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Meteor

  • 'Out of this World' fireball blazes across the sky in Natchez, Mississippi

    For one Natchez resident, a late-night trip out of his house turned into an otherworldly experience when he spotted a bright orange fireball streak across the sky.

    "It scared the heck out of me," Alex Sandel said Monday morning. "It was bright orange, red and spinning."

    Living near Merit Health Natchez, Sandel said he has stepped outside to watch a helicopter take off from the hospital's helipad Sunday evening at approximately 10:15 when he was startled by the fireball streaking across the sky.

    "I was outside waiting for the helicopter to take off when I saw this thing coming," Sandel said. "It came from the north and went straight south."

    Sandel said the fireball was traveling at a slow enough speed for him to reach his phone to capture an image of the flying object.

    "It wasn't any faster than a jet," Sandel said.

    Monday morning Sandel said he did some research online and believes what he saw was part of a meteorite that was streaking across the sky.

    Data collected on the American Meteor Society show that several fireball sightings were made Sunday night in Mississippi and Louisiana between Como, Mississippi, and Harahan, Louisiana, were reported at approximately the same time Sandel reported his fireball sighting. Those sightings are pending confirmation by the AMS.

    (View video here)

  • Bizarre Burning fireball spotted over the UK

    An immense fireball was spotted last night over Hull, with images capturing the moment the inferno burned up in the atmosphere as it plummeted towards Earth. 

    The Humberside 'bright orange' object was spotted by several people moving slowly over the city leaving a trail in its wake before disappearing.

    Experts believe the unusual occurrence was a meteor, potentially linked to the annual Lyrid meteor shower due to commence this week.

    Rebecca Holmes saw it from her garden in Bransholme, near Kingston upon Hull. 

    She said : 'I was sat in the garden, my husband was doing some gardening and I looked up and it was so bright orange and it was just gliding really slowly like something was burning but it was definitely too slow to be a shooting star.

    'It was weird it looked like either a plane or a rocket or something.'

    In fact, it was most likely a meteor, potentially an early visitor from the annual Lyrid meteor shower, according to the experts. 

    Brofessor Brad Gibson, Director of the E.A. Milne Centre for Astrophysics at the University of Hull, told MailOnline: 'Without more context, the most likely explanation as to the object reported in the sky over Hull on Sunday evening is that it was a meteor.

    'The Lyrid meteor shower is caused by debris which has been left by Comet Thatcher, which last visited the inner Solar System over 150 years ago in 1861. 

    'It is expected to return in the year 2276, and will burn up as it enters the Earth's atmosphere.

    'As said previously, without more context as to this particular sighting, it is difficult to give a definitive explanation. 

    'However, based on the time of year, it is entirely possible that the object reported by residents in Hull formed part of the Lyrid meteor shower.'

    Last week, a similar event occurred in Cambridge.

  • Daylight Fireball Explodes over Washington State, Followed by Powerful Sonic Boom

    A fireball exploded over Washington state, U.S. at around 01:57 UTC on May 7, 2020 (18:57 PDT, May 6), with a dozen eyewitness reports submitted to the American Meteor Society (AMS).​ A loud and deep boom was reported during the event, which startled many people in the area.​

    Observers came from areas including Anacortes, Bellingham, Brier, Kingston, and Vancouver.

    The fireball reportedly produced a loud bang, which made rounds on local news outlets as residents were left startled and shook.

    Mountlake Terrace resident David Carlos dubbed it "the Quarantine Boom of 2020", describing that he felt a dull shake in his home during the event, which also startled his cat. He went outside to investigate, thinking it was probably something that crashed on the roof.

    Carlos learned that a lot of people nearby also had the same experience when he checked social media. In Snohomish County, residents reported hearing the boom from Brier, Edmonds, Everett, Lynnwood, Mukilteo, with one witness comparing the sound to a gas explosion.

    An Edmonds resident named Nicole Daugherty said the boom sounded like "a truck going over speed bumps, but weirder." Eastmont local Shannon Leonard thought it sounded as if a volcano had erupted.

    According to the AMS' estimated trajectory, the fireball traveled west to east and was visible from Keyport to nearby Kirkland.

    "The boom was reported on social media all over Kitsap County," said one of the eyewitnesses who submitted reports to the organization.

    "I did not see this, but myself and two other family members heard a loud boom and felt the house shake," another reporter stated.

    "We all ran outside to check nothing had hit the house-- later I read on our small community Facebook page that the same loud boom had been heard by others and one person reported they had seen a fireball at the exact time we heard this boom."

    A viewer in Brier named Scott Story was able to capture the fireball and the sonic boom. "[There was a] huge boom that shook the house, and many people on our Facebook group heard it, saw it, and had their homes shook by it," he said.

    The footage was examined by Toby Smith, a senior lecturer in astronomy at the University of Washington, and agreed that the fireball likely produced the bang.

    "It sort of screams this was a meteor that entered the earth’s atmosphere," said Smith, adding that the fireball looked like it broke up but also appeared huge enough to cause a sonic boom.

    Since meteors can strike the top of the atmosphere as fast as about 40 000 km/h (25 000 mph), they can break the sound barrier.

    Fireball report coordinator Robert Lunsford said at least a hundred reports is needed to develop accurate information on where the meteor went and where it disappeared.

    Lunsford added that the fireball was likely a random event and not part of the Eta Aquarid meteor shower.

  • Fireball Explodes over Belgium, Meteorites Possible

    A bright fireball exploded over Belgium at 02:04 UTC on Wednesday, March 18, 2020. The International Meteor Organization (IMO) received 6 reports from eyewitnesses including those in the Netherlands, Luxembourg, and Germany. According to IMO, the meteoroid entered the atmosphere at nearly 12 km/s and an angle close to 60°.

    Six reports submitted to IMO were from observers in District de Luxembourg; Noord-Brabant and Noord-Holland in the Netherlands; Rheinland-Pfalz in Germany; and Vlaanderen in Belgium.

    One viewer from Noord-Holland said he saw the meteor through foggy clouds as it streaked over the top right portion of the sky and flashed two times. Most of the witnesses said the fireball lasted for about three seconds and did not produce any sound.

    The FRIPON network was able to record the event in Belgium. Calculations operated from the recordings indicate that the fireball had a fairly high entry angle -- 60° and a low atmospheric entry speed of 12 km/s (3.33 mps).

    IMO reported that the meteor ended near the tripoint of Belgium, Germany, and Luxembourg.

    These meteoroid characteristics are nearly comparable with the fireball that streaked across Italy on New Year. Two meteorites were recovered after the event.

  • Flaming Meteorite Leaves Smoky Plume over Cambridgeshire, UK

    People in Cambridgeshire have been left scratching their heads over a mysterious plume of smoke that appeared over the county.

    A large flaming object was spotted spiralling in the sky at around 8pm by Gerry Underwood, 55.

    He was sitting outside his canal boat in Stretham, having a little fire, when he spotted the trail. He said: 'It looked like a very thick chemtrail to start with. It looked like a short, skinny cloud. It wasn't moving quickly at all. I'm pretty sure it wasn't a meteorite, because they are gone in seconds.

    'We have seen hundreds of shooting stars, but this definitely wasn't that either. This was coming down very slowly and spiralling. It started to glow orange as you can see in the pictures.

    'There were flames coming out of the back of it as well. It was really unusual.'

    Gerry took several pictures of the burning entity dropping through the sky, in which a huge trail can be seen behind it as it descends into the distance.

    Gerry said he was watching the unidentified object fall through the sky for 'between 10 and 20 minutes,' as it was coming down so slowly.

    Eventually, the burning mass disappeared behind the trees in the distance.

    Gerry said he was looking towards Huntingdon as he watched it descend, but stressed the object might have landed 'well beyond that.'

    He said: 'The sheer size of it is what's got me. When you look at the pictures, they show the trees in the foreground and it's way beyond that, it was very big.

    'It landed beyond the horizon, that's how big it was - we couldn't see it land.'

    Gerry said: 'We see a lot of strange things down the river, but that's the first time we've ever seen something like that.'

  • Large Green Fireball over Florida

    The American Meteor Society (AMS) received 16 reports (1532-2020) about a meteor fireball seen over Florida on Wednesday, April 1, 2020.

    A video by Joseph G. was uploaded to the AMS website.

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  • Meteor Impact in Nigeria Causes Explosion, Creates Deep Crater

    The explosion that rocked Akure, Ondo state capital, on Saturday, was caused by a giant rock from space known as meteors, a team of experts have concluded.

    A meteor is what happens when a meteoroid – a small piece of an asteroid – burns up upon entering earth’s atmosphere, creating a streak of light in the sky.

    The experts led by Adepelumi Adekunle, a professor of geophysics and earthquake engineering at Obafemi Awolowo University, said the meteors impacted the location from “an angle of 43 degrees”.

    TheCable obtained a copy of their report findings on the explosion on Sunday.

    TheCable had reported how the blast, which occurred on Saturday morning, injured some residents and destroyed a lot of houses in the area.

    The explosion also caused a deep crater on the site it occurred, cutting off the road and hindering vehicular movement.

    Rotimi Akeredolu, governor of the state, had told journalists the blast occurred after a truck conveying explosives to a quarry exploded.

    “I have been briefed by the security chiefs that in the early hours of Saturday March 28th, a vehicle in a convoy transporting explosives to a storage facility in a neighbouring state developed a fault while in transit along the Akure Owo Road about 2km from the Akure Airport,” the governor had said.

    But Adekunle said findings by his team suggest the explosion was caused by a natural phenomena, thereby contradicting the governor.

    He added there was no evidence of a buried vehicle, buried ordinance or explosives from the site, and that “foreign rocks and strange metallic objects” were found within the crater crated.

    His report read: “My Research group carried out a detailed analysis of the impact site. A circular impact crater with 21m diameter and 7.8m depth was found which suggest a natural phenomenal.

    “Water was found oozing out from the edges of the crater. A preliminary insitu vibration, noise, seismicity, water analysis, radioactivity studies, rock and soil investigation were carried out.

    “Our findings suggest that the impact of the blasting covers 1km radius of the surroundings of the crater. No evidence of fire or Burning of anything was found within the vicinity.

    “No evidence of radioactivity radiation was found within the crater and immediate vicinity. The field evidence point to a conclusion that a meteoric from an asteroid belt that travels at a great speed from space impacted the location at an angle of 43 degrees created an ejecta at South-Western part.”

    He also said a crack opening that vary in thickness from 3mm to 4 metres occurred on the wall of most of the buildings in the area, “but not at the base of the buildings”.

    ARE WE SAFE? FIRST OCCURRENCE IN NIGERIA? HOW DANGEROUS?

    The meteoroids, as explained earlier, are particles formed when two asteroids smash into another, causing their pieces to break off. An asteroid in itself is a small rocky body that orbits the sun.

    This kind of explosions happen elsewhere — and not the first that Nigeria has suffered.

    In 1962, a farmer was almost struck by a big meteorite when it came crashing down in Zagami, Katsina state.

    One of the most recent of meteor explosions was in March, 2019, which the US detected.

    It was the second largest of its kind in 30 years, and the biggest since the fireball over Chelyabinsk in Russia six years ago, in which about 1,000 persons were injured.

    Any way to avoid them? The best we could do is to act upon warnings which comes years earlier than such occurrences from the space, The Guardian reports.

    “An asteroid threat is a natural hazard that we could probably do something about now with the technology we already have. All we need to do is make it miss Earth, but in such a way that it doesn’t then come back some years later and collide with the Earth,” it adds.

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    “Is It An Asteroid?” Nigerians Question Strange Explosion In Akure

    The Ondo State is yet to give a formal report on the issue

  • Spectacular meteor fireball explosion over Oregon

    An amateur stargazer was lucky enough to spot the exact moment a fireball hit the sky, discharging a fantastic bright aura. Wade Earl from Oregon captured a meteorite explosion during the Lyrid meteor shower.

    The image, taken on April 21, 2020, was sent to the IMO (the International Meteor Organization) andAMS (the American Meteor Society) displays the meteor seemingly shattering twice as it reaches the atmosphere, meaning that Earl captured a double bursting fireball. In the image, we can spot the "W" of Cassiopeia lying to the lower right of the fireball.

    Various space objects, such as comets or asteroids, produce a bright explosion of fore when they reach the sky. Air flows into cracks and pores of the rock, dragging apart and causing it to burst. Fireballs, on the other hand, are meteors that might be brighter than anything else ever seen.

    Meteorite Explosion Lit Up the Sky over Oregon

    Due to their speed at which they touch the Earth's atmosphere, fragments bigger than one millimeter can produce a bright light as they streak through the sky. These bright meteors are also dubbed fireballs, and they sometimes strike awe or fear for those who spot them.

    While the chances of a significant asteroid crashing on Earth are small, NASA thinks there is a one in 300,000 chance every year a cosmic feature that could bring environmental damage will hit. However, there are some projects on the go which could aid Earth against possible asteroid hits.

    The space agency is now examining Asteroid Bennu, where its OSIRIS-Rex vehicle arrived back in 2018, for collecting more data. The asteroid has the potential to destroy a whole country on Earth, and according to scientists, it could crash our planet in 2135. Osiris-Rex's mission will provide important information on how to divert space objects from their impact course with Earth.

  • Tremendous Fireball Explodes over Peru

    A bright fireball exploded over Peru at around 01:00 UTC on April 16, 2020 (20:00 LT on April 15). The American Meteor Society (AMS) received two reports from witnesses in the Callao Region and Ica.

    According to local media, dozens of witnesses in Lima and Ica described the fireball as a turquoise incandescent object with a luminous trail.

    While the AMS only received one video about the event, the EXOSS Citizen Science Project posted a compilation of footage taken by various security cameras.

    In one of the videos, the meteor's explosion and fragmentation were visible. Visual reports indicate that the meteor disintegrated and may have crashed into the sea.

    "I just saw a flash of light falling from the sky, am I just the only one," one resident posted on social media. It generated a lot of responses from locals who also witnessed the event.

    "We also saw it with my parents [at] 20:00 LT. [It was] a huge green light with a green tail of red and orange colors," one replied.

    "In Ica, it has been huge! [It was] falling toward the sea. [It was] very large and [had] various colors," another observer remarked.

    Watch Video:

    Meteor Impact Leaves Giant Crater in Africa, Creates Ejecta Blast Zone

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