Celebrating Asteroid Day
We celebrated Asteroid Day for the first time at The English School on 27th June.
We were treated to 3 lectures, including an informative and interesting talk by our Astronomy Club President, Hrachya Zakaryan, an introduction to the event from the Regional Coordinator of Cyprus, Mr Troullias and an entertaining summary of 3 important scientific asteroid missions by Ms Demetriou.
Special thanks to KITION PLANETARIUM & OBSERVATORY for their amazing donation of an L3 Chondrite Meteorite. We now possess a piece of extraterrestrial matter!
Here is a summary of why this little piece of rock is so special:
Chondrite meteorites are stony meteorites that contain chondrules: submillimeter-size crystalline and/or glassy quasi-spheroidal or ellipsoidal inclusions, as you can see from the images of our meteorite under the microscope. Our meteorite is similar in bulk composition to the Sun’s photosphere and the study of such objects leads to clues about the formation of the solar system. This meteorite most probably originated in the main asteroid belt, it was found in Morocco in 2015. When a meteoroid enters the Earth's atmosphere it is typically travelling speeds of around 40km/s. It heats up rapidly due to friction with the atmosphere, as it decelerates. This is observed as a streak of light, or a fireball if the particle is larger. Meteorites are the fragments of a meteoroid that doe not completely vaporise in the atmosphere, fragments reach the ground. These can range in size. Chondrites are called primitive because they have changed very little since their initial formation early in the history of the solar system.
We now are the proud owners of a piece of rock from outer space that may be 4.5 billion years old.