Russians pull half-tonne meteorite from lake

Russian divers have pulled a half-tonne, 1.5-meter-long suspected meteorite from the bottom of a lake in the Urals – a space rock that is assumed to have originated from a meteor that injured more than 1,000 people in February, Phys Org reports.

The meteor that blew up over Chelyabinsk in southwestern Russia earlier this year measured roughly 60 feet, according to a CNN report. It's estimated that the force of the explosion was equivalent to 30 of the nuclear bombs dropped on Japan by the US in World War II.

Divers pulled the meteorite from Lake Chebarkul on Wednesday in an event that was broadcast on live television.

A researcher from the Chelyabinsk State University says initial observations indicate that the rock is indeed part the Chelyabinsk meteor. He also said that it probably ranks among the 10 largest meteorites ever found.

The exact weight of the meteorite has not yet been determined because the rock broke the scale and then fragmented into three pieces.

Russian officials have already found about 100 fragments from the February explosion. Until now, the biggest one weighed 11 pounds.

Although the blast injured more than 1,000 people and cost $33 million in damages, the city is trying to make the best of it. According to Phys Org, residents are urging the government to make a six-storey-tall statue in honour of the space rock. The city is also looking to attract tourists with meteorite-related hiking trails.

See photos here.