2002 Vitim event

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Impact site
Vitim bolide impact site

The 2002 Vitim event or Bodaybo event is believed to be an impact by a bolide or comet nucleus in the Vitim River basin. It occurred near the town of Bodaybo in the Mamsko-Chuisky district of Irkutsk Oblast, Siberia, Russia on September 25, 2002 at approximately 22:00 (local time, UTC/GMT +9 hours: ISO 8601 format 2002-09-25T13:00Z). The event was detected by a US military missile-defense satellite.

Some attempts were made to define the magnitude of the explosion. U.S. military analysts calculated it was between 0.2–0.5 kilotons, while Russian physicist Andrey Olkhovatov estimates it at 4–5 kilotons.

Information about the event appeared in the mass media and among scientists after only a week. Initially no one was able to understand the magnitude of the explosion. A small expedition, sent by the Institute of Sun–Earth Physics (Irkutsk), tried to find a meteorite within about 10 km from Bodaybo town (people told them– "it has fallen beyond the nearest mountain!").

Some people[who?] suggest that this phenomenon is similar to the Tunguska event of 1908.


  • 1st - Russian MChS (Emergency Rescue) team tried to find an object near Bodaybo.
  • 2nd - October, 2002 expedition of Irkutsk State University (leader S. Yazev).

Official expeditions in 2002–2003 never reached the impact site, situated in a remote Siberian taiga.

Kosmopoisk expedition[edit]

As reported by ufology organization Kosmopoisk, in May 2003 an expedition, performed by Kosmopoisk (leader — V. Chernobrov) reached the presumed impact point (about 50 km from Vitimsky settle point). The situation there looked similar to that of the Podkamennaya Tunguska River after the Tunguska event in 1908. Snow and water samples were analyzed and found to contain an abnormal amount of tritium, as well as radioactive isotopes of cobalt and caesium.

Summing up all the information, V.A. Chernobrov suggested that the Vitim event could be caused by a comet nucleus with a diameter about 50–100 meters.

See also[edit]


External links[edit]

  • The Vitim bolide at Meteorites Australia (Meteorites.com.au) (latest update 26 March 2006)
  • CCNet bulletin 50/2003 (7 June 2003), Cambridge Conference Network archive
  • CCNet bulletin 55/2003 (10 July 2003), Cambridge Conference Network archive
  • Whitehouse, David (8 October 2002). "Cash plea for space impact study". BBC News. Retrieved 3 April 2014. </ref>
  • Kasatkina, E.A. & Shumilov, O.I. (2005). Some atmospheric and magnetospheric effects possibly related to the Vitim bolide impact. Retrieved June 24, 2005. [1]
  • Chernobrov, Vadim & Soleny, Alexander & Lawrence, Maria (2003). Results from the VITIM-2003 expedition (dead link) [2]

Coordinates: 58°16′16″N 113°27′13″E / 58.271016°N 113.453579°E / 58.271016; 113.453579