The Tunguska Event

I always thought it was pretty much decided that the event was an
asteroid slamming into earth. But then I found this web page

The Tunguska Event

Anitmatter just sounds so much cooler

(Fixed url codes - Nick)

[Note: This message has been edited by Nickrz]

I don’t know the details but the existence of large amounts of antimatter in the universe is more or less disproved by astronomical data. Their would be more radiation from matter-antimatter interaction if it were there. In fact, one of the puzzles of modern cosmology is why there isn’t more antimatter. If the big bang were a truly balanced event matter and antimatter would have been created in equal amounts. The preponderance of matter indicates some effect we don’t understand yet.

(Well, maybe somebody does understand by now – I’m recalling info from Steven Weinberg’s “The First Three Minutes” which was written years ago.)

“non sunt multiplicanda entia praeter necessitatem”

The most reasonable explanation of the T. Event that I’ve heard is a comet, not an asteroid.

Most asteroids are rocky (with a few metallic or carbonaceous ones), while comets are described as “dirty snowballs”. An asteroid would most likely leave a big crater, which the scientists who went to investigate didn’t find. A comet, on the other hand, could explode in the air with enough power to knock down trees, but no hole in the ground.

But also seen a suggestion that it was a tiny black hole. Even if that does seem as unsubstantiated as the antimatter.

Bob the Random Expert
“If we don’t have the answer, we’ll make one up.”

That’s I-apostrophe-ve.


Bob the Random Expert
“If we don’t have the answer, we’ll make one up.”

rjk and Markxxx: where do you get your info? I would like to get a reference to your “asteroid theory” and your “comet theory”, respectively.

The most plausible theory concerning the Tunguska event is that of a METEORITE exploding “just” before hitting earth.

An asteroid is a minor planet, or a “planetoid”. It is a small rocky solar system body that orbits the sun. Remember? Asteroid Belt, between Mars and Jupiter? Not to be confused with “meteorite”.

Why don’t you try going to discovermagazine , go to archives and search for an article titled “The Last Great Impact on Earth” on the September 1996 issue. Read it.


Men will cease to commit atrocities only when they cease to believe absurdities.

Wouldn’t both an asteroid and a comet qualify as meteorites (or more acurately, meteors) once they entered Earth’s atmospere?

PapaBear: I guess you could say so, but there is a specific implication in the word “meteorite”, namely, and let me quote from the Discover’s article I mention above, that it is a “fragment of rock or metal”:

By the way, I just lightly browsed the website’s homepage (from Markxxx OP) and my comments would only be harsh. “The Millennium Education Group” sponsored by a Dr. Dennis Ramsey (a self-proclaimed “akkadian religion” follower), claims to “…intend to propel the study of technology from today’s school into the school of tomorrow’s 21st century”.

A very “interesting” and peculiar website indeed. Including his little dog’s pictures!

Men will cease to commit atrocities only when they cease to believe absurdities.

I looked in a couple of encyclopedias and it says asteriod. I never heard of the antimatter theory till I came across that web page.

They said basically because of the radiation involved it couldn’t be a meteor. Or it was unlikely.

Anyway I don’t know what is correct but the idea of antimatter just seems so cool.

Meteor = streak of light (shooting star) produced by a
Meteoriod = mass which burns up in the atmosphere
Meteorite = mass which makes contact with earth

E1skeptic, the Discover article you cite covers about all I know about the comet idea. I don’t have any specific references; the idea has been around for quite a while. The article also mentions the possible breakup of middle-sized meteorites, which I hadn’t considered, so maybe I’ll have to change my mind on what’s “most reasonable”.

Bob the Random Expert
“If we don’t have the answer, we’ll make one up.”

I think that if the comet/meteor was made of anti-matter it would disintergrate the second it hit earth’s atmosphere. It wouldn’t reach the ground at all.

“A day without sunshine is like, you know, night.”

YOO-HOOO!!! C3!!!

Pretty please , come & tell us about how it was the big, bad alien space ship!


Seriously, no nickle-iron fragments have ever been found at the T. Event site in almost a century of searching, so a comet , made of frozen gasses, is the likely candidate.

Hey, Daniel, who told you that? From the Discover Magazine’s article previously mentioned:

Why don´t you check the article? You might find it to be interesting.

Men will cease to commit atrocities only when they cease to believe absurdities.

i will look up the article. my info source was obviously a dated one. my apologies, ladies & gentlemen.