Impact Events: What if the Tunguska Event Happened Today?
On the morning of June 30, 1908, a massive explosion occurred near the Podkamennaya Tunguska River in Yeniseysk Governorate (now Krasnoyarsk Krai), Russia. The event flattened an estimated 80 million trees over an area of 2,150 sq km (830 sq mi), and reports stated that at least three people may have died.
Where did this explosion come from? An air burst of a stony meteoroid about 160–200 feet (50–60 meters) in size that was likely traveling with a high speed of about 16 miles/s (27 km/s).
The event, called the Tunguska Event, counts as an impact event, even though no impact crater was ever found. Instead, scientists believe the meteorite disintegrated at an altitude of 3 to 6 miles (5 to 10 kilometers).
Although much larger impacts have occurred in prehistoric times, this event is the largest impact event on Earth in recorded history, and it is estimated that it would have been capable of destroying a large metropolitan area had it happened in a more densely populated area.
This brings us to the question: What would happen if the Tunguska event happened today, when cities are much more populated? YouTuber RealLifeLore tackles this question in his latest video.