she looks so happy with her brand new space junk

Space rock hits house: "I was in the kitchen doing breakfast and there was this almighty explosion," said Brenda Archer. "It was like a bomb had gone off. I couldn't see anything, there was just dust. I thought something had exploded in the ceiling. Phil saw a stone under the computer and it was hot to touch."

The rock hit her leather couch and bounced back up to the ceiling before rolling under the computer. Experts have told the Archers to keep the rock in the oven at 100C to dry it out.


20 Responses:

  1. down8 says:

    Dry it out?


  2. tfofurn says:

    It it's going to be spending time in her oven, she should donate it to the Burnt Food Museum. It'll fit right in.

  3. I so would not part with a meteorite that hit my house and failed to kill me. Well okay maybe for a few hundred thou. But still, let the scientists get their own damn meteorite.

    • partylemon says:

      Few hundred? Maybe you missed a paragraph -

      "Meteorite Magazine editor and Auckland University maths lecturer Dr Joel Schiff said the rock could be worth more than $10,000 - coming through the roof added significantly to its value."

      I'm sure you can't stop laughing either.

  4. safran says:

    Wow~! That is very cool, and you all are very fortunate. What a stunning event. For those of us ever so curious I hope you post weight and measure, thought it looks like a small breadbox size. Thank you for sharing!~

  5. safran says:

    Oh DAH me~ I was so excited I thought that was your photo when I posted.! Thanks for that link.

  6. jabberwokky says:

    Uhhh... I thought they were freezing when they landed. Also, they tend to be pitted. And "dry it out"?

    • lars_larsen says:

      Freezing? The pressures involved in re-entry are incredible. It heats the air around the rock to thousands of degrees. Most of the rock literally burned off before it impacted the house.

      Remember the space shuttle? It melted.

      • jabberwokky says:

        I am well aware of the heat involved on reentry, but ablation (something that does not occur to an object like the space shuttle which is expected to touch down gently compared to a freefall descent) removes the heat almost as fast as it is generated. Since the majority of the remaining mass is at pretty low temperature (having floated in a rather cold environment and given plenty of time to radiate any energy), it chills the small fraction of mass that didn't slough off right before impact. Thus, very low temperature.

        You can create point temperatures in your household microwave of thousands of degrees. Toss in a chicken that is frozen solid, give it a couple minutes, and it comes out... frozen. It's not how hot it gets, it's how much heat there is versus the temperature of the majority of the mass. Add in ablation, which tosses away the heated portion, and you have an effective (although weighty) heat shield.

        Honestly, I don't know that much about meteors. It is not an area of astronomy that has interested me, so my information may well be wrong. I have a couple meteorites given as gifts; they are sitting on my desk at a nice, comfy 22 degrees. But they fell quite a long time ago and mass a fraction of a kilogram.

        • (having floated in a rather cold environment and given plenty of time to radiate any energy),

          I think you mean "having floated in direct sunlight for an arbitrary length of time and having nowhere to conduct heat away to."

          (That said, I don't actually know what the balance point between the heating-from-sun rate and the radiating-away rate is for a typical space rock of given size.)

          • jabberwokky says:

            It varies quite a bit. Less on the position in the solar system and more on the albedo and surface area of the object. I looked around for a temperature that sounded right for this object, but I couldn't find one. I know off the top of my head that interstellar objects tend to be about two degrees kelvin, and it is warmer within the solar system. How much for an average apollo asteroid, I'm not sure. Far greater, yes, but still brutally cold compared to New Zealand.

        • lars_larsen says:

          So you're saying half the rock melted away, and it was that very process that cooled it?

          Hmmm I dont get it. But that is interesting. I'll have to look that up.

          • jayrtfm says:

            there's a classic kids science experiment where you boil water in a paper cup. the 212 degree water prevents the cup from reaching Fahrenheit 451

            • lars_larsen says:

              Yeah I've done that. But the cup goes from room temp to 100C. Thats not cooling, thats heating.

              Now if the water in the cup boiled and the cup itself formed ice crystals. THAT would be cool.

    • pdx6 says:

      Meteors are only freezing when they arrive to this time from the future.

  7. themaskedman says:

    For some reason this reminds me of Joe Dirt's "meteorite"...

  8. rearkick says:

    I don't think I'd be smiling if I had to fix my roof, my leather couch and possibly my computer.