Almost no one noticed, but a massive meteor exploded over Earth on Dec. 18 last year off the coast of Russia over the Bering Sea.
It was the second-largest known meteor explosion in the past 30 years, with an impact energy of 173 kilotons, 10 times the energy released by the Hiroshima atomic bomb, said NASA. The space rock measured 30ft wide. The fireball measuring 18 meters across, screamed into Earth's atmosphere at 41,600 mph. Military satellites picked it up and reported it to NASA. Peter Brown at the University of Western Ontario, Canada, made the discovery and posted his findings on Twitter. The fireball was actually spotted as it exploded by satellite managed by the Japan Meteorological Agency.
„It was over the Bering Sea so it didn't have the same type of effect or show up in the news," said Kelly Fast, near-Earth objects observations programme manager at Nasa.The most recent bigger impact of a meteor was above Chelyabinsk, Russia, in 2013, with an impact energy of 440 kilotons. Meteor explosions are common but large events are rare. Kelly Fast, near-Earth objects observations programme manager at NASA, discussed the event at the 50th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference in The Woodlands, near Houston, Texas.