Earth is the third planet from the Sun and the only astronomical object known to harbor life. According to radiometric dating and other sources of evidence, Earth formed over 4.5 billion years ago. Earth's gravity interacts with other objects in space the Sun and the Moon, Earth's only natural satellite. Earth revolves around the Sun in a period known as an Earth year. During this time, Earth rotates about its axis about 366.26 times. Earth's axis of rotation is tilted with respect to its orbital plane; the gravitational interaction between Earth and the Moon causes ocean tides, stabilizes Earth's orientation on its axis, slows its rotation. Earth is the largest of the four terrestrial planets. Earth's lithosphere is divided into several rigid tectonic plates that migrate across the surface over periods of many millions of years. About 71% of Earth's surface is covered with water by oceans; the remaining 29% is land consisting of continents and islands that together have many lakes and other sources of water that contribute to the hydrosphere.
The majority of Earth's polar regions are covered in ice, including the Antarctic ice sheet and the sea ice of the Arctic ice pack. Earth's interior remains active with a solid iron inner core, a liquid outer core that generates the Earth's magnetic field, a convecting mantle that drives plate tectonics. Within the first billion years of Earth's history, life appeared in the oceans and began to affect the Earth's atmosphere and surface, leading to the proliferation of aerobic and anaerobic organisms; some geological evidence indicates. Since the combination of Earth's distance from the Sun, physical properties, geological history have allowed life to evolve and thrive. In the history of the Earth, biodiversity has gone through long periods of expansion punctuated by mass extinction events. Over 99% of all species that lived on Earth are extinct. Estimates of the number of species on Earth today vary widely. Over 7.6 billion humans live on Earth and depend on its biosphere and natural resources for their survival.
Humans have developed diverse cultures. The modern English word Earth developed from a wide variety of Middle English forms, which derived from an Old English noun most spelled eorðe, it has cognates in every Germanic language, their proto-Germanic root has been reconstructed as *erþō. In its earliest appearances, eorðe was being used to translate the many senses of Latin terra and Greek γῆ: the ground, its soil, dry land, the human world, the surface of the world, the globe itself; as with Terra and Gaia, Earth was a personified goddess in Germanic paganism: the Angles were listed by Tacitus as among the devotees of Nerthus, Norse mythology included Jörð, a giantess given as the mother of Thor. Earth was written in lowercase, from early Middle English, its definite sense as "the globe" was expressed as the earth. By Early Modern English, many nouns were capitalized, the earth became the Earth when referenced along with other heavenly bodies. More the name is sometimes given as Earth, by analogy with the names of the other planets.
House styles now vary: Oxford spelling recognizes the lowercase form as the most common, with the capitalized form an acceptable variant. Another convention capitalizes "Earth" when appearing as a name but writes it in lowercase when preceded by the, it always appears in lowercase in colloquial expressions such as "what on earth are you doing?" The oldest material found in the Solar System is dated to 4.5672±0.0006 billion years ago. By 4.54±0.04 Bya the primordial Earth had formed. The bodies in the Solar System evolved with the Sun. In theory, a solar nebula partitions a volume out of a molecular cloud by gravitational collapse, which begins to spin and flatten into a circumstellar disk, the planets grow out of that disk with the Sun. A nebula contains gas, ice grains, dust. According to nebular theory, planetesimals formed by accretion, with the primordial Earth taking 10–20 million years to form. A subject of research is the formation of some 4.53 Bya. A leading hypothesis is that it was formed by accretion from material loosed from Earth after a Mars-sized object, named Theia, hit Earth.
In this view, the mass of Theia was 10 percent of Earth, it hit Earth with a glancing blow and some of its mass merged with Earth. Between 4.1 and 3.8 Bya, numerous asteroid impacts during the Late Heavy Bombardment caused significant changes to the greater surface environment of the Moon and, by inference, to that of Earth. Earth's atmosphere and oceans were formed by volcanic outgassing. Water vapor from these sources condensed into the oceans, augmented by water and ice from asteroids and comets. In this model, atmospheric "greenhouse gases" kept the oceans from freezing when the newly forming Sun had only 70% of its current luminosity. By 3.5 Bya, Earth's magnetic field was established, which helped prevent the atmosphere from being stripped away by the solar wind. A crust formed; the two models that explain land mass propose either a steady growth to the present-day forms or, more a rapid growth early in Earth history followed by a long-term steady continental area. Continents formed by plate tectonics
A near-Earth object is any small Solar System body whose orbit brings it to proximity with Earth. By convention, a Solar System body is a NEO if its closest approach to the Sun is less than 1.3 astronomical units. If a NEO's orbit crosses the Earth's and the object is larger than 140 meters across, it is considered a hazardous object. Most known PHOs and NEOs are asteroids. There are over 19,000 known near-Earth asteroids, over a hundred short-period near-Earth comets, a number of solar-orbiting spacecraft and meteoroids large enough to be tracked in space before striking the Earth, it is now accepted that collisions in the past have had a significant role in shaping the geological and biological history of the Earth. NEOs have become of increased interest since the 1980s because of greater awareness of the potential danger some of the asteroids or comets pose; when impacting the Earth, asteroids as small as 20 m cause sufficiently strong shock waves and heat to damage the local environment and populations.
Larger asteroids penetrate the atmosphere to the surface of the Earth, producing craters if they hit ground and tsunamis if water bodies are hit. It is in principle possible to deflect asteroids, methods of mitigation are being researched. Based on the orbit calculations of identified NEOs, their risk of future impact is assessed on two scales, the Torino scale and the more complex Palermo scale, both of which rate a risk of any significance with values above 0; some NEOs have had temporarily positive Torino or Palermo scale ratings after their discovery, but as of March 2018, more precise calculations based on subsequent observations led to a reduction of the rating to or below 0 in all cases. Since 1998, the United States, the European Union, other nations are scanning for NEOs in an effort called Spaceguard; the initial US Congress mandate to NASA of cataloging at least 90% of NEOs that are at least 1 kilometre in diameter, which would cause a global catastrophe in case of an impact with Earth, had been met by 2011.
In years, the survey effort has been expanded to objects as small as about 140 m across, which still have the potential for large-scale, though not global, damage. NEOs have low surface gravity, many have Earth-like orbits making them easy targets for spacecraft; as of January 2019, five near-Earth comets and five near-Earth asteroids have been visited by spacecraft. Two near-Earth asteroids are being orbited by spacecraft that will return asteroid samples back to Earth. Plans for commercial asteroid mining have been drafted by private companies; the major technical astronomical definition for Near-Earth objects are small Solar System bodies with orbits around the Sun that by definition lie between 0.983 and 1.3 astronomical units away from the Sun. Thus, NEOs are not currently near the Earth, but they can approach the Earth closely. However, the term is used more flexibly sometimes, for example for objects in orbit around the Earth or for quasi-satellites, which have a more complex orbital relationship with the Earth.
When a NEO is detected, like all other small Solar System bodies, it is submitted to the International Astronomical Union's Minor Planet Center for cataloging. MPC maintains separate lists of potential NEOs; the orbits of some NEOs intersect that of the Earth, so they pose a collision danger. These are considered hazardous objects. For the asteroids among PHOs, the hazardous asteroids, MPC maintains a separate list. NEOs are catalogued by two separate units of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration: the Center for Near Earth Object Studies and the Solar System Dynamics Group. PHAs are defined based on parameters relating to their potential to approach the Earth dangerously closely. Objects with an Earth minimum orbit intersection distance of 0.05 AU or less and an absolute magnitude of 22.0 or brighter are considered PHAs. Objects that cannot approach closer to the Earth than 0.05 AU, or are smaller than about 140 m in diameter, are not considered PHAs.
NASA's catalog of near-Earth objects includes the approach distances of asteroids and comets. The first near-Earth objects to be observed by humans were comets, their extraterrestrial nature was recognised and confirmed only after Tycho Brahe tried to measure the distance of a comet through its parallax in 1577. The 1758–1759 return of Halley's Comet was the first comet appearance predicted in advance; the first near-Earth asteroid to be discovered was 433 Eros in 1898. The asteroid was subject to several observation campaigns, because measurements of its orbit enabled a precise determination of the distance of the Earth from the Sun. In has been said. In 1937, asteroid 69230 Hermes was discovered when it passed the Earth at twice the distance of the Moon. Hermes was considered a threat. Hermes was re-discovered in 2003, is now known to be no threat for at least the next century. On June 14, 1968, the 1.4 km diameter asteroid 1566 Icarus passed Earth at a distance of 0.042482 AU (6,355,2
International Standard Serial Number
An International Standard Serial Number is an eight-digit serial number used to uniquely identify a serial publication, such as a magazine. The ISSN is helpful in distinguishing between serials with the same title. ISSN are used in ordering, interlibrary loans, other practices in connection with serial literature; the ISSN system was first drafted as an International Organization for Standardization international standard in 1971 and published as ISO 3297 in 1975. ISO subcommittee TC 46/SC 9 is responsible for maintaining the standard; when a serial with the same content is published in more than one media type, a different ISSN is assigned to each media type. For example, many serials are published both in electronic media; the ISSN system refers to these types as electronic ISSN, respectively. Conversely, as defined in ISO 3297:2007, every serial in the ISSN system is assigned a linking ISSN the same as the ISSN assigned to the serial in its first published medium, which links together all ISSNs assigned to the serial in every medium.
The format of the ISSN is an eight digit code, divided by a hyphen into two four-digit numbers. As an integer number, it can be represented by the first seven digits; the last code digit, which may be 0-9 or an X, is a check digit. Formally, the general form of the ISSN code can be expressed as follows: NNNN-NNNC where N is in the set, a digit character, C is in; the ISSN of the journal Hearing Research, for example, is 0378-5955, where the final 5 is the check digit, C=5. To calculate the check digit, the following algorithm may be used: Calculate the sum of the first seven digits of the ISSN multiplied by its position in the number, counting from the right—that is, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, respectively: 0 ⋅ 8 + 3 ⋅ 7 + 7 ⋅ 6 + 8 ⋅ 5 + 5 ⋅ 4 + 9 ⋅ 3 + 5 ⋅ 2 = 0 + 21 + 42 + 40 + 20 + 27 + 10 = 160 The modulus 11 of this sum is calculated. For calculations, an upper case X in the check digit position indicates a check digit of 10. To confirm the check digit, calculate the sum of all eight digits of the ISSN multiplied by its position in the number, counting from the right.
The modulus 11 of the sum must be 0. There is an online ISSN checker. ISSN codes are assigned by a network of ISSN National Centres located at national libraries and coordinated by the ISSN International Centre based in Paris; the International Centre is an intergovernmental organization created in 1974 through an agreement between UNESCO and the French government. The International Centre maintains a database of all ISSNs assigned worldwide, the ISDS Register otherwise known as the ISSN Register. At the end of 2016, the ISSN Register contained records for 1,943,572 items. ISSN and ISBN codes are similar in concept. An ISBN might be assigned for particular issues of a serial, in addition to the ISSN code for the serial as a whole. An ISSN, unlike the ISBN code, is an anonymous identifier associated with a serial title, containing no information as to the publisher or its location. For this reason a new ISSN is assigned to a serial each time it undergoes a major title change. Since the ISSN applies to an entire serial a new identifier, the Serial Item and Contribution Identifier, was built on top of it to allow references to specific volumes, articles, or other identifiable components.
Separate ISSNs are needed for serials in different media. Thus, the print and electronic media versions of a serial need separate ISSNs. A CD-ROM version and a web version of a serial require different ISSNs since two different media are involved. However, the same ISSN can be used for different file formats of the same online serial; this "media-oriented identification" of serials made sense in the 1970s. In the 1990s and onward, with personal computers, better screens, the Web, it makes sense to consider only content, independent of media; this "content-oriented identification" of serials was a repressed demand during a decade, but no ISSN update or initiative occurred. A natural extension for ISSN, the unique-identification of the articles in the serials, was the main demand application. An alternative serials' contents model arrived with the indecs Content Model and its application, the digital object identifier, as ISSN-independent initiative, consolidated in the 2000s. Only in 2007, ISSN-L was defined in the
A telescope is an optical instrument that makes distant objects appear magnified by using an arrangement of lenses or curved mirrors and lenses, or various devices used to observe distant objects by their emission, absorption, or reflection of electromagnetic radiation. The first known practical telescopes were refracting telescopes invented in the Netherlands at the beginning of the 17th century, by using glass lenses, they were used for both terrestrial applications and astronomy. The reflecting telescope, which uses mirrors to collect and focus light, was invented within a few decades of the first refracting telescope. In the 20th century, many new types of telescopes were invented, including radio telescopes in the 1930s and infrared telescopes in the 1960s; the word telescope now refers to a wide range of instruments capable of detecting different regions of the electromagnetic spectrum, in some cases other types of detectors. The word telescope was coined in 1611 by the Greek mathematician Giovanni Demisiani for one of Galileo Galilei's instruments presented at a banquet at the Accademia dei Lincei.
In the Starry Messenger, Galileo had used the term perspicillum. The earliest existing record of a telescope was a 1608 patent submitted to the government in the Netherlands by Middelburg spectacle maker Hans Lippershey for a refracting telescope; the actual inventor is unknown but word of it spread through Europe. Galileo heard about it and, in 1609, built his own version, made his telescopic observations of celestial objects; the idea that the objective, or light-gathering element, could be a mirror instead of a lens was being investigated soon after the invention of the refracting telescope. The potential advantages of using parabolic mirrors—reduction of spherical aberration and no chromatic aberration—led to many proposed designs and several attempts to build reflecting telescopes. In 1668, Isaac Newton built the first practical reflecting telescope, of a design which now bears his name, the Newtonian reflector; the invention of the achromatic lens in 1733 corrected color aberrations present in the simple lens and enabled the construction of shorter, more functional refracting telescopes.
Reflecting telescopes, though not limited by the color problems seen in refractors, were hampered by the use of fast tarnishing speculum metal mirrors employed during the 18th and early 19th century—a problem alleviated by the introduction of silver coated glass mirrors in 1857, aluminized mirrors in 1932. The maximum physical size limit for refracting telescopes is about 1 meter, dictating that the vast majority of large optical researching telescopes built since the turn of the 20th century have been reflectors; the largest reflecting telescopes have objectives larger than 10 m, work is underway on several 30-40m designs. The 20th century saw the development of telescopes that worked in a wide range of wavelengths from radio to gamma-rays; the first purpose built radio telescope went into operation in 1937. Since a large variety of complex astronomical instruments have been developed; the name "telescope" covers a wide range of instruments. Most detect electromagnetic radiation, but there are major differences in how astronomers must go about collecting light in different frequency bands.
Telescopes may be classified by the wavelengths of light they detect: X-ray telescopes, using shorter wavelengths than ultraviolet light Ultraviolet telescopes, using shorter wavelengths than visible light Optical telescopes, using visible light Infrared telescopes, using longer wavelengths than visible light Submillimetre telescopes, using longer wavelengths than infrared light Fresnel Imager, an optical lens technology X-ray optics, optics for certain X-ray wavelengthsAs wavelengths become longer, it becomes easier to use antenna technology to interact with electromagnetic radiation. The near-infrared can be collected much like visible light, however in the far-infrared and submillimetre range, telescopes can operate more like a radio telescope. For example, the James Clerk Maxwell Telescope observes from wavelengths from 3 μm to 2000 μm, but uses a parabolic aluminum antenna. On the other hand, the Spitzer Space Telescope, observing from about 3 μm to 180 μm uses a mirror. Using reflecting optics, the Hubble Space Telescope with Wide Field Camera 3 can observe in the frequency range from about 0.2 μm to 1.7 μm.
With photons of the shorter wavelengths, with the higher frequencies, glancing-incident optics, rather than reflecting optics are used. Telescopes such as TRACE and SOHO use special mirrors to reflect Extreme ultraviolet, producing higher resolution and brighter images than are otherwise possible. A larger aperture does not just mean that more light is collected, it enables a finer angular resolution. Telescopes may be classified by location: ground telescope, space telescope, or flying telescope, they may be classified by whether they are operated by professional astronomers or amateur astronomers. A vehicle or permanent campus containing one or more telescopes or other instruments is called an observatory. An optical telescope gathers and focuses light from the visible part of the electromagnetic spectrum. Optical telescopes increase the apparent angular size of distant objects as well as their apparent brightness. In order for the image to be observed, photographed and sent to a computer, telescopes work by employing one or
ʻOumuamua is the first and only interstellar object detected passing through the Solar System. Formally designated 1I/2017 U1, it was discovered by Robert Weryk using the Pan-STARRS telescope at Haleakala Observatory, Hawaii, on 19 October 2017, 40 days after it passed its closest point to the Sun; when it was first observed, it was about 33,000,000 km from Earth, heading away from the Sun. ʻOumuamua is a small object, estimated to be about 100 m–1,000 m × 35 m–167 m × 35 m–167 m in size. It has a dark red color, similar to objects in the outer Solar System. ʻOumuamua showed no signs of a comet coma despite its close approach to the Sun, but underwent non-gravitational acceleration. This effect is seen in many icy comets. Nonetheless, the object could be a remnant of a disintegrated interstellar comet, according to a NASA scientist; the object has a rotation rate similar to the average spin rate seen in Solar System asteroids, but is more elongated than all but a few other natural bodies. While a strengthless object would require it to be of a density similar to rocky asteroids, a small amount of internal strength similar to icy comets would allow a low density.
ʻOumuamua is tumbling, rather than smoothly rotating, is moving so fast relative to the Sun that there is no chance it originated in the Solar System. It means that ʻOumuamua cannot be captured into a solar orbit, so it will leave the Solar System and resume traveling through interstellar space, it will take the object 20,000 years to travel the Solar System before exiting. ʻOumuamua's planetary system of origin and the amount of time it has spent traveling amongst the stars are unknown. As the first known object of its type, ʻOumuamua presented a unique case for the International Astronomical Union, which assigns designations for astronomical objects. Classified as comet C/2017 U1, it was reclassified as asteroid A/2017 U1, due to the absence of a coma. Once it was unambiguously identified as coming from outside the Solar System, a new designation was created: I, for Interstellar object. ʻOumuamua, as the first object so identified, was designated 1I, with rules on the eligibility of objects for I-numbers, the names to be assigned to these interstellar objects, yet to be codified.
The object may be referred to as 1I. The name comes from Hawaiian ʻoumuamua, meaning'scout', reflects the way this object is like a scout or messenger sent from the distant past to reach out to humanity, it translates to "first distant messenger". The first character is a Hawaiian ʻokina, not an apostrophe, is pronounced as a glottal stop. Before the official name was decided upon, the name Rama was suggested, the name given to an alien spacecraft discovered under similar circumstances in the 1973 science fiction novel Rendezvous with Rama by Arthur C. Clarke. Observations and conclusions concerning the trajectory of ʻOumuamua were obtained with data from the Pan-STARRS1 Telescope, part of the Spaceguard Survey, the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope, its composition and shape from the Very Large Telescope and the Gemini South telescope in Chile, as well as the Keck II telescope in Hawaii; these were collected by Karen J. Meech, Robert Weryk and their colleagues and published in Nature on 20 November 2017.
Post announcement, the space-based telescopes Hubble and Spitzer joined in the observations. ʻOumuamua is dark. It was not seen in STEREO HI-1A observations near its perihelion on 9 September 2017, limiting its brightness to ~13.5 mag. By the end of October, ʻOumuamua had faded to apparent magnitude ~23, in mid-December 2017, it was too faint and fast moving to be studied by the largest ground-based telescopes.ʻOumuamua was compared to the fictional alien spacecraft Rama because of its interstellar origin. Adding to the coincidence, both the real and the fictional objects are unusually elongated. ʻOumuamua has unsteady brightness, which are typical of asteroids. The SETI Institute's radio telescope, the Allen Telescope Array, examined ʻOumuamua, but detected no unusual radio emissions. More detailed observations, using the Breakthrough Listen hardware and the Green Bank Telescope, were performed. Given the close proximity to this interstellar object, limits were placed to putative transmitters with the low power of 0.08 watts.
ʻOumuamua appears to have come from the direction of Vega in the constellation Lyra. The incoming direction of motion of ʻOumuamua is 6° from the solar apex, the most direction for approaches from objects outside the Solar System. On 26 October, two precovery observations from the Catalina Sky Survey were found dated 14 and 17 October. A two-week observation arc had verified a hyperbolic trajectory, it has a hyperbolic excess velocity of 26.33 km/s, its speed relative to the Sun when in interstellar space. By mid-November, astronomers were certain. Based on observations spanning 34 days, ʻOumuamua's orbital eccentricity is 1.20, the highest ever
Nature is a British multidisciplinary scientific journal, first published on 4 November 1869. It is one of the most recognizable scientific journals in the world, was ranked the world's most cited scientific journal by the Science Edition of the 2010 Journal Citation Reports and is ascribed an impact factor of 40.137, making it one of the world's top academic journals. It is one of the few remaining academic journals that publishes original research across a wide range of scientific fields. Research scientists are the primary audience for the journal, but summaries and accompanying articles are intended to make many of the most important papers understandable to scientists in other fields and the educated public. Towards the front of each issue are editorials and feature articles on issues of general interest to scientists, including current affairs, science funding, scientific ethics and research breakthroughs. There are sections on books and short science fiction stories; the remainder of the journal consists of research papers, which are dense and technical.
Because of strict limits on the length of papers the printed text is a summary of the work in question with many details relegated to accompanying supplementary material on the journal's website. There are many fields of research in which important new advances and original research are published as either articles or letters in Nature; the papers that have been published in this journal are internationally acclaimed for maintaining high research standards. Fewer than 8% of submitted papers are accepted for publication. In 2007 Nature received the Prince of Asturias Award for Humanity; the enormous progress in science and mathematics during the 19th century was recorded in journals written in German or French, as well as in English. Britain underwent enormous technological and industrial changes and advances in the latter half of the 19th century. In English the most respected scientific journals of this time were the refereed journals of the Royal Society, which had published many of the great works from Isaac Newton, Michael Faraday through to early works from Charles Darwin.
In addition, during this period, the number of popular science periodicals doubled from the 1850s to the 1860s. According to the editors of these popular science magazines, the publications were designed to serve as "organs of science", in essence, a means of connecting the public to the scientific world. Nature, first created in 1869, was not the first magazine of its kind in Britain. One journal to precede Nature was Recreative Science: A Record and Remembrancer of Intellectual Observation, created in 1859, began as a natural history magazine and progressed to include more physical observational science and technical subjects and less natural history; the journal's name changed from its original title to Intellectual Observer: A Review of Natural History, Microscopic Research, Recreative Science and later to the Student and Intellectual Observer of Science and Art. While Recreative Science had attempted to include more physical sciences such as astronomy and archaeology, the Intellectual Observer broadened itself further to include literature and art as well.
Similar to Recreative Science was the scientific journal Popular Science Review, created in 1862, which covered different fields of science by creating subsections titled "Scientific Summary" or "Quarterly Retrospect", with book reviews and commentary on the latest scientific works and publications. Two other journals produced in England prior to the development of Nature were the Quarterly Journal of Science and Scientific Opinion, established in 1864 and 1868, respectively; the journal most related to Nature in its editorship and format was The Reader, created in 1864. These similar journals all failed; the Popular Science Review survived longest, lasting 20 years and ending its publication in 1881. The Quarterly Journal, after undergoing a number of editorial changes, ceased publication in 1885; the Reader terminated in 1867, Scientific Opinion lasted a mere 2 years, until June 1870. Not long after the conclusion of The Reader, a former editor, Norman Lockyer, decided to create a new scientific journal titled Nature, taking its name from a line by William Wordsworth: "To the solid ground of nature trusts the Mind that builds for aye".
First owned and published by Alexander Macmillan, Nature was similar to its predecessors in its attempt to "provide cultivated readers with an accessible forum for reading about advances in scientific knowledge." Janet Browne has proposed that "far more than any other science journal of the period, Nature was conceived and raised to serve polemic purpose." Many of the early editions of Nature consisted of articles written by members of a group that called itself the X Club, a group of scientists known for having liberal and somewhat controversial scientific beliefs relative to the time period. Initiated by Thomas Henry Huxley, the group consisted of such important scientists as Joseph Dalton Hooker, Herbert Spencer, John Tyndall, along with another five scientists and mathematicians, it was in part its scientific liberality that made Nature a longer-lasti
The Tunguska event was a large explosion that occurred near the Stony Tunguska River in Yeniseysk Governorate, Russia, on the morning of 30 June 1908. The explosion over the sparsely populated Eastern Siberian Taiga flattened 2,000 square kilometres of forest, yet caused no known human casualties; the explosion is attributed to the air burst of a meteor. It is classified as an impact event though no impact crater has been found; the Tunguska event is the largest impact event on Earth in recorded history. Studies have yielded different estimates of the meteoroid's size, on the order of 60 to 190 metres, depending on whether the body was a comet or a denser asteroid. Since the 1908 event, there have been an estimated 1,000 scholarly papers published on the Tunguska explosion. In 2013, a team of researchers published analysis results of micro-samples from a peat bog near the center of the affected area showing fragments that may be of meteoritic origin. Early estimates of the energy of the air burst range from 10–15 megatons of TNT to 30 megatons of TNT, depending on the exact height of burst estimated when the scaling-laws from the effects of nuclear weapons are employed.
However, modern supercomputer calculations that include the effect of the object's momentum find that more of the energy was focused downward than would be the case from a nuclear explosion and estimate that the airburst had an energy range from 3 to 5 megatons of TNT. The 15-megaton estimate represents an energy about 1,000 times greater than that of the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima, Japan—roughly equal to that of the United States' Castle Bravo ground-based thermonuclear detonation on 1 March 1954, about one-third that of the Soviet Union's Tsar Bomba explosion on 30 October 1961, it is estimated that the Tunguska explosion knocked down some 80 million trees over an area of 2,150 km2, that the shock wave from the blast would have measured 5.0 on the Richter magnitude scale. An explosion of this magnitude would be capable of destroying a large metropolitan area, due to the remoteness of the location, no human fatalities were documented. Several reports have indicated that two people may have died in the event, but those deaths remain unofficial.
The Tunguska event has helped to spark discussion of asteroid impact avoidance. On 30 June 1908, at around 07:17 local time, Evenki natives and Russian settlers in the hills north-west of Lake Baikal observed a column of bluish light, nearly as bright as the Sun, moving across the sky. About ten minutes there was a flash and a sound similar to artillery fire. Eyewitnesses closer to the explosion reported that the source of the sound moved from the east to the north of them; the sounds were accompanied by a shock wave that knocked people off their feet and broke windows hundreds of kilometres away. The majority of witnesses reported only the sounds and tremors, did not report seeing the explosion. Eyewitness accounts vary regarding the duration of the events; the explosion registered at seismic stations across Eurasia, air waves from the blast were detected in Germany, Croatia, the UK, as far away as Jakarta and Washington, D. C, it is estimated that, in some places, the resulting shock wave was equivalent to an earthquake measuring 5.0 on the Richter magnitude scale.
Over the next few days night skies in Asia and Europe were aglow, with contemporaneous reports of photographs being taken at midnight in both Sweden and Scotland. It has been theorized that this effect was due to light passing through high-altitude ice particles that had formed at low temperatures—a phenomenon that many years would be produced by space shuttles. In the United States, a Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory program at the Mount Wilson Observatory observed a months-long decrease in atmospheric transparency consistent with an increase in suspended dust particles. Testimony of S. Semenov, as recorded by Leonid Kulik's expedition in 1930: At breakfast time I was sitting by the house at Vanavara Trading Post, facing north. I saw that directly to the north, over Onkoul's Tunguska Road, the sky split in two and fire appeared high and wide over the forest; the split in the sky grew larger, the entire northern side was covered with fire. At that moment I became so hot. I wanted to tear off my shirt and throw it down, but the sky shut closed, a strong thump sounded, I was thrown a few meters.
I lost my senses for a moment, but my wife ran out and led me to the house. After that such noise came, as if rocks were falling or cannons were firing, the Earth shook, when I was on the ground, I pressed my head down, fearing rocks would smash it; when the sky opened up, hot wind raced between the houses, like from cannons, which left traces in the ground like pathways, it damaged some crops. We saw that many windows were shattered, in the barn, a part of the iron lock snapped. Testimony of Chuchan of Shanyagir tribe, as recorded by I. M. Suslov in 1926: We had a hut by the river with my brother Chekaren. We were sleeping. We both woke up at the same time. Somebody shoved us. We felt strong wind. Chekaren said,'Can you hear all those birds flying overhead?' We were