No One Knows What Caused a Massive 1908 Explosion in Siberia

No One Knows What Caused a Msive 1908 Explosion in Siberia

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On June 30, 1908, there w a msive explosion in a remote forest in Siberia, near the Podkamennaya Tunguska river. The explosion was so powerful, it flattened more than 80 million across 820 square miles (2,123 square meters). Later estimates compared the explosion to 1,000 atomic bombs.

People more than 40 miles (64 kilometers) away reported seeing a fireball bright the sun, followed by a searing heat; many were blown off their . Effects of the blt were felt far away Great Britain. But thanks to the political upheavals in Russia at the time (it w staring down two revolutions and a world war) the Tunguska event wn’t investigated until almost two decades later, when a scientific team led an expedition to the area in 19.

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Now, more than a century later, questions still remain. Stuff They Don’t Want You To Know hosts Ben Bowlin and Matt Frederick are joined by Stuff to Blow Your Mind’s Joe McCormick to examine all the evidence and attempt to explain the real cause behind Fire in the Sky.

The 1908 Tunguska explosion w so unusual that theories about what caused it abound. Some believe it w a comet or meteorite that exploded before impact, while others think it w Agda, the god of Thunder who triggered the blt because he w displeed with the Siberian Evenki people. One writer even suggested an alien spaceship w trying to get to the nearby Lake Baikal for fresh water when it exploded just before landing. However, no remnants of any kind of spacecft h been found in the area, undermining that theory for even the most strident believers.

In 1973, two scientists hypothesized that a miniature black hole somehow crhed into Earth, causing an antimatter explosion, and shot out the other side. But no exit wound or similar damage h ever been found or reported, that theory ey to dismiss well.

It’s also been argued that famed inventor Nikola Tesla caused the explosion when he tested his theorized “death ray,” a kind of particle-beam tool that would be able to repel any kind of attack. Tesla talked about this invention frequently, envisioning it to be the end of all war. Could he have tried his invention in this remote area? Or perhaps he w working from his Wardenclyffe Tower in New York, trying to send a wireless signal to explorer Robert Peary in the North Pole, but hit the Tunguska region instead?

This theory, too, h met with disdain, simply because there w never any evidence that Tesla had managed to create that kind of advanced technology. Whatever device he used would have required the 1908 New York power grid to opete, and could never genete the kind of energy releed at the Tunguska event.

The most popular theory is that this w an impact event, in which a meteorite, comet or asteroid hits Earth. The only problem? There’s no cter in the Tunguska region; the only physical evidence of the explosion w the flattened . How could there be an impact from a meteor that leaves no impact?

In 2007, Italian scientists proposed that perhaps the nearby small Lake Cheko w the cter, and that the teroid w sitting at the bottom of it waiting to be discovered, but others say that their evidence isn’t compelling enough to hold up to scrutiny.

What do Matt, Ben and Joe think? W it a comet, which is made up mostly of ice, exploding in the air from atmospheric stress, its fgments vaporizing? Or perhaps a rocky meteorite, which exploded into a fine dust and settled into the soft, peat ground, to detect? You’ll have to listen to the entire podct to find out. Or to at let hear Joe der a demonic chant to the Evenki thunder god.

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No One Knows What Caused a Msive 1908 Explosion in Siberia


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