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Fireballs

Fireball 4

Extremely large meteor lights up skies over Finland, booms heard

Finland Fireball
© Aki Taavitsainen
The fireball was captured by a photographer in Mikkeli, eastern Finland.
An unusual light and sound phenomenon that was sighted in Finnish skies in early May has been confirmed as a fireball, in other words a very bright meteor. The light was seen on May 8th in parts of southern and central Finland.

The Ursa Astronomical Association confirmed that a bright light and loud boom seen and heard by almost 300 Finnish citizens on May 8th was a meteor. The space rock was estimated to be about half a metre long and weighing 50 kilos.

Fireball 4

Alberta couple's retirement project shakes up debate about ancient impact from space

Impact Event
© Getty, YDB Research Group
There's new evidence of a comet impact 13,000 years ago.
Some retirees golf. Some dream of buying a boat and sailing the world. Anton and Maria Chobot spent 30 years of their retirement digging up artifacts of the Clovis culture on their property near Buck Lake, Alberta, and now, they may have provided some of the evidence needed to settle a long debate in the science community.

Roughly 13,000 years ago, something touched off the 'Big Freeze' - a 1,300-year-long cold snap formally called the Younger Dryas stadial - that caused major climate changes and droughts.

These have been blamed for the extinction of the mammoth and the saber-toothed tiger, and also the downfall of the ancient Clovis culture. However, what that something was has been debated for years.

One idea that's proven popular over the years is that a meteorite or comet struck the planet, somewhere around what is now Hudson Bay. However, if something big enough to melt the Laurentide ice sheet had hit the planet there should have been some indication of it, in the form of a crater, or shocked and melted rocks, or 'impact spherules'. And, until recently, the evidence was lacking.

Fireball 3

Trajectory modelled for fireball that exploded over Southern Finland with supersonic boom, 8 May 2013

Image
© Kuva Ursa / Mikko Suominen / Celestia
Estimated trajectory of today's overhead explosion in Finland
Translated by SOTT.net reader Seppo Ilmarinen

The flight route of the bright fireball that flew over Southern Finland on Wednesday 8th of May has been modelled. Esko Lyytinen, mathematician of URSA astronomical association and member of URSA Finnish Fireball Working Group, estimated that about 5kg of the fireball ended up on the earth's surface, in the southern part of Huittinen. There were over 300 sightings of the fireball reported in the URSA database.

The exact flight route estimation was based on the meteor camera pictures of URSA Finnish Fireball Working Group. Photographers of the fireball route were Johan Linden in Turku and Aki Taavitsainen in Mikkeli.

The cause of the fireball light phenomena was a meteoroid that passed through the atmosphere. Based on the simulation, the mass of the meteoroid was about 50 kilograms, and it's diameter was about 30 centimeters. It arrived in the atmosphere at a 43 degree angle.

The speed of the object was about 23 kilometers per second when it arrived the atmosphere. It ignited into a glowing fireball near Mynämäki at the height of 60 kilometers, from where it travelled into north-east. After crossing Lake Pyhäjärvi, the fireball flamed out northeast of Säkylä, at an altitude of about 23 kilometers.

Comment: Ah, the normalcy bias: "Earth has always been impacted by hundreds of tonnes of small objects from space, so the spectacular fireballs phenomenon everyone the world over has noticed in the past few years has always been so, except that now, people suddenly notice them more..."

Does that sound credible to you?

Note the casual remark at the very end, after giving us 'the dry facts' about fireballs:
"...and the supersonic explosion it caused."
Say what?!

That is rare! Well, it was rare. It's more normal now! But only because something wicked this way comes...




Fireball 2

Bright fireball seen streaking over southern Ontario

Meteor
© Wikimedia Commons
This particularly bright Leonid meteor was captured in November of 2009.
Some sky watchers out to view the grouping of Mercury, Venus and Jupiter got an extra treat on Sunday night as a particularly bright meteor - called a bolide - zipped through the skies a little after 9 p.m. local time.

Glimpses of the bolide were reported from Maryland in the U.S., to Ajax, Ontario as it burned up in the atmosphere. People reporting the event on American Meteor Society website called it one of the "brightest fireballs [they'd] ever seen" with a wide, bright flame trail.

'Fireball' is the name given to a meteor that appears to be brighter than Venus - one of the brightest planets in our sky, and a 'bolide' is a fireball that burns so bright that it can outshine the full moon. While spotting a fireball is rare, the meteors that cause them aren't; according to the AMS, several thousand occur in Earth's atmosphere each day.

Fireball 5

Meteorite hits car in Quebec, 21 May 2013

In the following excerpt from radio-canada.ca TV news, a man describes his car windshield being smacked by a small dark meteorite on May 21, 2013.


Source [From 10'30"]

Fireball 2

Fireball fragments over Arkansas, 16 May 2013, Second fireball turns night into day from Gulf of Mexico to Great Lakes, 18 May 2013

Image
© LunarMeteoriteHunter / Google Earth
Initial Meteor Sighting Reports

18 May 2013 - Tristen Dixon Vilonia, AR 22:45:00
5 seconds duration. I faced east, it went from south to north. Green/white color and very bright.
18 May 2013 - J.B., Augusta, Arkansas, USA 22:40:00
Approx 4 seconds duration. S-N direction. Bright blue and green with white flashes. Bright as the moon, flashes as bright as the sun, like lightning. Small pieces like sparks. Could swear I heard a distant jet-like noise which may have been an actual jet but it did directly coincide with the meteor, so... ????
18 May 2013 - Michael Schoelzel, Mascoutah, IL, 22:40 cst
I saw the last 2 seconds. It started east and traveled west. I was looking south. Super brilliant white & green. Super bright! Fragmentation, looked like it disintegrated with green fragments as it was breaking apart. Probably second most amazing thing I've seen, right after last week's observation, interestingly in the same area of the sky from my point of view. Simply breathtaking! Something is really not right here, I've been fascinated with the sky all my life, but only in recent years, or better yet months, have I ever witnessed such wild activity, thank you for the interest, I feel better now having reported it!

Fireball 3

Three days after comet fragment appears in sky for 40 minutes, multicoloured fireball explodes above Australian Sunshine Coast

Image
Initial Meteor Sighting Reports

23 May 2013 - Andrew, Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia, 19:35 AUST EST
2 to 3 seconds duration. I was facing NW, it came from SE and was heading NW. It appeared at 1 o'clock in the sky and everything disappeared at about 10 o'clock in the sky. Multicoloured! First greens and blues, then orange and a faint but noticeable boom about a minute later. It was very bright, although the moon was nearly full in the eastern sky. There was fragmentation into about 4 or 5 smaller chunks as well as what looked like the usual 'sparks' but only in the last 1 second. This is the first time I've heard a boom accompany a fireball. This one was very large and I have witnessed many large ones - a couple during daytime - but this one is definitely the best and biggest so far!
23 May 2013 - Luke K Moggil, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia, approximately 19:30hrs
3 seconds duration. E-W, right to left, I was facing north. Blue trails followed scattering chucks, then an orange flame explosion. As bright as Venus. Multiple fragments trailed behind main body. It looked pretty amazing, with a very short-lived but colourful explosion.
23 May 2013 - Corbet Tamborine, QLD, Australia, 27.9°S, 153.1°E 19:35 GMT+10 (AUST EST)
2 - 3 seconds duration. Starting about 45 degrees above northern horizon, travelling to the north. White color, very bright, but not as bright as the nearly full moon. It was a single fireball with a tail.

Comment: Comet fragment wows stargazers with celestial maneuvers over Australia's Sunshine Coast, 20 May 2013


Fireball 3

Spectacular fireball blazes long trail over Northern Canada, 23 May 2013

Image
© LunarMeteoriteHunter / Google Earth
23 May 2013 - Diane Rourke, Boissevain, Manitoba, Canada 11:53 pm central
15 seconds duration. From west to northeast. Fireball with yellowish white color. Very bright and lasted a long time, amazing!
23 May 2013 - Charity Woods, Grandview, Manitoba, 23:50
At least 20 seconds duration. I lost sight of it becuse of trees in the way. It appeared to be going from west to east. I was facing west. White color. No sound. It looked like a huge ball of fire. I thought a plane was going down. It was brighter than the moon, and it's a full moon tonight! It looked huge and amazing!
23 May 2013 - C.K., Yorkton, Saskatchewan, Canada 22:50
30 seconds duration in clear sky. WOW! SW to NE travel. Orange with long tail. Bright and large, best meteor we've ever seen! Very bright orange fireball with sparks coming from the tail. Best ever stellar event!

Fireball 2

Yet another bright fireball lights up Eastern Seaboard, 27 May 2013

Image
© LunarMeteoriteHunter / Google Earth

Initial Meteor Sighting Reports


27 May 2013 - Christos Koutentis, Manhattan, NY 00:07, Eastern Standard Time
3 seconds duration. Travelling West. Blue / turquoise color. Brighter than Venus. No fragmentation. South of Manhattan. Apartment window facing south-west.
27 May 2013 - Mike Kelly, Bordentown, NJ, 00:10 EST
5 seconds duration. East to west direction?? Blue and white color. Very bright streak. Awesome, fast and beautiful.

Fireball 3

Bright fireball fragments over Northeastern U.S., 26 May 2013

Image
© LunarMeteoriteHunter / Google Earth
Initial Meteor Reports

26 May 2013 - Jane Meyerhofer, Leesburg, VA. 21:00
5 seconds duration. East to west direction. Green/white color. Brighter than Venus. Broke into several pieces. Smaller than the moon but way bigger than a planet.
26 May 2013 - Alexander Eichenlaub, Bellefonte, PA 21:03
3 seconds duration. SE-NW direction. Pink/purple color along with a 'pop' sound. Same brightness as Venus. Fragmented into three pieces at the end of its trail. There were four witnesses. Not sure if the popping sound is related.