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A suspected meteorite landed in a rice field in Bihar state, India.
Local farmers and villagers were working in the field when the object fell from the sky. The object was afire before it crashed into the ground with a loud thud, causing a commotion among the villagers. Upon impact, it created a four-foot-deep crater and left a cloud of smoke in the air. The locals waited for the smoke to disappear before digging up the object.
What the villagers recovered was something that looked like an ordinary rock as big as a football. It was light brown in color with a little sheen, weighed 15 kilograms, and reportedly had magnetic properties. It was brought to the Bihar Museum to be displayed. Later, the rock will be transferred to Srikrishna Science Center, where scientists will determine if it is, in fact, a meteorite.
Meteorites come from shooting stars or meteors, which are rocks that enter the Earth’s atmosphere. Meteors become meteorites when they land on the surface of the Earth. Scientists study the latter to gather more information about the solar system, the geology of our planet and our moon, and the history of life on Earth.
Although scientists delight in the information brought about by meteorites, meteorite landings can pose a threat to people. In 2016, an alleged meteorite hit a man in a school in Tamil Nadu, India. The object wreaked havoc on the school and also left a crater. Unfortunately, the man was seriously injured and died before he was even brought to the hospital.