Lv 7
? asked in Science & MathematicsAstronomy & Space · 2 months ago

Does anyone have any knowledge/memory of this astronomical event in, I think, 1972?

I'm sure I read somewhere that a huge fireball was seen over Canada, caused by a meteor and it came close to earth, but luckily due to its angle, it bounced off the upper atmosphere back into space. Scientists/astronomers estimate if it had hit the land it would have caused a deadly, devastating 20 kiloton explosion.

Cannot remember where I saw about this, but the memory is not right back to 1972, but I just recall reading about it much more recently on a website.


oldprof A 20 KT explosion would, if it was over a wooded area, would cause uncontrollable fires over such a wide area that the recent conflagrations in Australia and California would appear small in comparison

5 Answers

  • ?
    Lv 7
    2 months ago
    Favorite Answer

    No, but there was a daylight Goldie and fireball on August 10 1972 over the northern United States and Canada. A quick Google search on on "1972 bolide Canada" turns up this Wikipedia article:  


    I probably was too far south to see it

    You owe meca$ 500 consulting fee for my time in doing your research for you. 

  • 2 months ago

    I can't seem to find any such event. The Russian meteorite was noteworthy and it, only the size of a school bus.

    You talking about the daylight goldie, I doubt it much bigger.

  • 2 months ago

    You are probably referring to this event:


    Nothing actually bounces off the atmosphere. What happens is that their trajectory causes them to pass through the atmosphere, and they have enough kinetic energy to emerge from the other side then continue to orbit the sun, but in a modified orbit. Under the right circumstances, such an object may end up in temporary Earth orbit, as has apparently happened a few times in the past. Look up "meteor procession" for possible examples.

  • 2 months ago

    Well... two things... first, there was the fireball over the Grand Tetons - here's a video:


    Youtube thumbnail

    Then, there was one case where a meteor bounced off the atmosphere, had slowed enough to orbit the Earth, then re-entered about 90 minutes later... I don't recall *where* that was, but I'm guessing that was about... 1980? 1985? 

  • How do you think about the answers? You can sign in to vote the answer.
  • 2 months ago

    20 KT sounds like a lot, but on the grand scheme of things it really isn't.  If it slammed into a metropolis, it would wipe out everything there.  But if it slammed into the ocean, we'd hardly notice it.

    But the behemoth that killed off all the dinosaurs 65 million years ago had a yield of 100 million megatons. [See source.]  That's 5,000,000,000 times more energy than that 1972 impact would have brought.  If we had another of those behemoths, even if it smashed into the ocean (like it did last time) it would likely reduce mankind's population to a small number...and maybe to zero.

    Source(s): Yucatan Crater Linked To Mass Extinctions Of Dinosaurs ...www.sciencedaily.com › releases › 2000/12
Still have questions? Get your answers by asking now.