transaeroyyz
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Meteorite Threat To Airliners

Sat Feb 16, 2013 2:32 am

Today's meteorite strike in Siberia produced a series of massive sonic booms, besides the meteorite itself posing a threat what is the likelihood of a boom knocking a plane out. Luckily none were affected today as that is a big corridor for flights. Thoughts?
 
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EA CO AS
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RE: Meteorite Threat To Airliners

Sat Feb 16, 2013 2:37 am

I think it's practically not worth worrying about, as birds are infinitely more dangerous to aircraft than meteorite-driven sonic booms.
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MrBuzzcut
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RE: Meteorite Threat To Airliners

Sat Feb 16, 2013 2:40 am

A sonic boom isn't going to affect aircraft in the vicinity, at least to my admittedly limited knowledge, and it is my firm opinion that if your aircraft is hit by a meteorite, well, it was just your time, because the odds are just inconceivable. If you survive it, start buying lotto tickets.
 
trav110
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RE: Meteorite Threat To Airliners

Sat Feb 16, 2013 3:02 am

While yesterday's "impact" might not pose much of a risk, I wonder what would be the case if a meteorite the size of the one involved in the Tunguska event were to hit the atmosphere.

For those unfamiliar, the Tunguska event was a meteoroid that exploded upon hitting the atmosphere in 1908 over northern Siberia. The resulting airburst flattened 830 sq. mi of forest, and is estimated to be 1,000 times more powerful than the bomb dropped on Hiroshima.
 
Newark727
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RE: Meteorite Threat To Airliners

Sat Feb 16, 2013 3:10 am

Quoting MrBuzzcut (Reply 2):
A sonic boom isn't going to affect aircraft in the vicinity, at least to my admittedly limited knowledge, and it is my firm opinion that if your aircraft is hit by a meteorite, well, it was just your time, because the odds are just inconceivable

Yeah, that. It's just too unlikely to plan for, seems to me.
 
kalvado
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RE: Meteorite Threat To Airliners

Sat Feb 16, 2013 3:29 am

Quoting trav110 (Reply 3):
While yesterday's "impact" might not pose much of a risk, I wonder what would be the case if a meteorite the size of the one involved in the Tunguska event were to hit the atmosphere.

Estimates for Tunguska are 5 to 35 Mtons of TNT equivalent. You may compare that with tsar bomb ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tsar_Bomba ) 50 Mtons, and Tu-95 bomber barely survived the event being 28 miles away from the epicenter.
I would expect airliner has a decent chance of surviving Tunguska event being more than 50 miles from the point of impact.
 
UA772IAD
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RE: Meteorite Threat To Airliners

Sat Feb 16, 2013 5:06 am

Asteroid - the rock while it's still outside of the atmosphere
Meteor - the rock once it has entered the Earth's atmosphere
Meteorite - the fragments of rock remaining from the meteor's collision.

Didn't know the difference myself until I heard it on the radio today...
 
threepoint
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RE: Meteorite Threat To Airliners

Sat Feb 16, 2013 5:50 am

Quoting UA772IAD (Reply 6):
Meteorite - the fragments of rock remaining from the meteor's collision.

What are the fragments of the plane called that remain from a midair collision with a meteor(ite)?
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JBo
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RE: Meteorite Threat To Airliners

Sat Feb 16, 2013 5:59 am

Quoting threepoint (Reply 7):

F.O.D.?
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zkojq
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RE: Meteorite Threat To Airliners

Sat Feb 16, 2013 11:19 am

There was an incident a couple of years back when a LAN Chile Airbus A340 flying from Auckland to Santiago was 'nearly' hit by either a Russian satellite reentering the atmosphere or a meteor. So clearly there is some risk, even though it must be miniscule.
http://avherald.com/h?article=3f1c5718&opt=0

Quoting UA772IAD (Reply 6):
Asteroid - the rock while it's still outside of the atmosphere
Meteor - the rock once it has entered the Earth's atmosphere
Meteorite - the fragments of rock remaining from the meteor's collision.

Didn't know the difference myself until I heard it on the radio today...

Handy.  
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garpd
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RE: Meteorite Threat To Airliners

Sat Feb 16, 2013 11:41 am

Quoting threepoint (Reply 7):
What are the fragments of the plane called that remain from a midair collision with a meteor(ite)?

Over Russia? Spare parts
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skywaymanaz
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RE: Meteorite Threat To Airliners

Sat Feb 16, 2013 12:06 pm

When TWA 800 went down this was one of the theories I read that was being considered somewhat seriously at one point. I think they thought it was a once in 100 year event that could happen with an airplane and small meteor fragment colliding.
 
Geo772
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RE: Meteorite Threat To Airliners

Sat Feb 16, 2013 1:22 pm

Quoting trav110 (Reply 3):

While yesterday's "impact" might not pose much of a risk, I wonder what would be the case if a meteorite the size of the one involved in the Tunguska event were to hit the atmosphere.

For those unfamiliar, the Tunguska event was a meteoroid that exploded upon hitting the atmosphere in 1908 over northern Siberia. The resulting airburst flattened 830 sq. mi of forest, and is estimated to be 1,000 times more powerful than the bomb dropped on Hiroshima.

This was mentioned last night on the BBC. The Tunguska event was described as a 1000 year event, so we're unlikely to witness something like that in our lifetimes. If an airliner was in close proximity to that there would be little chance for it. Of much greater worry for an event like that is it hits the sea causing a Tsunami or even a direct hit onto an urban area. Both of which are likely to be pretty bad.
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maxpower1954
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RE: Meteorite Threat To Airliners

Sat Feb 16, 2013 3:14 pm

One of the theories offered after Comet Yoke Peter exploded over the Mediterranean in January 1954 was a meteor. The second Comet midair breakup eliminated that one.

[Edited 2013-02-16 07:17:17]
 
phlwok
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RE: Meteorite Threat To Airliners

Sat Feb 16, 2013 4:56 pm

This is one of those things that even if you want to plan for a defense against it, the engineering challenge to do so is practically impossible. These rocks enter into the atmosphere at better than 30,000 mph - how would we engineer a defense against that for an aircraft? Even if one were coming right at the plane and the crew saw it, would they have any time to get out of the way? Yes, one may eventually be downed by one, but there are just so many other challenges in the world that could benefit from attention ahead of this and be a more worthwhile use of limited resources.
 
threepoint
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RE: Meteorite Threat To Airliners

Sat Feb 16, 2013 7:17 pm

Quoting PHLwok (Reply 14):
Yes, one may eventually be downed by one, but there are just so many other challenges in the world that could benefit from attention ahead of this and be a more worthwhile use of limited resources.

Are we still talking about meteorites or this a general comment on the state of the US-led paranoia against airborne terrorist threats?
'Cause it applies in either case.
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nycdave
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RE: Meteorite Threat To Airliners

Sat Feb 16, 2013 9:26 pm

Quoting MrBuzzcut (Reply 2):
If you survive it, start buying lotto tickets.

Actually, you'd never want to buy a lottery ticket -- the odds of having TWO infinitesimally likely events happening to you in ONE lifetime? Well, that's (freakishly lucky)*(unbelievably lucky)!
 
soon7x7
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RE: Meteorite Threat To Airliners

Sat Feb 16, 2013 10:11 pm

Quoting skywaymanaz (Reply 11):
When TWA 800 went down this was one of the theories I read that was being considered somewhat seriously at one point. I think they thought it was a once in 100 year event that could happen with an airplane and small meteor fragment colliding.

It indeed did and continued on to hit Charles Schumer in the head. He hasn't been the same since..
 
LLA001
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RE: Meteorite Threat To Airliners

Sun Feb 17, 2013 9:16 pm

I was hoping to see an air-to-air shot of the meteorite, I guess there were not many airliners flying nearby the event.
 
XT6Wagon
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RE: Meteorite Threat To Airliners

Sun Feb 17, 2013 9:54 pm

I think there are better places to worry than the threat of Meteorites. There have been exactly 0 losses do to meteors. I'm willing to bet feral dogs are a bigger threat to aviation than meteorites.
 
Gr8Circle
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RE: Meteorite Threat To Airliners

Sun Feb 17, 2013 11:34 pm

Quoting LLA001 (Reply 18):
I was hoping to see an air-to-air shot of the meteorite, I guess there were not many airliners flying nearby the event.

Yeah, I was wondering about that too.....considering that it must have been visible for hundreds of miles around, I'm sure some aircraft pilots must have spotted it......getting it on camera would be that much less likely as they wouldn't have that much time to pull out a camera or phone and shoot it......
 
brilondon
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RE: Meteorite Threat To Airliners

Mon Feb 18, 2013 12:09 am

Quoting threepoint (Reply 7):
What are the fragments of the plane called that remain from a midair collision with a meteor(ite)?

Garbage.
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