NASA: Meteorite Didn't Kill Man

Evidence points to 'land-based explosion'
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 10, 2016 1:06 AM CST
A space rock wasn't to blame, according to NASA experts.   (AP Photo/, Wally Pacholka)

(Newser) – Whatever it was that killed a bus driver in India on Saturday probably didn't travel through untold millions of miles of space to get there, according to NASA scientists. The 11-gram rock recovered from a college campus in Tamil Nadu is still being analyzed, but NASA scientists say that from photos alone, the incident that killed one person and injured three others appears to have been "a land-based explosion" instead of the first recorded death from a meteorite strike in history, the New York Times reports. The BBC reports that police asked scientists to examine the small stone found in a crater at Bharathidasan Engineering College after Saturday's explosion.

The dean of the Indian Institute of Astrophysics tells the Times that institute experts are looking at samples of the rock. "Considering that there was no prediction of a meteorite shower and there was no meteorite shower observed, this certainly is a rare phenomena if it is a meteorite," he says. It's not clear what else could have caused the explosion. A police spokesman tells the Times of India that they "did not find any trace of explosive substances" and are now awaiting the results of forensic tests and an autopsy of the bus driver. (Read more India stories.)

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