Peruvian meteorite confounds scientists

HOUSTON, March 12 (UPI) -- A meteorite that hit the earth in the Peruvian countryside last year should have never made it through the atmosphere, scientists say.

The meteorite, which was comprised of stone, reached the Earth's surface intact, a feat scientists thought was impossible until a recent study of the 40-foot-wide, 10-foot-deep crater, the BBC reported.


Typically only meteorites comprised of metal make it to the Earth's surface intact.

"This just isn't what we expected," Professor Schultz of Brown University in the United States said during a conference in Houston on the Sept. 15, 2007, impact. "It was to the point that many thought this was fake. It was completely inconsistent with our understanding of how stony meteorites act."

Peruvians who visited the impact site shortly after the meteorite struck reported feeling sick and dizzy, conditions some scientists said could have been brought on by mass hysteria.

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