Interactive map shows every meteor to hit Earth in the last 4300 years

Last week, a surprise meteorite hit central Russia, and the effects of the space rock's shock wave injured over 1000 people. While it’s pretty rare for these falling stars to actually come down in a populated area, there have been more space rocks that hit Earth than you would think.

The image above is a heat map that shows every meteorite to hit Earth dating all the way back to 2300 BC—that’s roughly 4313 years of compiled meteoritics data! According to the The Meteoritical Society data used to build this map, that’s a total of 34,513 individual impact zones.

You can zoom into the map to see the size of the impact zone, how big the meteoroid was, along with the year it landed. It’s really interesting to see how New Mexico has been—likely coincidentally—a real hotbed for meteor strikes in America. Meanwhile, Canada appears to have been spared from major space rock bombardment, according to this set of data.

Javier de la Torre, co-founder of geography software companies Vizzuality and CartoDB, created this incredible map. From there, Javier plugged in data from The Meteoritical Society into CartoDB's mapping software, performed some SQL fine-tuning and created the map you see above.

If you prefer your meteor data in a spreadsheet format you can see the data sheet and get your data geek on.

[CartoDB via Gizmodo]

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