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Fire in the Sky


Pennsylvania: Another Fireball

© jennyfire130
I was driving home from an Apple Festival this weekend when my 3 year old daughter started shouting "Look Mama, a comet!!" I looked out the window and to my amazement I saw I HUGE yellow and white ball of fire. I immediately thought that I just witnessed a airplane explode in sky. I called my husband freaking out and he said that it was probably a meteor. I was driving on a highway and unable to pull over. I was able to reach into my purse and get out my camera. By the time I was able to get a photo through my front windshield (driving 55 miles/hr and one handed LOL) the fireball had broken into 4-5 smaller pieces. I am still not sure what exactly it was ... but it was really amazing and one of the coolest things I've ever seen in the sky! I am so excited to share my photo with you! Thanks for reading :)


California Fireball

A brilliant fireball was seen over California during the early evening of November 7 at around 5:10 pm. Quite a few reports have been posted in the comments sections on this blog.

A comment posting by Rich gives a rather detailed observation of the event:
"11/07/2009 at approximately 1700hrs we were driving south form Santa Rosa on Hwy 12 and were passing through Sonoma when we noticed a large brilliant white fireball in a SSW direction. It first caught our attention at about 20 to 25deg off the horizon. Our visual on it only lasted only about 3-4 seconds then just before passing the hills in the distance it seemed to go out. There was no associated noise or sign of impact. It was just gone. There was a smoke or debris trail that we could see after the object was gone that was visible for perhaps a minute or so then it was dispersed by the wind."

Comment: Another comment on that blog reads:
Reg - November 9, 2009

On November 7, 2009 around sunset, I was driving northbound on US 101 15 miles south of Santa Maria, California. Fireball started directly north at approximately 40 degrees above the north horizon, headed vertically and burned-up (disappeared) approximately 3-5 degrees above the north horizon. Head of fireball well formed burning sphere, with long tail and sparks. At about 8 degrees above the horizon the head split into two pieces.


Possible Meteor Spotted in British Columbia Sky

People throughout British Columbia were treated to a spectacular light show Saturday after what's believed to be a meteor lit up the sky.

Stephen Dalley and his wife were driving north of Comox, on Vancouver Island, at about 7 p.m. PT.

"We were shocked ... I mean, it wasn't what you'd expect, but it was bright white, with red and green and some blue colours, with a bit of a trail behind it and it was a large fireball," he said.

"[It was] approximately what the size of the moon would have been if we were looking at the moon."


Massive Fireball Over Tokyo

Several people observed a massive meteor fireball emitting a brighter than usual flash at around 8:30 pm on the 6th of November - it was observed throughout the province. According to a statement from the Toyama Observatory, it was a "massive fireball", a rare phenomenon caused by a large mass of meteorite.

Watch the Sott web exclusive video below


California: Meteorite Sighting Startles Yolo County Residents

Leonid meteor shower
© Stephen Shaver/AFP/Getty Images
The Leonid meteor shower lights up the sky above China's Great Wall as stargazers brave the minus 20 degrees Celcius (minus 4 degrees Fahrenheit) temperature and walk up the wall with their flashlights 18 November, 2008 in Badaling
Authorities scrambled to find a downed aircraft after numerous witnesses called to report seeing a fireball plunge out of the sky, but the sightings may have been the result of something a bit more astronomical.

Yolo County emergency crews searched the area near Interstate 5 and Interstate 505 just northwest of Zamora after multiple callers reported seeing a ball of fire fall out of the sky, but found no sign of any aircraft.

An emergency dispatcher with the Federal Aviation Administration confirmed that the event is part of the annual Leonid Meteor Shower, which lasts for a couple of weeks and isn't expected to peak until November 17.


Comet Caesar - Dark Comet in 2012?

© Unknown
Comet Caesar
When considering what might cause us grief in 2012, few if any researchers consider the start of the Mayan Long Count calendar to have any importance. This is surprising, because the reason for the calendar beginning on August 11 3114BC might contain clues about 2012 itself. After all, the Mayan culture did not exist 5,000 years ago, so either they randomly chose an ancient date on a whim, or an earlier civilization was behind the calendar, and they knew something important occurred on that date.

What could happen in 3114BC, and also in 2012AD? No civilization has lasted that long, so they are unlikely to be man-made events. Any natural events that occur so infrequently on Earth are virtually impossible to predict (volcanic eruptions for example). So that leaves us with astronomical events. The astrology of the pair of dates has been well studied, so we can rule out alignments of the stars and planets. That leaves the Sun, which we barely understand today, and comets. Is there a comet with a periodicity of 5000 years, due to return in 2012? Without any evidence from 3114BC it is impossible to say. Given that we are now near the end of the Mayan 5th age, could their calendar be designed to cover five orbits of a comet? And end catastrophically in 2012?

Most people have not heard of Comet Caesar (it doesn't even have a Wikipedia entry), and hopefully this will remain so. However, if we are to suffer a terrible tragedy in 2012, it is currently my leading candidate, and the purpose of this article is to explain why.

Red Flag

'Meteorite' that landed in Latvia is a hoax, experts say

It was the student prank that apparently fell to earth after experts dismissed a meteorite crash in Latvia as an elaborate hoax today.

Dramatic video of a fireball at the bottom of an impact crater on farmland outside the town of Mazsalaca was shown all over the world, taken by a group of film students who said that they had heard the meteor strike.

But experts who examined the scene were less star-struck. Dr Ilgonis Vilks, chairman of the scientific council at the University of Latvia's Institute of Astronomy, said: "It's a fake. It's very disappointing, I was full of hope coming here, but I am certain it is not a meteorite."

Setting aside the astronomical odds of a group of film students happening to be at the ready when a meteorite hits the Earth, Dr Vilks said that several other tell-tale signs had given the game away.


Meteorite falls in northern Latvia, no one injured

© Unknown
No one was injured after a meteorite fell near a small town in northern Latvia on Sunday, local Latvian media reported.

According to media reports, the meteorite fell near a residential house on the outskirts of Mazsalaca town in the Valmiera district of Latvia, leaving a crater of some 20 meters (66 feet) in diameter and 10 meters (33 feet) deep.

A spokesperson for the Latvian State Fire and Rescue Service said that rescuers and soldiers immediately cordoned off the territory, however, it is still not clear whether it was an asteroid or a space satellite.

"The territory has been immediately cordoned off as we still do not know what fell down from the sky. According to preliminary information, it was a meteorite. However, it is possible that it was a [space] satellite or its fragment. A radioactive contamination is also possible," she said.

A witness, who saw the object falling from the sky and leaving a burning trace behind, said it was making a noise similar to the one of an aircraft flying at a low altitude.

Comment: Update: This incident appears to have been staged

'Meteorite' that landed in Latvia is a hoax, experts say


Hoax? Video footage of blazing 'meteorite' in Latvia

A fiery object struck farmland creating a large crater near a small town in northern Latvia.

No-one was injured in the incident and geologists are now studying the object, which may be a meteorite.

Locals claimed the object fell near a farmhouse on the outskirts of Mazsalaca town in the district of Valmiera last night.

It created a crater which measured 50 feet across and 16 feet deep.

A witness who claimed to have seen the incident described the 'meteorite' as making a noise similar to the one of an aircraft flying at a low altitude.

ldis Nulle, a scientist at the Latvian Environment, Geology and Meteorology Center, said there was smoke coming out of the crater when he arrived at the crash site late Sunday in the Mazsalaca region near the Estonian border.

'My first impression is that, yes, it was a meteorite,' he said. 'All the evidence suggests this when compared to pictures of real meteorite craters.'


Did a meteor make this crater in Latvia?

© Unknown
Investigators Say Radiation Levels Normal

Scientists were investigating Monday whether a large crater found in a meadow in northern Latvia had been created by meteorite. One expert said it was likely a hoax.

Experts in the Baltic country rushed to the site after reports that a metorite-like object had crashed late Sunday in the Mazsalaca region near the Estonian border.

Uldis Nulle, a scientist at the Latvian Environment, Geology and Meteorology Center, said his first impression after observing the site late Sunday was that the 27-foot (nine-meter) wide and nine foot (three-meter) deep crater had been caused by a meteorite. He said there was smoke coming out of the hole when he arrived.