As a result of the incident, no one was injured, as the fragments of the asteroid fell into the sea.
On February 13, 2023 at 3 am GMT (5 am Kyiv time) a bright “ball of fire” lit up the sky over the English Channel, which separates the UK and France. A small asteroid entered the atmosphere, exploded in the air, and then its fragments fell into the water. This event was observed not only by astronomers, but also by ordinary residents of several European countries, who made unique shots, writes the Daily Mail.
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A small asteroid, only about 1 meter in diameter, entered Earth’s atmosphere on the night of Monday 13 February. This bright “fireball” flew at great speed and left behind an equally bright trail. After a short stay in the Earth’s atmosphere, it exploded in the air and disintegrated into small pieces that fell into the waters of the English Channel.
The fall of the asteroid at that time was observed by residents of Great Britain, France, Belgium and the Netherlands. The falling astroid was best seen from southern England and northern France.
The asteroid, which received the official name 2023 CX1 (although it also has an alternative name Sar 2667), was discovered by the Hungarian astronomer Christian Sarnecki 7 hours before falling to Earth. The scientist took the first photograph of a near-Earth asteroid that flew towards Earth on the evening of Sunday, February 12, when the object was at a distance of 233,000 km from our planet.
The asteroid headed for the northern coast of France, but, like other similar small objects, burned up in the atmosphere and eventually disintegrated into small pieces as a result of the explosion.
As a result of the incident, no one was injured, since, according to scientists, all the remaining pieces fell into the English Channel. In any case, this astroid was not considered potentially dangerous due to its tiny size.
Although if an asteroid or its fragments fell in a densely populated part of France, then it could potentially cause damage to buildings or seriously injure someone.
According to scientists from the European Space Agency, this was only the seventh time in history when it was possible to accurately predict the fall of an asteroid to Earth. Scientists believe that observing and predicting the fall of such non-hazardous asteroids is a very good practice, because it can help in predicting the possible fall of a really large space rock.
Scientists believe that so far there is no way to protect against such a catastrophe. So far, one way could be to deviate asteroids from their flight path, as the DART spacecraft did last September. But this event occurred at a distance of millions of kilometers from the Earth, and scientists are not yet sure whether such a device can change the asteroid’s flight path if it is very close to the planet.
Now scientists believe that asteroids with a diameter greater than 100-140 meters are a potential danger to the Earth. If such a rock were to fall from the sky, the impact would release the equivalent of 1,000 atomic bombs dropped on Hiroshima in 1945.
And if an asteroid with a diameter of 1 km or more falls on Earth, then this catastrophe can lead to the disappearance of our civilization. By the way, in early March of this year, a similar asteroid, called 2001 CB21, should fly past the Earth at close range. If something changes its trajectory, then it will be the last event that people will know about.
Focus has already written that scientists have told whether it is possible to destroy an asteroid flying to Earth with the help of nuclear weapons .
Focus also wrote that at the end of January, a not very large asteroid flew up to the Earth at a dangerously close distance.