Where did the Russian meteorite come from? Most likely from the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter.
Poring over crowd-sourced footage, researchers Jorge Zuluaga and Ignacio Ferrin from the University of Antioquia in Medellin, Colombia, were able to use “simple trigonometry to calculate the height, speed, and position of the rock as it fell to Earth,” says BBC News. More importantly, the duo was able to find out where Russia’s most famous meteorite was likely born.
Using astronomy software developed by the U.S. Naval Observatory, Zuluaga and Ferrin gathered enough data to trace the meteorite’s origins in outer space. The information included the meteorite’s relative angle to the horizon, the shadows it cast, and video timestamps of the rock’s screaming descent.