Meteors




Given the history of planetary destruction from meteor strikes in the past, trying to stop them from impacting our now vastly more populated planet seems like a good idea, but one wonders…










Hopefully it won’t be cloudy! If you don’t live in a totally light-saturated neighborhood (or the southern hemisphere) look at the skies tonight for a fantastic light show — the Perseids. You should be able to see as much as a meteor per minute, caused by the debris from multiple orbits around the sun of the comet Swift-Tuttle. The video below is illustrative, but believe me, it will look a whole lot better with the naked eye.


A bright meteor in the night sky provided many people in Eastern Iowa with a rare treat late Wednesday night. A Howard County Sheriff Department dash cam caught the meteor’s fall. (April 15, 2010)



Definitely adding to the ideas for an exogenesis-related explanation for life on Earth. (I won’t go so far to embrace panspermia, although the co-discover of DNA, Francis Crick, did later in life.)

Interesting nonetheless. Doreen Walton writes on BBC News:

Scientists say they have confirmed that a meteorite that crashed into earth 40 years ago contains millions of different organic compounds. It is thought the Murchison meteorite could be even older than the Sun.”Having this information means you can tell what was happening during the birth of the Solar System,” said lead researcher Dr Philippe Schmitt-Kopplin. The results of the meteorite study are published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

“We are really excited. When I first studied it and saw the complexity I was so amazed,” said Dr Schmitt-Kopplin, who works at the Institute for Ecological Chemistry in Neuherberg, Germany. Meteorites are like some kind of fossil. When you try to understand them you are looking back in time,” he explained.

The researchers says the identification of many different chemicals shows the primordial Solar System probably had a higher molecular diversity than Earth.


On News.com.au:

A METEOR has crashed in a blaze of colour in South Africa, but experts are unable to find where the out-of-space visitor landed. The rare astronomical phenomenon was captured by a local traffic camera and witnessed by locals, British tabloid the Sun reports.

The footage initially shows cars on a busy road, near the city of Johannesburg, when the meteor suddenly streaks across the night sky. The meteor appears as a brilliant green light before it explodes on the horizon, transforming into an orange ball of flame.

One witness told the Sun: “We saw this big green ball of fire. It kind of came out of the sky, out of the blue. “There was a sudden flash, like an orange stripe in the sky, followed by a very bright explosion where the sky lit up as if it was daytime.”