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Tue, 10 Dec 2019
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Fireball

NASA turned blind eye to car-sized asteroid that exploded over Caribbean

asteroid
© NASA . JPL-Caltech
The agency said that it has detected and flagged bigger asteroids than the one in question. It has also confirmed that it was sure the space rock would do no harm as it wouldn't survive entry into the atmosphere.

NASA has detected but not taken measures against an asteroid that entered the Earth's atmosphere and exploded over the Caribbean.

The space agency admitted in a statement that the rock, measuring about 5 meters in size and designated 2019 MO, was first spotted when it was about 500,000 kilometres from Earth, just before it hit the atmosphere.

"This was roughly the equivalent of spotting something the size of a gnat from a distance of 310 miles (500 kilometres)," NASA said.

Comment: See also: Meteorites, Asteroids, and Comets: Damages, Disasters, Injuries, Deaths, and Very Close Calls


Meteor

Bright flash of light, loud boom filmed in Acworth, Georgia

Flash and boom in Acworth, GA
© YouTube/AMS/M. Nixon
On August 30, 2019, a bright flash of light and loud boom from an exploding meteor was recorded on a home surveillance camera in Acworth, Georgia. The footage was uploaded to the American Meteor Society by M. Nixon.


Camcorder

Meteor fireball caught on home surveillance camera over Nutley, New Jersey

Fireball over Nutley, NJ
© YouTube/AMS Meteors/S. Petronio
On September 3, 2019, S. Petronio uploaded footage to the American Meteor Society's website of a fireball as it flew over Nutley, New Jersey:


Comment: A loud boom attributed to an exploding meteor was heard just the day before in the New York area.

American Meteor Society: Loud boom heard in central New York caused by meteor


Meteor

American Meteor Society: Loud boom heard in central New York caused by meteor

Daytime meteor - stock
© ABC News
Stock photo
People living in Oswego, Madison and Onondaga counties reported hearing a loud 'boom' just after 5 p.m. on Monday that, in some cases, shook their homes.

Robert Lunsford of the American Meteor Society says a fireball, which was larger and brighter than typical meteors, entered the Earth's atmosphere over Lake Ontario. It also caused a loud sound.

"Fireballs that are larger than normal and manage to penetrate down to the lower atmosphere will produce a sonic boom. The folks that did report some sound, they happen to be pretty close to the track of this object," Lunsford said.


Question

What was that loud boom heard in northern York County, Pennsylvania?

Loud boom in York County PA
© Getty Images (stock photo)
Was it an earthquake?

York County 911 received several calls late Friday night about a loud boom in the northern end of the county, according to a dispatcher. One of the calls came around 10:50 p.m. from the area of Siddonsburg Road and Glen Arden Drive in Fairview Township.

Emergency responders in both York and Cumberland counties responded to check it out, but no one found anything, said Chris Weidenhammer, deputy fire chief for the Fairview Township Fire Department. Those that went out included Fairview, Monaghan and Lower Allen townships.

The Fairview Township Fire Department posted on its Facebook page that officials even checked a pipeline but nothing was found.

No earthquakes were recorded. "It's a great mystery," Weidenhammer said.

Fireball

Bright meteor fireball streaks over Edmonton, Canada

Rain wasn't the only thing falling in our city this evening, social media was flooded with reports of a sighting of what appears to be a meteor over Edmonton.
Blazing Meteor
© Pete Saloutos

Comment: More views from social media:



The American Meteor Society (AMS) received 106 reports about the meteor fireball, which was seen over Alberta, MT and Saskatchewan on Sunday, September 1st 2019 around 04:28 UT.

"This fireball would have been seen for 600km from either side of it, probably," said Mike Hankey, operations manager for the American Meteor Society, who speculated that the object was likely a bolide, a very bright meteor, based on the reports he has received.

The meteor spectrum ranges from meteor, to fireball, to bolide and super bolide, which is brighter than the Moon and almost as bright as the Sun.


Attention

Loud flat-shaking 'explosion' panics residents of Glasgow, Scotland

Mysterious boom in Glasgow, Scotland
© Visit Scotland
Glasgow residents were shook last night as many reported hearing a loud explosion in the north of the city.

A large number flocked to social media to tell of the loud "bang" at around 3am. Panic set in as worried locals frantically tried to find out exactly what had happened.

It is still unclear what caused the bang, and the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service only have record of a refuse fire in the area.

After being woken through the night, social media users in the north of Glasgow speculated over the "explosion."

Fireball

Meteor fireball lights up western sky in Washington and British Columbia

Meteor fireball (stock)
© Ikonacolor/Getty Images (file photo)
This is only the second time in my life that I've seen a meteor flash this bright in the night sky. And I was in the right place, at the right time, looking in the right direction.

Walking home from work Thursday night around midnight in Spokane, Washington (because my car had a flat tire of all things), I saw the astronomical spectacle sometimes known as a "fireball," flash across part of the western sky low to the ground. It only lasted about three seconds. No time to take a picture, but I did tweet about the experience a minute later.

I wasn't the only one either. Several from Washington and British Columbia also saw the meteor fly across the sky.


Compass

Thunderous mystery boom rattles central Maryland

Mystery boom in MD
© Screenshot via Nest Cam
Dozens of ear-witnesses in College Park, Greenbelt and Berwyn Heights, including this journalist, reported hearing a loud, explosion-like boom in the early-morning hours of Sunday, Aug. 18, 2019. The noise rattled residents, who took to social media to report their experiences. As of Sunday evening, no definitive cause for the noise has been disclosed by local officials.

This journalist was drinking on his balcony near the intersection of 49th Avenue and Tecumseh Road in College Park when he heard the mystery boom at around 1:45 a.m. Aug. 19. The sound appeared to emanate from the south, in the direction of the University of Maryland campus and College Park's Route 1 corridor. The sound was not accompanied by a flash of light, such as from lightning.

Shortly afterwards, other residents took to social media to describe the sound. One Berwyn Heights resident uploaded a security camera video recording of the boom. In the video, a, sudden, loud, thunderous report is heard, followed shortly afterwards by smaller percussive reports and rolling echos. [The boom can be heard starting at 0:19]


Comment: According to Meteorites Australia, sounds associated with a falling meteor include a "thunderous" noise.
Sounds Associated with Witnessed Meteorite Falls

Occasionally when a meteorite is witnessed to find its way to Earth, it will present a very impressive visual show as it burns through the atmosphere. Even less common though, are the occasions when witnesses are able to actually hear audible sounds associated with the falling meteor. These have been described in many various ways such as: whistling, popping, booming, thunderous, whizzing, whirling, whirring, crackling, drumming, rumbling, humming, roaring and more.



Fireball

Bright meteor fireball reported over north Alabama

Fireball over N Alabama
© Jason Carnegie
Jason Carnegie submitted this photo from Moores Mill in Huntsville, Alabama at 9:40 pm Sunday.
Did you notice a bright flash of light around 9:30pm Sunday night? If so, you may have spotted a fireball!

The American Meteor Society notes that more than 60 eyewitnesses reported the fireball in numerous states, including Virginia, North Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, and Alabama. Eyewitnesses report the fireball was visible for roughly 1.5 - 3.5 seconds.

Additional information and reports are forthcoming regarding Sunday night's fireball. However, many across the Tennessee Valley spotted the bright feature in the sky.

The American Meteor Society defines a fireball as a meteor that shines brighter than the planet Venus.