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The Editors

Will an Asteroid Destroy You Before You Finish This?

On Feb. 15, a 13,000-ton rock plunged through the skies above Chelyabinsk, Russia. It shone 30 times brighter than the sun, and hurtled at 42,000 miles per hour toward a city of more than a million people.

As the rock broke apart during its fiery descent, it dispersed energy equivalent to 500 kilotons of TNT, shattering thousands of windows. Some 1,500 people were injured, and shock waves caused a ribbon of damage extending 55 miles on either side of the meteor’s path. Witnesses thought a nuclear war was upon them. Luckily, no one died.