The main remnant of the Chelyabinsk meteorite is to be hoisted to the surface within days.
The main body of the meteorite was located by divers on Monday lying under 2.5 metres of silt, which is now being removed. Picture: Maksim Kersantinov
The celestial body exploded in a spectacular fireworks show above the Urals city early on 15 February, leaving 1,500 injured, mainly by shattered glass, and many with psychological distress. This fist-sized lump was found as scientists removed silt on Lake Chebarkul's floor from the resting place of the main body of the meteorite which is estimated to weigh hundreds of metric tons.
Other debris from the meteorite has been collected after falling on land but scientists are especially keen to examine the core of the space object.
'A meteorite chunk roughly the size of a human fist has been lifted from the depth of 13 metres in Lake Chebarkul,' said a statement by the Urals Federal University.
Its authenticity was confirmed by Viktor Grokhovsky, founder and leader of the university's meteorite expedition.
'I received images of this object, which according to members of the expedition has slight magnetic properties and has a brown crust with traces of smelting. I confirmed that this indeed was a meteorite,' he said.
Other debris from the meteorite has been collected after falling on land but scientists are especially keen to examine the core of the space object. Pictures: Maksim Kersantinov, Nikolai Murzin, Maksim Shipelov
The main body of the meteorite was located by divers on Monday lying under 2.5 metres of silt, which is now being removed.
The salvage company Aleut from Yekaterinburg is constructing a dome over the meteorite enabling the removal of the silt, before the rock is hoisted to the surface. Spokesman Nikolai Murzin said: 'There are a number of ways to rise it. We can use pontoons, or use some lifting device… It is hard to say until we examine it'.
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