Officials Divided Over Veracity of Meteorite Crash

Officials Divided Over Veracity of Meteorite CrashOfficials Divided Over Veracity of Meteorite Crash

Contrary to earlier reports claiming a meteorite had not crashed, an official in Alborz Province confirmed the celestial object had indeed landed in the province west of Tehran.

Abolqasem Baqeri, head of the Crisis Management Office at told IRNA the meteor had landed in a barren region between the Eshtehard and Nazarabad counties.

"We have not yet received reports of damages, but given the location the likelihood of damages is low," he said.

The latest meteor sightings were reported on Thursday night in the provinces of Zanjan, Qazvin and Alborz as people said a "shiny object was spotted soaring across the sky."

On Friday, government officials denied the reports, saying "their investigation did not find evidence of meteorite" in space.

Arsalan Qassemi, governor of the town of Buin Zahra in Qazvin, said that meteors had not hit his town. Head of the Iranian Red Crescent Society in Qazvin, Hamid Rah, said there were no credible reports of a meteorite landing in the area.

Head of the Iranian Amateur Astronomers' Society Masoud Atighi too denied reports claiming a meteor had landed in Iran. "At times like this it is imperative to seek the opinion of experts to prevent unfounded rumors."

 A meteorite is a solid piece of debris from a source such as an asteroid or a comet, which originates in outer space and survives its impact with the Earth's surface. It is called a meteoroid before its impact.

A meteorite's size can range from small to extremely large. When a meteoroid enters the atmosphere, friction, pressure, and chemical interactions with the atmospheric gases cause it to heat up and radiate that energy, thus forming a fireball, also known as a meteor or shooting/falling star.