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Exploring Space - The Quest for Life Exploring Space - The Quest for Life Exploring Space - The Quest for Life
Meteorites and Life - The Possible Relationship to Life

Did We Come From Comet Dust?

The Murchison Meteorite Meets Earth

September 28, 1969, about 10:45 AM

Artist's rendering of the Murchison meteor approaching Earth in 1969.
Artist's rendering of the Murchison
meteor approaching Earth in 1969.

 

The Murchison meteorite landed in Murchison, Australia in 1969, only two months after the first man landed on the moon. Eyewitnesses saw the bright orange ball with a smoky blue trail passing through the night sky before it broke apart above the Earth with a sonic boom. Several hundred pieces fell around Murchison, ranging in size from a few ounces up to 113 pounds. The dramatic meteor shower caused only minor property damage, with one fragment puncturing a hay shed roof.


Back Introduction 4.5 billion years ago  - In the Beginning: Formation of the Solar System less that 4.5 billion years ago - Crumbs of Creation: Formation of the Oort Cloud less that 4.5 billion years ago - More Crumbs of Creation: Formation of the Asteroid Belt May 1848 - Louis Pasteur's Discovery: The Design of Life Feb. 1953 - Stanley Miller's Experiment: Sparking the Building Blocks of Life Sept. 28, 1969 - The Murchison Meteorite Meets Earth Feb. 14, 1997 - Discovering a Left-Handed Link to Space: Amino Acids Found in Meteorite Dec. 20, 2001 - A Sweet Discovery: Sugars Found in Murchison Today - The Research Continues Next