"Shortly after 7 A.M. on June 30, 1908, early rising farmers,
herdsmen, and trappers in the sparsely settled vastness of
the central Siberia Plateau watched in awe as a cylindrical
object, glowing with an intense bluish --- white light and
trailing a fiery tail, raced across a clear blue sky toward
the northern horizon. At 7:17, over a desolate region of bogs
and low, pine covered hills traversed by the Stony Tunguska
River, it disappeared; instantly, a "pillar of fire" leaped
skyward, so high it was seen hundreds of miles away; the
earth shuddered under the impact of a titanic explosion; the
air was wracked by thunderous claps; and a superheated wind
rushed outward, setting yurts of the taiga on fire. At a
trading post forty miles from the blast, a man sitting on the
steps of his house saw the blinding flash and covered his
eyes; he felt scorched, as if the shirt on his back were
burning, and the next moment he was hurled from the steps by
a shock wave and knocked unconscious. Four hundred miles to
the south the ground heaved under the tracks of the recently
completed Trans-Siberian Railway, threatening to derail an
express. And above the Tunguska region a mass of black
clouds, piling up to a height of twelve miles, dumped a
shower af "black rain" on the counrtyside --- dirt and debris
sucked --- up by the explosion --- while rumblings like heavy
artillery fire reverberated throughout central Russia.
Since seismographs and barographs everywhere had recorded the
event, the entire world knew that something extraordinary had
occurred in the Siberian wilderness. But what? Scientists
conjectured that a giant meteorite must have fallen, explod-
ing from the intense heat its impact generated. On hitting
the ground, such a body would, theoretically, have blown out
a huge crater like the one in Arizona, three-quarters of a
mile square, left by a meteorite that fell fifty thousand
years ago, but the Siberian "impact site" turned out to be a
dismal swamp, with no trace of a meteorite to be seen."
The Tunguska Incident.. Another view:
Extracted from "THE COMET IS COMING!" by Nigel Calder
Copyrighted 1980 * British Boradcasting Corporation
35 Marylebone High Street, London, England W1M 4AA
Early in the morning of 30 June 1908 the driver of the Trans-
Siberian express heard loud bangs and imagined that his train
had exploded. When he stopped, his wide-eyed passengers said
they had seen a bright blue ball of fire streaking across the
sky, trailing smoke. Six hundred kilometres away to the north-
east, in the valley of the Podkamennaya Tunguska river, a
blast uprooted huge areas of forest. It slaughtered reindeer
and scattered the tents of nomads camping far from the
explosion. In present-day terms, it was like an H-bomb going
off. Experts hearing the news suspected a big meteorite but
inconvenient wars and revolution prevented them reaching the
scene until 1927. Then, and in subsequent Soviet expediltions,
they found the shattered forest but no large crater, only a
number of small holes and some meteoritic grains a tenth of a
millimetre in diameter.
The strange goings-on in Siberia were therefore open to any
outlandish or other worldly explanation. When the physicists
discovered anti-matter people suggested that a chunk of that
deadly stuff, annihilating ordinary matter, had caused the
Tunguska Event. A distinguished British nuclear-weapons maker
supported the suggestion that a natural nuclear bomb fell out
of the sky at Tunguska. Flying saucers became popular, so the
Siberian backwoods were flattened by an alien spaceship crash-
ing, or taking off. No sooner had astronomers become inter-
ested in black holes than one of those was said to have bored
through the Earth: in at Tunguska and out through the Atlan-
By far the most plausible explanation of the Tunguska Event was
that a small comet hit the Earth. This suggestion originated in
in 1930 with Francis Whipple of Kew, London, not to be confused
with Fred Whipple, Snowball Maker, of Cambridge, Massachusetts.
But the rise of the snowball theory of comets encouraged that
view of Tunguska, and by the l960s Soviet scientists were
inclined to agree with it. In 1975, an Israeli scientist, Ari
Ben-Menahem of Rehovot, reassessed all the information and con-
cluded that the main explosion occurred 8.5 kilometres above
the ground and was equivalent to 12.5 megatons (million tons)
of high explosive going off. That equals a moderately large H-
bomb. To cause such a blast, David Hughes of Sheffield calcul-
ated that the impact on the atmosphere of a Whipple-Whipple
snowball a mere forty metres in diameter, and weighing about
50,000 tons, would be sufficient.
The absence of large stones and craters makes sense if the comet
consisted mainly of ices. That it was not spotted in space be-
fore it hit is unsurprising: so small a comet would not be
visible to the naked eye until a few minutes before impact. Mat-
erial shed from the comet as it sloped in through the atmosphere
above Europe and Asia explains a mysterious brightening of the
night sky noted in those regions in July 1908. There was just
one snag. An American Nobel prizewinner had supported the propo-
sition that the Tunguska Event was caused by a body containing
anti-matter, by saying that the amount of radioactive carbon in
Earth's atmosphere was increased by the event. Hughes and a col-
league went to some pains to account for the radiocarbon, until
a letter from the famous man said he meant the opposite: there
no increase in radiocarbon.
The Tunguska comet coincided with a daylight meteor shower
consisting of dust particles left in the orbit of the comet
Encke, so it was probably a very small fragment of that comet.
Lubor Kresak of Bratislava has made out the detailed case for
this identification. If tbe whole nucleus of Encke, 100,000
times more massive, hit Siberia, it would kill more than rein-
deer. But the threat to the earth comes not just from the
active comets that brandish their heads and tails around the
Solar System, but from the small, dark apollo objects, the
micro-planets that cross the Earth's path.
End of Quote
This appears to have as many holes in it as the Meteorite
theory. What material created the fusion? These scientist
appear to be guessing like the rest. Comets do NOT maneuver
as witnesses in other writings have stated.
Here is the Third and last Version..
Radioactive? Yes, many newspapers carried, early in 1959, a new
theory about what had previously been regarded as the fall of a gi-
ant meteorite in Siberia over fifty years ago. The London Daily
Express of May 4, 1959, published an article which stated:
A theory that a spaceship from another planet reached Earth 51
years ago is causing a major split among Russia's leading scien-
An expedition from Moscow is now working in the remote forest
where on June 30, 1908, what has been known as the 'Great Siber-
ian Meteorite' fell,
Radiation measurements are being taken.
Three of the Russian scientists, Professors Kukarkin, Kninov
and Fesenkov, say it was PROBABLY a meteorite. But they cau-
tiously use the word "phenombnon" instead.
And Professors Alexander Kazantsev and B. Lapunov insist it
MUST have been a rocket or ship coming from Mars.
Kazantsev, who has been accumulating evidence for the spaceship
theory for years, has released some details to the Czechs and
Never has the mystery been considered with such thorough-
These are the facts: On that June day the inhabitants of the
Jenissi district of Siberia saw a gigantic ball of fire. Imme-
diately afterwards there was a colossal explosion which devas-
tated a forest area of 70 miles in diameter.
The shock waves were registered in England
Scientists looked in vain for traces of a meteorite and a
crater. Curiously, in the center of the devastated region only
the tops of trees had been snapped off.
But the meteorite theory persisted-until the atomic bomb
exploded over Hiroshima.
Then just afer the war, Kazantsev tentatively said that the
Hiroshima devastation bore great similarity to that in the
He said then: 'An atomic explosion took place in Siberia at
the height of one and a half miles.' He was not taken seriously.
In 1951 he was helped by Professor Lapunov and both of them
formed the idea of an atomic propelled vehicle which exploded
while trying to land.
Several expeditions were sent to the site. One came back last
summer with the report: No meteorite evidence at all.
This report set the controversy alight again.
Soviet aerodynamics expert, Manotskov, has lent strength to
the spaceship theory. He says that the Siberian 'fireball' was
braking as it approached Earth, so that its final speed was about
one to two kilometers per second, instead of between 30 to 60
kilometers per second as with meteorites.
The SYDNEY SUN, Australia, quoting from the official Czech
trade union newspaper, PRACE, stated that the Russian scientist
in a book called A GUEST FROM THE UNIVERSE had written that people
living near the explosian died of a then unknown illness with the
same symptoms as exposure to atomic radiation and that the explo-
sion had its biggest impact at some distance from its center
exactly like an atom explosion.
I still say it was an exploded UFO or missle..NOT a comet or
meteorite... For thos that asked.. Jim
Carl Sagan just barely touches on the sibject but will say very
little about it.