After the American businessman Kenneth Arnold in 1947 noticed unusual, plate-like objects in the sky, they started talking about a sensation: aliens arrived on Earth. What bold hypotheses and colorful pictures have not been created since then by human imagination! It turned out that some earthlings not only saw the "green men", but also talked with them. But the real sensation was the interest in "flying saucers" from the Academy of Sciences. In 1991, the Academy of Sciences of the USSR published a book by U. V. Platov and V. V. Rubtsov “UFOs and modern science” at the Nauka publishing house. For the first time at a high scientific level, the Russian reader learned about the existence of "flying saucers." The examples of descriptions given in this book were colorful and varied. For example, on January 24, 1878, a Texas farmer, J. Martin, described a disc-shaped object, "flying with amazing speed in the sky." Or, for example, this fact: on June 24, 1947, an American pilot, flying on his plane near Mount Rainier, Washington, noticed nine strange objects in the sky. One of them resembled a crescent moon with a small dome in the middle, eight others were flat disks, glistening in the sunlight...
The real "plate boom" has begun.
Scientists did not stand aside either. In 1968, the United States published a "Scientific Study of Unidentified Flying Objects." 37 scientists signed it. They expressed their opinion on this issue on 1485 pages, illustrated with 94 images of “flying saucers”. This "work" ended with the words: "There is no evidence to justify the assumption that space aliens have invaded the Earth’s atmosphere".
Exactly 20 years later, a young Soviet scientist, researcher at the Central Institute of Aviation Motor Engineering (TsIAM) Andrei Zlobin , who had long studied the problem of the Tunguska meteorite and visited the site of the space disaster in 1908, put forward a bold hypothesis. It was based on the idea of the unusual electrical properties of a meteorite, which are called superconductivity.
“For the first time in the world, I proposed the idea of meteorites-superconductors. In my opinion, the secrets of flying saucers no longer exist. Flying saucers are meteorites-superconductors! Yes, it’s just ordinary meteorites that have just arrived to Earth from deep space and are therefore very cold, ”said Andrei Zlobin , Ph.D. in Engineering Science, expert of the Planetary Defense Center. “The comets and asteroids that come from deep space are very cold.” The ice comet nucleus may contain an asteroid metal body. In deep space, the temperature is extremely low, sufficient for superconductivity. Having entered the Earth’s atmosphere, the icy shell of the comet’s nucleus quickly evaporates, and the superconductor meteorite takes the form of a flying saucer in the earth’s magnetic field, ”the scientist said.
An article by Andrei Zlobin was first published in a scientific collection of the Tomsk Polytechnic Institute in 1988. After that, a public Atmospheric Research Laboratory was created at CIAM. Her goal was the study of space superconductors. Soon after, TsIAM officially sent an article by A.E. Zlobin on meteorite superconductor to the Meteorite Commission of the Siberian Branch of the USSR Academy of Sciences. The physical phenomena associated with the flight of a superconductor meteorite in the atmosphere made it possible to explain the shape of what was called a "flying saucer". At the same time, a mechanism for the destruction of the most dangerous metal asteroids was proposed.
But, unfortunately, the ideas of the Russian scientist were in demand only after decades, until people were bored with stories about aliens and "flying saucers", which the television and film industry began to exploit en masse. In 2009, Academician S. Grigoryan quoted the hypothesis of a superconductor meteorite in the RFBR Bulletin, which is published by the Russian Foundation for Basic Research. After this, the ideas of a Russian scientist interested foreign researchers. Finally, in 2018, the prestigious American scientific journal Science published an article with experimental confirmation of meteorite superconductivity. The authors of the work were several researchers. There were no links to Andrei Zlobin’s publications in the Science article... And just recently, this year, the same foreign researchers published another article in the works of the American National Academy of Sciences. The Russian scientific community was genuinely bewildered by the fact that in none of their articles do foreign researchers cite the work of Russian scientist A. Zlobin. It creates an unpleasant impression that Russia is striving to push aside the right to priority of an important discovery. Despite the fact that the Russian priority in this area is documented.
If in the theory of superconducting meteorites our scientists were “ahead of the rest”, then, unfortunately, in the system of planetary protection of the Earth from comets and asteroids we lost to foreign scientists. Meanwhile, the fall of comets and asteroids, according to scientists, can be dangerous for thousands of people. It is enough to recall the eyewitness accounts of the fall of the Tunguska meteorite:
“Although this fire flew very quickly, I could see that it was round. All hot, and sparks flew from behind. When the fireball hid beyond the horizon, then two or three minutes later, from the same side where the ball fell, explosions were heard that resembled cannon shots. Old soldiers said: "War!"
“We rode on the field that day. At first they heard a strong roar, so the horses stopped. They saw blackness in the sky, fire tails behind this blackness, and then the fog was dark in color. The sun disappeared, darkness fell. From this blackness a flame of fire flew from south to north”.
“The smoke rose to the height of about five trees. Soon, a shaking of the earth began, and thunder was heard of great force. I was very scared and was sick for a long time from fright”.
“About 200 asteroids fly around the Earth in a year. Their diameter can reach hundreds of meters. If such a large asteroid collided with the Earth, there would be millions of human victims, and this is much worse than the coronavirus epidemic! Judge for yourselves, the power of the Chelyabinsk meteorite explosion that hit the earth’s surface on February 15, 2013 was half megatons, which is 20 times more than the explosion of a bomb dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. In 2015, it flew at a distance of about 500 thousand kilometers from Earth an asteroid with a diameter of 600 meters at a speed of 35 km per second. Together with the Ministry of Emergencies, our Planetary Defense Center has developed a complex that would help simulate the collision of an asteroid with the Earth. According to scientists, in the event of a collision with our planet, the explosion would have reached 50 thousand megatons! The consequences of such a catastrophe are difficult to predict. In the event of a fall, the diameter of the affected area would have reached 800 kilometers! But we were lucky: an asteroid passed Earth. In total, according to astronomers, about 2,000 asteroids approaching the Earth are found per year. This means that we are all in a state of permanent danger, ”said Anatoly Zaitsev, director general of the Planetary Defense Center, to NI.
A natural question arises: Does Russia have a system for detecting asteroids moving toward the Earth and warning of the danger that they can potentially bring? “It is possible to predict the approach of an asteroid or meteorite only with the help of a special detection system for these cosmic bodies. This technique is owned by the United States and other foreign countries. Our astronomers do not have such telescopes. Recently, disappointing figures were made in a report by the Academy of Sciences: we track only 0.1% of the asteroids of the number of celestial bodies that are discovered abroad. We have been struggling for several decades to create a planetary defense system in order to have launch vehicles with interceptors in case a large asteroid begins to approach the Earth, but they don’t hear us yet, ”complains the Director General of the Planetary Defense Center Anatoly Zaitsev.
But this is much more important than the maintenance of hundreds of officials in hundreds of departments of the Russian Space Agency.
One thing is good: according to scientists, in the near future a large asteroid or meteorite is not expected to approach the Earth.