Welcome to Sott.net
Sun, 19 Feb 2017
The World for People who Think

Fire in the Sky


Valentine's Day meteor fireball spotted over Eastern US

© Chris Wolf/AMS
AMS Event#614-2017 – screeenshot of a video shared by Chris Wolf on the AMS Website.
53 reports from Pennsylvania, Connecticut, New Jersey, New York and Maryland

The AMS has received 63 reports so far about of a fireball event over seen over Pennsylvania on Tuesday, February 14th 2017 around 08:32pm EST (Feb 15th - 01:39 UT.). The fireball was seen primarily from Pennsylvania but witnesses from Connecticut, New Jersey, New York, and Maryland also reported the event. Some witnesses described the meteor as orange, yellow and white. After a fairly extensive investigation, we came to the conclusion that it wasn't Cupidon but a bright meteor.

First Estimated Trajectory

The map below shows the witnesses location with the first estimated trajectory. The preliminary estimated trajectory plotted from the witness reports shows the meteor was traveling from the West to the East and ended its flight somewhere over Scranton, PA.


Mystery object (possibly a meteorite) lands in UK garden after loud thump in middle of night

© Bury Times
This mysterious rock like object is causing quite a stir in Lowercroft.

Now the couple in whose garden it was found are hoping someone may be able to shed some light on what it is — and where it came from.

Pauline and Norman Pollard were baffled to discover the striking black and yellow material in their garden, just days after hearing a loud noise.

Initially the couple thought it may be a meteorite - and don't know whether the noise is related to the find.

Mr Pollard, who lives in Lowercroft Road, aged 74, said: "We found it in the garden after we had heard a loud bang or thump in the middle of the night, it was like a car door banging."

Fireball 4

Bright green meteor fireball illuminates skies over Wisconsin and Illinois

© American Meteor Society
AMS Event#454-2017 – Caught on a Police Dashcam (Lisle, IL PD)
Over 170 reports from IL, WI, MI, IN, OH, IA, NY, Ontario, KY and MN

The AMS has received over 170 reports so far (and counting...) about of a fireball event over seen over Wisconsin on Wednesday, February 6th 2017 around 01:27CST (07:31 UT.). The green fireball was seen primarily from Illinois and Wisconsin but witnesses from Michigan, Indiana, Ohio, Iowa, New York, Kentucky, Minessota and Ontario (Canada) also reported the event.

Fireball 5

Bright meteor fireball captured over Caeté, Minas Gerais, Brazil

© Via Twitter@Rainmaker1973
Bright fireball captured over Caeté, Minas Gerais, Brazil on January 30, 2017.

Fireball 2

Asteroid attack? Yet another asteroid to give Earth a close shave

Space rock block party!
For the fourth time since the start of 2017, a small celestial body will pass closer to Earth than the distance between us and the moon. Recently discovered asteroid 2017 BS32 zips by around midday Thursday.

This latest narrow shave comes just a few days after the closest such flyby in months, prompting observers and some astronomers to wonder if the apparent blitz of tiny planetoids could be more than mere coincidence.

According to astronomer Paul Cox at the Slooh observatory, the apparent bursts of small, close-approaching asteroids were first spotted just before buzzing us initially sparked discussion in 2016.

"One possibility sprang to mind -- that these clusters of smaller asteroids making close approaches to Earth over relatively short periods of time were in fact the fragments from larger asteroids that had broken up," Cox said via email. "However, when we reviewed the orbits of each of the asteroids, we found no correlation between them -- showing clearly they weren't associated in any way."

Cox said the scientists also looked for a connection to seasonal changes or to weather at observatories that might reduce discoveries of nearby asteroids, but there was no conclusive data to be found.


Close encounter! Asteroid discovered yesterday whizzed 70,000 km from Earth

The near-Earth asteroid 2017 BH30 was discovered by the Catalina Sky Survey in Arizona (USA) on 29 January 2017 and announced later the same day by the Minor Planet Center: it was going to have a very close encounter with the Earth, at 0.18 lunar distances (about 70.000 km).

At Virtual Telescope Project we captured 2017 BH30 while it was safely approaching us. Above is an image coming from the average of two 60-seconds exposures, remotely taken with "Elena" (PlaneWave 17″+Paramount ME+SBIG STL-6303E robotic unit) available at Virtual Telescope. The robotic mount tracked the fast (36″/minute) apparent motion of the asteroid, so stars are trailing. The asteroid is perfectly tracked: it is the sharp dot in the center, marked with two white segments.

To get these impressive results, the Paramount ME robotic mount tracked using the ephemerides retrieved via the JPL's Horizon webserver. At the imaging time, asteroid 2017 BH30 was at about 500.000 km from us and safely approaching. Its diameter should be around 5-10 meters or so.

The observations provided by the Virtual Telescope Project were published by the Minor Planet Center on its electronic circular MPEC 2017-B121.

Asteroid 2017 BH30 safely reached its minimum distance of about 70.000 km from us on 30 Jan. 2017 at 04:51 UT.

Over the years, our capability to detect small asteroids improved quite a lot, hence the apparently higher numbers of close approaches we see these days.

Comment: That would depend on how soon you want to detect them.

Forget About Global Warming: We're One Step From Extinction!

Fireball 3

Meteor fireball observed across 11 southern U.S. states

If you saw a bright flash in the sky around 6:16 a.m., it wasn't lightning. It was a short trail, exploding fireball that lasted around three seconds.

Check out this still image captured by ArkansasSky.com near Greenbrier, Arkansas. They caught a big flash on their camera in the lower part of the sky between 20 and 30 degrees above the horizon.

There were several sightings in Collierville and scattered reports from Louisville, KY to Austin, TX. Check out the map to see all the sightings as of 9:30 a.m.

Comment: The American Meteor Society (AMS) received 120 reports about a fireball seen over AR, TN, TX, MO, OK, KY, KS, IL, NE, LA and MS on Monday, January 30th 2017 around 12:13 UT.

© AMS (screen capture)


Meteor fireball spotted over Leeds, UK

© Yorkshire Evening Post
The meteor over Allerton Bywater.
Is this a meteor in the skies over Leeds?

Kelly Moss snapped the burning light hovering over Brigshaw High School in Allerton Bywater at around 4.30pm on Wednesday, as dusk was falling.

A meteor, often called a shooting star, is the visible passage of a glowing meteoroid, micrometeoroid, comet or asteroid through Earth's atmosphere, after being heated to incandescence by collisions with air molecules in the upper atmosphere, creating a streak of light via its rapid motion and sometimes also by shedding glowing material in its wake.

Fireball 5

Security camera captures meteor fireball lighting up the sky in Huntersville, North Carolina

© Via YouTube/rungoiron
Not sure what my security cam captured last night, but maybe there is a cute alien living in my neighbors backyard now! Huntersville, NC.

Comment: Another view from a dashcam in Watuga County, North Carolina:


Mysterious boom rattles San Diego residents

© 7 San Diego
Several people across San Diego County reported hearing a loud, mysterious boom Tuesday afternoon.

An NBC 7 viewer told us, around 3:18 p.m., she heard two loud booms that shook the windows in her home in Santee.

There were multiple posts on social media of people reporting their homes rattled from the boom. The posts were from residents across the county, including Clairemont, Santee, and San Diego.

Some wrote that they suspected the sounds were caused by a sonic boom, but NBC 7 has not confirmed that.

Comment: Fox News San Diego reports two large "bangs" were heard. Residents also reported a car moving back and forth and a "large glowing ball in the western sky".