Fire in the Sky

Fireball 2

Meteor fireball strikes the Earth somewhere in Humboldt County, California?

© Gail Zanetti
The fireball's smoke trail.
Wednesday, Nov. 18 was a typical morning at Pacific Union School's early morning daycare program, when just before 7:15 a.m., Gail Zanotti heard an excited five-year-old exclaim that "a fireball just went over my head!"

Curious, she went outside to take a look, and it turned out to be more than just a little boy's vivid imagination. A fresh smoke trail from a possible meteorite was clearly visible to the east. Zanotti grabbed her cell phone and started taking pictures.

"I ran outside, and I snap snap snap the trail, but didn't see the fireball," Zanotti recalls.

Nor did she directly observe any impact, as the object landed out of view. Still, she's certain something struck the ground; she's just not sure where.

"It threw up a big cloud of dust," she said. "Was it up past Kneeland, or where was that?"

She then noticed a second set of north-to-south smoke trails in a different location, apparently from more objects headed southbound.

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Fireball 2

Bright meteor fireball passes over Dublin, Ireland

This footage captured by amateur astronomer Michael O'Connell was posted on youtube last night, 'Bright fireball (possible Leonid) passed directly over Dublin and visible across the UK & Ireland'.

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Incoming! Earth-grazing fireball lights up New Mexico sky

© Thomas Ashcraft
A comet fragment skimming Earth’s atmosphere was visible from New Mexico and Colorado on Tuesday evening.
An 8-inch fragment of a comet blazed orange across the sky at 62,000 miles per hour around nightfall Tuesday in a spectacle that was visible just south of Santa Fe.

Lamy astronomer Thomas Ashcraft captured the event on his Sentinel camera on loan from Sandia National Laboratories.

Ashcraft said the Meteoroid Environment Office at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala., confirmed that the 5:47 p.m. event was the result of a rare Taurid earth-grazer that was about as bright as the first-quarter moon.

"Earth-grazers enter earth's atmosphere at a very shallow angle and skim along the top of the atmosphere. Some actually skim and then re-enter space," Ashcraft wrote in an email. "This fireball was visible for eleven seconds and burned brightly its entire path of at least 180 miles. This means it had some mass to it to be able to burn that long."

Earth-grazers are not rare, but brighter ones, such as Tuesday's fireball, are special, Ashcraft said. "I'm not sure of the last time but I can tell you that a fireball of this size is not a common event over one location," he said. "That it was a long path earth-grazer makes it much more special."

Fireball 2

Huge meteor fireball explodes across four states in the US

© hooeetube
Huge Fireball Meteor Caught on Security Camera somewhere in Midwest and Southern US 19/11/2015

Residents of four US states - Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, and Tennessee - have anxiously reported a loud blast. Their first suggestion was a meteor, but more frightening versions followed.

Some said, though, that they saw the actual meteor, and in some pictures, one can see a bright flash of light in the sky.

Comment: This youtube video shows a huge fireball meteor caught on Cincinnati resident Steve Hart's home security camera on 19/11/2015.

Fireball 2

Fireball falls behind TV reporter during liveshot in Oklahoma City

A fireball fell behind Ariana Garza during her live report on Monday night.

Comment: Global map of locations where fireballs have been seen so far in 2015:


'Explody' Taurid meteor fireballs filmed in Deadfall Basin, California

© Brad Goldpaint
A bright Taurid meteor falls over Deadfall Basin, near the base of Mount Eddy in California.
"The landscape was just at the verge of trying to silently explode with vibrant colors of red, gold and oranges," said photographer Brad Goldpaint as he described the autumn view during his hike to Deadfall Basin in California to set up his cameras to try and capture a few Taurid meteors.

But the landscape wasn't the only thing about to explode.

Later that night Brad captured a few "exploding" meteors that produced what are called persistent trains: what remains of a meteor fireball in the upper atmosphere as winds twist and swirl the expanding debris.

Brad created a time-lapse video from the event and slowed down the footage to highlight the trains.


Blazing meteor fireball photographed from Swiss Alps

© Ivo Scheggia
What's happening to that meteor? A few days ago, a bright fireball was photographed from the Alps mountain range in Switzerland as it blazed across the sky.

The fireball, likely from the Taurids meteor shower, was notable not only for how bright it was, but for the rare orange light it created that lingered for several minutes. Initially, the orange glow made it seem like the meteor trail was on fire. However, the orange glow, known as a persistent train, originated neither from fire nor sunlight-reflecting smoke. Rather, the persistent train's glow emanated from atoms in the Earth's atmosphere in the path of the meteor — atoms that had an electron knocked away and emit light during reacquisition.

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Meteor fireball disintegrates over Sri Lanka - November 13, 2015

© Astronomy Center
The International Astronomical Center (IAC) and the United Arab Emirates Space Agency hosted a team of veteran U.S. and German observers of spacecraft re-entries to study the re-entry of an approximately 1-meter piece of space debris near Sri Lanka on 13 November 2015. The reentry was seen in one of the videos between 06:18:34 and 06:18:41 UT.


Meteor fireball filmed over Winnipeg, Canada

Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada Fireball 1625 Local 13NOV2015

Posted to YouTube by Larry Gundrum 3 views

Thank you Larry Gundrum for the email and video!

Congratulations on your video capture.


Timelapse film of aurora and fireball in the night sky at Ballintoy, Northern Ireland

© Martin McKenna
Taurid fireball & Aurora - Nov 6th
Night Sky Hunter Martin McKenna filmed this stunning night sky time lapse of aurora, Taurid fireball and stars at Ballintoy church and harbour. Credit: Martin McKenna

Comment: See also the following report (which happened on the 8th November whereas the one above was recorded on the 6th).

Huge fireball seen all over Ireland