The Greenland Qaqortoq* Meteorite*Tradition dictates that a meteorite fall is named after the closest post office. This is Qaqortoq, at the southern tip of Greenland.
"A large fireball was witnessed over Southern Greenland on 9 December 1997. It passed a bit south of Nuuk in a southeasterly direction and may possibly have landed in Greenland itself rather than plunging into the sea. An air search was launched. The original size of the bolide could have been from 50 m if it was a stony body, to 100 m if it was an icy cometary fragment".This report is copyright 1997 Pallasite Press from Meteorite! Magazine - Editor: Joel Schiff.
Links to other websites
- The most detailed compilation of comments, images and maps is on the excellent Dutch Meteor Society has a Qaqortoq summary page
- The Danish Center for Remote Sensing (DCRS) at the Dept. of Electromagnetic Systems at the Technical University of Denmark has worked on the Meteorite search in Greenland. They analysed an area of approximately 10,000 square kilometers mapped using its aircraft-borne EMISAR (Electromagnetics Institute Synthetic Aperture Radar) Sensor, but no craters or other surface feature which could be related to the fireball event was found.
- There is very good coverage of the now renamed "Greenland Fireball Event" on the Danish astronomer Holger Pedersen's webpage, updated every day or so.
- Other eyewitness accounts and seismic data were recorded on a KAF (Copenhagen Astronomical Society) webpage entitled Meteor impact in Greenland? compiled by Keld Rasmussen and Henrik Persson, (this appears to have been deleted).
- See also The Meteoritical Society website in the USA.
The image previously shown on this page is now likely to be "a large lenticularis cloud the occurence of which is not uncommon in this area". If the cloud had been due to the meteorite its height was estimated by the Tycho Brahe Planetarium to be 6 - 8 km (based on the shadow cast). The enclosed volume of air would thus be at least 50,000 cubic km. If the moist air contained 0.1 gram of water per litre derived either from the meteoroid or from resulting evaporating ice, this amounts to 5 billion tons. Following this argument, the minimum meteorite mass required to melt and evaporate this amount of water is 4 million tons, if the velocity of the impactor was 70 km per second. Most scientists now dispute and reject this approach.