The odds of getting beaned by a meteorite are low. Like, really low. (In fact, the odds of being killed by a meteorite are actually higher than your odds of simply being struck by one. Yes, really. See here for more info.) But last week, Novato, California resdient Lisa Webber came pretty close.
According to SPACE.com:
Homeowner Lisa Webber, a nurse at the University of California, San Francisco Medical Center, found the space rock Saturday (Oct. 20), after reading an article about the dazzling Oct. 17 fireball in the San Francisco Chronicle. She recalled hearing a sound on her roof the night the meteor was reported and went searching behind her house, where she found a 2.2 ounce (63 grams) stone.
The meteorite's discovery helps scientists define the trajectory along which the meteor fragments fell. The path began east of San Rafael and continued over west Novato, toward Sonoma, [said Peter Jenniskens, head of the CAMS (Cameras for Allsky Meteor Surveillance) project]. He hopes the find will help the CAMS team uncover more meteorites from the same fireball soon.
"The significance of this find is that we can now hope to use our fireball trajectory to trace this type of meteorite back to its origins in the asteroid belt," Jenniskens said [in this blog entry].
That's a pretty sizable chunk of space rock, people, which suggests that the fireball seen over California last week was itself, as suspected, pretty big. We'll keep you posted on any other fragments that pop up in the days ahead.
Read more at The Cameras for Allsky Meteor Surveillance News Blog and SPACE.com.
Photos via P. Jenniskens SETI Institute/NASA ARC