded, sending fragments into space as an asteroid belt. This will come closer to the Earth by the end of summer, with the chance of some pieces entering our planet’s atmosphere. Whether a large meteor or tiny stones fall from the sky, only Heaven knows...
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