Russian meteor puts Don Stimpson, meteor expert, on map

HAVILAND, Kan. - A Kansas man's phone has been ringing off the hook since Friday, when a meteor sent a shockwave through a town in Russia.

People around the United States are looking for answers to questions about meteors from Don Stimpson, a meteorite expert.

Stimpson operates the Kansas Meteorite Museum in Haviland -- a rural south central Kansas town.

"It's in the middle of nowhere," quipped Stimpson.

"A lot of folks are calling just wondering if this event in Russia was real," he said. 

His conclusion?

"It certainly looks real."

People believe the bio-physicist should know because he lives on a meteorite farm. It was 40,000 years ago when a meteorite weighing about 10,000 pounds -- about the size of this week's Russian meteor -- once crashed and burned.

Today, he and his wife are still finding pieces of the rock.

"It spread itself across an area about six miles long and one mile wide," Stimpson explained.

The Stimpson's sell the space rocks on eBay for a few dollars to help keep the museum open.

He said there has been renewed interest in meteors since the Russian scare on Friday. Stimpson wishes the government would show more interest as well, since thousands of small meteorites enter the Earth's atmosphere every night and large asteroids fly close by.

To find out more about the Kansas Meteorite Museum log on to: http://www.kansastravel.org/kansasmeteoritemuseum.htm
 

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