Saturday, September 15, 2012

Numbers and nuggets

 
Prompted by Neil Armstrong's death and Frank Culbertson's story (links below), in addition to receiving a meteorite from my sister for my birthday on Monday, I offer a space-themed post today:

30,000 years old
A large and ancient meteorite (1st image) is on display at the Salisbury and South Wiltshire Museum
 in Wiltshire, U.K. until September 22nd. The 90kg (200lb) space rock fell on a glacier some 30,000 years ago and was apparently preserved by the frozen conditions during the last ice age. Thousands of years later, the Neolithic people who built Stonehenge found and incorporated it into a burial mound, in which the local chalk content continued to preserve it. The heavy stone was unearthed in the 19th c. by British archaeologist Edward Duke, whose family had owned the land and lived in the residence, Lake House, 11 generations. Despite having his own private museum, Duke apparently placed it on the doorstep, where it remained when the house was owned by brewer Joseph Lovibond (Mayor of Salisbury in 1878-79 and 1890-91) and the Bailey family (who lived in it from 1928 to 1991). When the Baileys put the property on the market, they brought the meteorite to the Natural History Museum, where it was identified and stored. The stone's history - and prehistory - was pieced together when it was recently reexamined by Professor Colin Pillinger: "It was a real mystery that needed a lot of detective work. That's the great thing about science, that you start off with one thing and then end up with a different story altogether."

30,000 miles per hour
A tiny meteorite (2nd image) presumably remains in the private collection of German student Gerrit Blank, who was 14 when it flew down from space at an estimated 30,000mph, grazed him, and landed on the pavement: "At first I just saw a large ball of light, and then I suddenly felt a pain in my hand. Then a split second after that there was an enormous bang like a crash of thunder." The tiny stone, most of which would have burned up in the atmosphere,still left a smoking crater a foot wide.
__________
American astronaut Frank Culbertson
as he flew over Manhattan
alone in the International Space Station
(more here)
__________
of American Astronaut
Neil Armstrong (1930-2012),
the 1st man to walk on the moon
__________
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1 comment:

  1. Hello,
    Thanks for sharing such a fine post.i'm enjoying very much about the knowledge of ancient marble. thank's
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    ReplyDelete

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