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Was Vancouver light show a meteor or space junk?

It wasn't a bird and it wasn't a plane. Was it a meteor?

Around 8 p.m. Saturday night a great, big ball of yellowy-white light streaked from east to west across the darkening sky.

Astronomer David Dodge said that the fireball was probably a meteor - basically a rock falling from space.

"It probably wasn't a piece of space junk. The reason why I saw that is that it was going from east to west, and 99.9 per cent of space stuff sent up there is not going east to west."

Meteor

US: Huge Green Fireball Descends From Sky

Date of Sighting: August 30, 2009
Time of Sighting: 12:50 AM PDT
Location of Sighting: Yakima, Washington

Description:

We just saw something falling from the sky in Yakima, Washington. At 12:50 AM my mom, my boyfriend and myself were outside in her front yard looking through our telescope at planets. He was bent down adjusting the lens and my mom and I were looking at the skies. All of a sudden - out of nowhere - something fell from the skies just a couple miles from us. We live in a nice neighborhood and didn't want to take off racing after it so we just stood there screaming out about how shocked we were at this sudden sighting. Normally, we would think it was a falling star except it was not white. It was on fire and it was smoking.

Meteor

Meteor Seen Along New Zealand

A fiery meteor blazed a trail through the skies on Friday morning, with sightings reported from Christchurch to Rotorua.

Zoe Battersby, out for an early walk along Jimmy Amers beach in Kaikoura at around 6.10am, said she couldn't help but notice it.

"It was very bright the size of a streetlight. It looked like it fell into the sea," she said.

Alan Gilmore, resident superintendent of the Canterbury University Mt John Observatory, said meteors entered the atmosphere over New Zealand "several times a year", but he doubted that the rock made it to the ground or water level. "This meteor is very typical, and often they burn up at about 70 kilometres up," he said.

"They are coming into a thicker atmosphere, travelling at 30km a second.

"The friction is strong and they slow up and start to break up.

"It's like throwing a stone at a concrete path."

Meteor

England: Meteor seen above Cheltenham

A church worker believes he has photographed a meteor blazing a trail above Cheltenham.

Matthew Pinless, 31, from Fairview, spotted the fast-moving object in the sky while walking along Glenfall Street in Cheltenham at about 5pm on Tuesday.

He said: "I was walking along the road with my young son and I spotted this object moving through the sky.

"At first I thought it was a plane, but then I could see it was moving too quickly for that.

Meteor

'Fiery' meteor sighted in New Zealand

A fiery meteor blazed a trail through the skies this morning, with sightings reported from Christchurch to Rotorua

Zoe Battersby was out for an early walk along Jimmy Amers beach in Kaikoura at around 6.10am when she noticed a "very large meteor".

"It was very bright - the size of a streetlight. It looked like it fell into the sea," she said.

Alan Gilmore, resident superintendent of the University of Canterbury Mt John Observatory said meteors enter the atmosphere over New Zealand "several times a year" but he doubted that the rock made it to the ground or water level.

"This meteor is very typical, and often they burn up at about 70kms up. It's very rare for them to actually land. They are coming into a thicker atmosphere, traveling at 30km a second. The friction is strong and they slow up and start to break up. It's like throwing a stone at a concrete path," he said.

Meteor

August 24th Fireball over Canada - Possible Meteorite?

Occasionally, I like to search Twitter for meteorite or meteorites. Last night, a bunch of people in Canada suddenly started talking about meteorites. A large meteor was seen - also known as a fireball or bolide.

Those of us in the meteorite hobby know that when someone says they saw a meteorite fall "nearby", it could mean almost anything - there is a common confusion between distance and angular distance. Still, with this many witnesses, it's certainly possible that something reached the ground last night.

Below, I've compiled some of the highlights from Twitter. I've used ellipsis to indicate multiple tweets from the same user.

Meteor

England: Scunthorpe - 'Fireball' spotted with parts falling off and all 'flowing' in the same direction

Posted: August 2, 2009

Date of Sighting: August 1st 2009
Time: 10pm

Witness Statement: I was stood in my garden having a fag and iI saw like a fire ball in the sky. I thought it was a plane on fire because it looked like parts of it had fallen off still on fire but they did not fall to the ground, they all flowed the same westerly direction. I believe it was any explanation.

Meteor

US: What's causing the mysterious booming sounds? No one seems to know

The cause of loud booming sounds that have shaken houses in and around Port Angeles, Washington over the past week remains a mystery.

Possible explanations range from naval exercises in the Strait of Juan de Fuca to thunderstorms in the Olympic Mountains.

The Canadian Navy confirmed that the HMCS Edmonton was conducting gunnery exercises with a .50-caliber machine gun in the Strait on Thursday -- but not any other day of the week -- from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

But that wouldn't explain why people, such as Marie Barclay of Port Angeles, had her house shaken by loud booms Tuesday and Wednesday.

"It was pretty loud, like a sonic boom," she said.

"All you heard was the boom, and I didn't hear an airplane or nothing like that."

Canadian Navy spokeswoman Lt. Commander Natalie Garcia said that the gun used in Thursday's exercises would sound like a rifle and not an explosion.

The sound wouldn't shake a house on the North Olympic Peninsula, she said.

Garcia said no other Canadian naval exercises have occurred in the Strait this week.

Meteor

England: Whitchurch, Shropshire - 2 Large 'fireballs' seen, one resembling a comet without a tail

Posted: July 30, 2009

Location of Sighting: Blackpark Road, Whitchurch, Shropshire
Date of Sighting: Saturday 4th July 2009
Time: 11.20-11.30

Witness Statement: Whilst sitting in the hot tub, looking up at the stars, we both noticed a bright light, which looked similar to a large Chinese lantern, it sort of drifted across the sky in a northerly direction, it suddenly changed direction and headed south east and upwards quite quickly, the light appeared to be a ball of fire, and we watched it for about 4-5 minutes.

Meteor

England: Long Eaton, Nottingham - Multiple 'Fireballs' seen over 40 minute period

Posted: July 28, 2009

Date of Sighting: Saturday/Sunday 25th/26th July 2009
Time: 11.50pm-1.10am

Witness Statement: Saturday/Sunday 25th/26th July

After a night out we arrived back in Long Eaton & dropped my daughter at her house at about 11.50pm. She signaled to us to get out of the car and my wife & I looked to where she was pointing and saw about 4, what can only be described as fireballs traveling at a lowish altitude in a north easterly direction. They were followed by another 2. We watched them disappear from view and went to our house a couple of streets away. On the journey we saw at least 2 more of the objects. On arriving home, we got out our binoculars and after a time at about 12.15 another one came past over head. Then about 12.30 the final one? (We watched for about another 40 minutes but saw no others.)