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Satellite photos give a striking look at the second most powerful meteor explosion of the 21st century.
On Dec. 18, 2018, an incoming space rock detonated 16 miles (26 kilometers) above the Bering Sea's icy waters, generating 173 kilotons of energy. That's about 10 times more than the amount unleashed by the atomic bomb the United States dropped on the Japanese city of Hiroshima during World War II, NASA officials said.
Chelyabinsk - Event - Nobody - Ground - Bering
Unlike the Chelyabinsk event, nobody on the ground saw or recorded the Bering Sea meteor, as far as we know. That's a consequence of the remote location; the Bering Sea lies between far eastern Russian and Alaska. But some sharp eyes in the sky did preserve the blast for posterity.
NASA's Earth-observing Terra satellite, for example, spotted the meteor with two different instruments — the Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR) and the Moderate Resolution Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MODIS). MISR team members combined some of their imagery into an animated GIF, which NASA released Friday (March 22).
Image - Sequence - Views - Multi-angle - Imaging
This image sequence shows views from the Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer instrument on NASA’s Terra satellite, taken a few minutes after a fireball exploded over the Bering Sea on Dec. 18, 2018.
Japan's Himawari satellite also observed the blast. You can...
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