- Police on the mid-north coast of New South Wales are
investigating damage to a house that appears to have been caused by a meteorite.
- The residents were disturbed late last night by a noise
but were not aware of the damage until this morning.
- Police were called in this morning when the residents
noticed light shining through a hole in the roof of their house at Dunbogan.
- A small rock, about one centimetre wide, has been recovered
from inside but local police say they are unsure whether it is an extra
- It has been taken to the Port Macquarie station to be
sent away for analysis. Nobody in the house was injured.
- The incident comes a week after police found a possible
meteor strike in a dam on the northern tablelands at Guyra.
- The object that left a large hole in the floor of the
dam has not been recovered.
- It probably looks like a small hunk of railway track,
was created after the Big Bang during the formation of our solar system
and orbited between Mars and Jupiter for several billion years before falling
to Earth shortly after 8.12pm on Tuesday.
- And if it is ever recovered, the meteorite that crashed
into the water supply of the northern NSW town of Guyra would be worth
about $2000 which is good news for the Guyra Shire Council, now considered
to be its legal owner.
- The council is happy to hear from interested parties
keen to sponsor the excavation of what scientists think is most likely
a meteorite the size of a golf ball.
- "Everybody will win from that and this will give
us a real long-term benefit," council general manager Geoff Brooks
- A herd of cows looked on with interest yesterday as police
divers tried in vain to recover the meteorite, which they think is embedded
in about 4m of soft granite at the bottom of the dam.
- But they did recover some fragments and sediment, which
geologists concluded were from a meteorite.
- An Australian Geological Survey Organisation seismograph
on the campus of the University of New England, north of Armidale, detected
an east-west ground vibration at 8.12pm on Tuesday.
- This was not from an impact, but is believed to be from
the sonic boom likely to have been caused by the meteorite, which shook
the ground to the equivalent magnitude of a 2 on the Richter scale.
- "It's a really weird-looking thing," AGSO seismologist
Kevin McCue said of the reading.
- "We can't be sure what we have recorded is that
event, but there is stronger and stronger corroborating evidence that it
- The Guyra meteorite is probably composed of iron and
nickel, said Peter Flood, head of the physical sciences and engineering
school at the University of New England.
- It would have struck the Earth at an angle of 45 degrees,
possibly at a speed of up to 36,000kmh.
- The Australian Museum's curator of rocks, minerals, meteorites
and tektites (glassy non-meteorite minerals), Ross Pogson, said that as
nothing had been recovered, scientists could only speculate on what the
object might be.
- "Everyone is hoping it is a meteorite because it's
interesting for scientific research and it will bring people into the tourism
area of Guyra."
- Mr Pogson said hundreds of meteorites fell to Earth each
year, but 70 per cent went into the ocean. Of those that hit land, most