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Wed, 20 Feb 2019
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Fireballs

Comet 2

Earth may be in the middle of a giant asteroid spike

Impact Craters on the Moon
© Dr. A Parker/Southwest Research Institute
Impact craters on the moon reveal that the number of asteroid impacts increased dramatically over the last 300 million years. Here, a map of all the impact craters larger than 6 miles (10 kilometers) in diameter and younger than 1 billion years old.
Like a motorcycle windshield splattering bugs on the highway, Earth's atmosphere is constantly deflecting tiny bits of extraterrestrial rock, dust and other space garbage that get in the way of our planet's 67,000-mph (107,000 km/h) joyride. Occasionally, that debris breaks through - as it did 66 million years ago, when an asteroid the size of Manhattan crashed into the Gulf of Mexico and killed the dinosaurs.

That impact was singularly catastrophic. But, according to a new study published today (Jan. 17) in the journal Science, that smashup was also just one episode in an ongoing spike of gargantuan asteroid impacts bombarding our neck of the solar system. After studying 1 billion years of asteroid craters on the Earth and moon, the study's authors found that the rate of huge asteroid impacts on Earth has nearly tripled in the past 290 million years - and nobody's sure why.

"It's perhaps fair to say it was a date with destiny for the dinosaurs," study co-author Thomas Gernon, associate professor of Earth science at the University of Southampton in the U.K., said in a statement. "Their downfall was somewhat inevitable given the surge of large space rocks colliding with Earth."

Fireball

Dozens report seeing meteor fireball over northern New England

Fireball - Stock image

Stock image
A meteor almost surely traveled across the sky over northern New England early Wednesday night, substantiated by numerous reports in the area.

At least two dozen people from Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusetts submitted fireball reports though the American Meteor Society's website.


Reports were submitted from 5:20 p.m. to 6:04 p.m., indicating the flash happened at about 5:15 p.m. Most people said it lasted for 3.5 seconds.

Here's a map of the reports filed on AMS:
AMS fireball map over NE US
© AMS

Meteor

Mystery surrounds 'massive flash and boom' over Somerset, UK

Mystery boom - stock
© Getty Images
A Somerset resident has spoken of the moment he witnessed what he described as a "massive flash and deep boom" in the sky above his home, prompting the question - what was it?

Martin Mulchinock, from Priddy, near Wells, has been left scratching his head over what the flash and boom was and is wondering whether anyone else heard or saw anything.

The flash and boom could have been seen or heard across Mendip and surrounding areas.

He said: "At approximately 9:55 pm, there was a massive flash in the night sky. A trail was visible but dissipated quickly.

"Roughly five minutes later there was a deep boom which disturbed the grouse. It was pretty dramatic.

Fireball 2

Meteor fireball reported over Cape Town, South Africa

meteor cape town south africa
A bright meteor exploded over Cape Town, South Africa around 18:05 UTC on January 16, 2019 (20:05 local time). Bright light produced by the object was followed by very loud sound and ground shaking.

The American Meteor Society has so far received 6 reports about this event. If you witnessed it, please fill out this form.

People from all over the Cape, from Hermanus to Franschhoek, Cape Town and all the way to the Swartland, have been talking about the 'massive flash of flight' that appeared suddenly in the twilight sky, The Citizen reports.

According to witnesses, this bright object was followed by a loud bang that shook the ground and rattled houses and windows.

Fireball 4

Giant fireball caught on home security cameras in Michigan

Fireball over MI
© WOODTV/Dan Klosterman
Last week, reports from states all over the Midwest started pouring in about a brilliantly bright meteor that streaked across the sky in the middle of the night.

Dan Kloosterman's home security camera in Byron Center was facing in just the right direction to catch the glorious sight at 3:10 a.m. Friday. In Plainfield Township, Christine Ford's security camera got the image from another angle.

The video verifies several reports filed with the Amercian Meteor Society of a fireball meteor that night.
AMS report
© WoodTV/AMS
According to the society, a meteor is considered a "fireball" if it is exceptionally bright, or as bright as the planet Venus, in the night sky. The video submitted to 24 Hour News 8 is exceptionally bright.

Fireball

Meteor fireball lights up night sky over Edmonton, Alberta

Fireball over Edmonton
© Fred Thornhill/Reuters
Some stargazers in the Edmonton area reported seeing a large fireball streak across the sky Thursday night.
A few Edmonton-area skywatchers reported seeing a huge fireball light up the sky above northern Alberta Thursday night.

Dozens of people took to social media to report that a meteor was spotted around 10:45 p.m. above the Edmonton skyline.

"I was looking out my balcony when I saw a bright ball of light flying through the air," wrote one witness on Reddit.

"It eventually disappeared/broke up mid flight!"

Six people from Edmonton to Crossfield, Alta., filed reports of fireball sightings to the American Meteor Society on Thursday evening.

Fireball 5

Dash cam captures meteor fireball flying over southern British Columbia

Fireball over southern BC
An Okanagan man had the video to prove that what he saw in the sky over Okanagan Lake on Monday was more than just a tall tale.

Jeremiah Hyslop was on his way home to West Kelowna just after midnight when he saw a flash of light streak across the sky.

"At the time I actually thought it was an airplane going down because it was that size and shape," Hyslop said.

When the streak of light quickly grew larger, he knew he was watching a meteor.


Fireball 2

Hundreds report seeing bright meteor fireball over East Coast, US

US East coast fireball
© SOURCE/AMERICAN METEOR SOCIETY
Fireball seen from West New York, New Jersey, on Jan. 9, 2018. The bright meteor was seen from New York down to North Carolina.
If you saw a giant ball of burning light fall toward Earth this morning along the East Coast, you're not alone.

Multiple reports of a meteor have surfaced over the course of the day Wednesday, ranging north from New York through New Jersey, Pennsylvania and south to Virginia and North Carolina.

The best available video of the burning object was captured by a camera in West New York, New Jersey.


Comment: The American Meteor Society (AMS) has received over 450 reports about a fireball seen over CT, DE, MD, MS, NC, NJ, NY, PA, SC and VA on Wednesday, January 9th 2019 around 11:34 UT.


Fireball 4

'Green flash' spotted in the skies above Nottinghamshire, UK

Fireball - stock image

Fireball (stock image)
A mystery 'green flash' was spotted over Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire on Tuesday afternoon.

Dozens of people took to social media to talk about the unidentified flying object in the sky between 4pm and 5pm.

"I've just seen a bright light streak across the sky going Northwards in Beeston," said one user on the Beeston Updated page. "It wasn't a firework or aircraft."

Debbie Pickard, of Ilkeston in Derbyshire, said she saw "three flashes of green light" as she looked out of her office window during the evening on January 8.

The 37-year-old principal added: "It was as if something shot through the houses. It did not look very high and it looked like it was travelling horizontally.

"I checked the range that drones could travel, as I heard a lot of talk about it in Beeston, which is a good few miles away, so it couldn't have been that.

Binoculars

Mysterious 'explosion' heard in southern Hertfordshire, UK

Mystery boom in Potters Bar, UK
© pbhistory.co.uk
Described by some as sounding like an "explosion", it was heard by residents in Cranborne Road, Southgate Road, Sunnybank Road, Oakmere and Little Heath, with one person claiming it even reached St Albans.

A police spokeswoman told the Welwyn Hatfield Times that they had received no official reports last night.

Some people claimed on social media that it may have been a sonic boom, but a Ministry of Defence spokesman confirmed no operations were being held in the area last night.

Members of the public also said they had spotted a cloud of smoke near Hatfield Business Park, but it is not known whether this was anything to do with the loud bang.