Gladysheva O.G. Peculiarity of the flight and the destruction of the Tunguska cosmic body. In book: Natural Disasters: Prevention, Risk Factors and Management. Editors: Biljana Raskovic and Svetomir Mrdja. Nova Science Publishers, Inc. pp.281–296. 2013.
Abstract. The Tunguska disaster, which occurred at about 7 a.m. on June 30, 1908 over Eastern Siberia, has no equivalent in the Earth’s recent past. The interaction of the Tunguska cosmic body with the Earth’s atmosphere was witnessed by thousands of inhabitants of Eastern Siberia, who noted unique characteristics of this event. The visual size of the flying object was >2 km, which is considerably, (>10 times) greater than the real size of the Tunguska body. The body’s substance was visibly breaking into pieces. The flying object resembled something aflame: both in its colour and form, i.e. the substance that separated from the object was undergoing a reaction of burning with atmospheric oxygen. The duration of the flight of the cosmic body was more than 1 min. The object became visible at heights of >500 km. The dispersion ellipse of the Tunguska cosmic body, the longer and shorter axis of which are ~4000 and ~2000 km, respectively, was determined. The southern part of the dispersion ellipse was found on the base of the form of the area covered by noctilucent clouds, which appeared as a result of the Tunguska disaster. The northern part of this ellipse corresponds to an area with an intense growth of trees, located to the north of the epicenter of the disaster. To form a similar dispersion ellipse, the object had to explode at a height of more than 1,000 km over the Earth’s surface. The final destruction of the Tunguska body took place at a height of ~6 km above the ground. In spite of the liberation of energy in 5 10^(23) erg, during this explosion several hundred trees survived the disaster, located at a distance of