The meteor that crashed into Russia on Friday weighed approximately 10,000 tons and is estimated at 55 feet in diameter, reports Fox News on February 19. The impact was the largest object to hit the earth since 1908.
The fireball that occurred as the meteor disintegrated as it neared earth in Chelyabinsk, Russia, released approximately 500 kilotons of energy, the equivalent of 30 Hiroshima atomic bombs.
"We would expect an event of this magnitude to occur once every 100 years on average," said Paul Chodas of NASA's Near-Earth Object Program Office at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. "When you have a fireball of this size we would expect a large number of meteorites to reach the surface and in this case there were probably some large ones."
Although large fragments of a meteor of this size are expected, they have yet to be recovered. According to the Fox News report, a team from the Ural Federal University has recovered 53 fragments, with the largest being 7 millimeters in diameter.