Large meteor fireball explodes over Andalusia, Spain
© YouTube/Meteors (screen capture)
The YouTube channel Meteors has uploaded a video of a large meteor fireball exploding over Andalusia, Spain on January 29.

(Translated by google)

A rock from an asteroid has entered sharply into the Earth's atmosphere at 0:08 am on January 29, generating a brilliant fireball that has been seen from more than 400 kilometers away. In fact, its luminosity has been greater than that of the full moon. The phenomenon has been able to be recorded by the detectors that the Southwest Europe Meteor and Winds Network operates in different parts of Andalusia.

Specifically, images have been obtained from the observatories of Calar Alto (Almería), La Sagra (Granada) and Seville. These detectors work within the framework of the SMART Project, which aims to continuously monitor the sky in order to record and study the impact against the earth's atmosphere of rocks from different objects in the Solar System.

Several witnesses, especially from the provinces of Seville, Cádiz and Huelva, have contacted this Research Network informing about the sighting of this fireball. The event has been analyzed by the researcher responsible for the SMART Project, the astrophysicist José María Madiedo of the Institute of Astrophysics of Andalusia (IAA-CSIC). This analysis has allowed to determine that the rock that originated this phenomenon entered the atmosphere at about 61 thousand kilometers per hour over the north of the province of Cádiz.

This enormous speed caused the rock to become incandescent, thus generating a bright ball of fire at an altitude of about 91 kilometers. The fireball advanced northeastward towards the province of Seville and became extinct when it was at an altitude of about 20 kilometers, almost on the vertical of the town of Arahal.

Normally these rocks are completely destroyed in the atmosphere. However, the preliminary analysis of this event indicates that in this case a small part of the material would have survived its abrupt passage through the Earth's atmosphere and would have reached the ground in the form of a meteorite. Additional analyzes are currently being carried out to determine what mass the meteorite would have.