A Norwegian skydiver captured what scientists say is an extremely rare occurrence when a meteorite flew past him in mid-air while he was in the middle of a jump.
Anders Helstrup was jumping in the summer of 2012 when the space rock flew past him, but during the jump, he wasn’t actually aware that it had happened.
“I got the feeling that there was something, but I didn’t register what was happening,” said Helstrup to NRK Norway.
After he landed, Helstrup decided to go back through the footage to see if something happened, and right away, he noticed the rock fly past him.
“When we stopped the film, we could clearly see something that looked like a stone,” said Helstrup. “At first it crossed my mind that it had been packed into a parachute, but it’s simply too big for that.”
He and some helpers decided to take a couple of days to go back to the site and search for the meteorite.
“We continued the search during the summer,” said Helstrup. “I got my girlfriend, family and friends to join the project. We searched the forest and kept looking.”
Helstrup decided to bring the footage to the Natural History Museum in Oslo where scientists were completely shocked and totally convinced that it was a meteorite.
“It can’t be anything else,” said Hans Amundsen, a seasoned geologist. “The shape is typical of meteorites – a fresh fracture surface on one side, while the other side is rounded.”
Amundsen said that the meteorite had fallen straight down in a stage called “dark flight” and claimed that this is the first time in history that’s ever been caught on camera.
“It has never happened before that a meteorite has been filmed during dark flight,” said Amundsen. “This is the first time in world history.” He added that the chances of filming a meteorite like Helstrup did are “much less likely than winning the lottery three times in a row.”