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Tue, 20 Oct 2020
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Fireballs

Fireball

Meteor fireball seen streaking across the sky in Natchez, Mississippi

FIREBALL
For one Natchez resident, a late-night trip out of his house turned into an otherworldly experience when he spotted a bright orange fireball streak across the sky.

"It scared the heck out of me," Alex Sandel said Monday morning. "It was bright orange, red and spinning."

Living near Merit Health Natchez, Sandel said he has stepped outside to watch a helicopter take off from the hospital's helipad Sunday evening at approximately 10:15 when he was startled by the fireball streaking across the sky.


Cassiopaea

Stargazer captures intriguing meteor fireball explosion over Oregon

Fireball over OR
© Wade Earl
An amateur stargazer was lucky enough to spot the exact moment a fireball hit the sky, discharging a fantastic bright aura. Wade Earl from Oregon captured a meteorite explosion during the Lyrid meteor shower.

The image, taken on April 21, 2020, was sent to the IMO (the International Meteor Organization) and AMS (the American Meteor Society) displays the meteor seemingly shattering twice as it reaches the atmosphere, meaning that Earl captured a double bursting fireball. In the image, we can spot the "W" of Cassiopeia lying to the lower right of the fireball.

Various space objects, such as comets or asteroids, produce a bright explosion of fore when they reach the sky. Air flows into cracks and pores of the rock, dragging apart and causing it to burst. Fireballs, on the other hand, are meteors that might be brighter than anything else ever seen.

Meteorite Explosion Lit Up the Sky over Oregon

Due to their speed at which they touch the Earth's atmosphere, fragments bigger than one millimeter can produce a bright light as they streak through the sky. These bright meteors are also dubbed fireballs, and they sometimes strike awe or fear for those who spot them.

Meteor

Woman spots 'ball of fire' streaking across sky over her garden in Liverpool, UK

Fireball over Liverpool
© Lottie Blake
A woman was startled to see a "ball of fire" streaking across the sky over her back garden.

Lottie Blake, 30, had just finished having dinner with her sister, yesterday evening, when she went into the kitchen to make a cup of tea.

However, as she was putting the kettle on she said she noticed something out of the window overlooking her back garden.

Lottie, from Whiston, told the Echo : "It was yesterday evening at about 8.00pm.

"We had just had our dinner so I went to the kitchen to make everyone a cuppa when I saw something out of the window.


Fireball 5

Video captures exploding meteor fireball over Washington state

Puget Sound meteor
© YouTube/Bioluminous Commercial Photography (screen capture)
An apparent exploding meteor made for an incredible sight... and sound across parts of the Puget Sound region in Washington state Wednesday evening.

Several reports into the American Meteor Society indicated a brilliant white and colorful object streaked across the skies around 7 p.m. or so, culminating in a flash and then after a few minutes' delay, a massive explosion.

"Huge boom that shook the house," reported one witness in Brier. "It was the loudest boom I've ever heard."

A video from Scott Story with Bioluminous.com shows the streak as seen from a home surveillance camera, followed by the explosion about three minutes later:


Comment: Just over one week ago another meteor fireball was spotted across several Washington State counties with boom-like sounds reported.


Comet 2

New Comet C/2020 J1 (SONEAR)

CBET 4769 & MPEC 2020-J37, issued on 2020, May 04, announce the discovery of a comet (magnitude ~17) on images taken with a 0.28-m f/2.2 astrograph of the "Southern Observatory for Near Earth Research" (SONEAR) at Oliveira, Brazil, on May 1 . The new comet has been designated C/2020 J1 (SONEAR).

We performed follow-up measurements of this object while it was still on the PCCP webpage.

Stacking of 8 unfiltered exposures, 90 seconds each, obtained remotely on 2020, May 04.3 from X02 (Telescope Live, Chile) through a 0.6-m f/6.5 astrograph + CCD, shows that this object is a comet with a compact coma about 5" in diameter.

Our confirmation image (click here for a bigger version)
Comet C/2020 J1 SONEAR
© Remanzacco Blogspot

Fireball 2

Truly spectacular meteor fireball breaks apart over northern Spain and Portugal

fireball
Residents of Portugal spotted a bright fiery object streaking across the sky over the country. Based on reports by eyewitnesses, it seems a small asteroid entered Earth's atmosphere and turned into a meteor fireball over Portugal.

Details of the incident were reported by the American Meteor Society (AMS). According to the organization, the fireball incident was spotted by eyewitnesses from the states of Lisboa and Setubal.

According to the eyewitness reports, the fireball event occurred on April 28 at 4:47 a.m. UT or around 12:47 a.m. EDT. The reports indicated that the fireball had a magnitude or general brightness that ranged from -6 to -17, which means it was much brighter than the planet Venus when viewed from Earth.


Comment: It was also seen from northern Spain:



Not one week later, this meteor fireball was caught on camera above Spain's Costa del Sol.


Fireball

Meteor fireball caught on camera above Spain's Costa del Sol

fireball
The phenomenon occurred when a rock from an asteroid entered the Earth's atmosphere and could be seen from Andalucia, Extremadura and Castilla la-Mancha.

Detectors from the SMART project, part of the astronomical observatories in Huelva, Sevilla and La Hita (Toledo) have registered the passage of a fireball over Spain at 82,000 kilometres per hour, which has been seen from Andalucia, Extremadura and Castilla-La Mancha .


Comet 2

New Comet C/2020 H6 (ATLAS)

CBET 4768 & MPEC 2020-J23, issued on 2020, May 03, announce the discovery of a comet (magnitude ~18.5) on individual images from taken on Apr. 22 UT with a 0.5-m f/2 Schmidt reflector at Haleakala, Hawaii, in the course of the "Asteroid Terrestrial-Impact Last Alert System" (ATLAS) search program. The new comet has been designated C/2020 H6 (ATLAS).

We performed follow-up measurements of this object while it was still on the PCCP webpage.

Stacking of 10 unfiltered exposures, 120 seconds each, obtained remotely on 2020, April 28.4 from Q62 (iTelescope network) through a 0.50-m f/6.8 astrograph + CCD + focal reducer, shows that this object is a comet with a compact coma about 10" in diameter slightly elongated toward PA 330.

Our confirmation image (click on it for a bigger version)
C/2020 H6 ATLAS
© Remanzacco Blogspot

Meteor

Early morning loud boom wakes residents in Hereford, UK

Mystery boom (stock)
© myjournalcourier.com
People across Hereford were awoken by a loud bang in the early hours of this morning.

Described as 'a huge boom', and 'like a cannon', the sudden noise was heard all over the city, from Kings Acre Road to Hampton Dene, at around 2.45am.

Many have taken to social media to question what they heard, with suggestions ranging from fireworks to thunder.

Natalie in Belmont said: "It wasn't a gun shot, it was a deep bang, so much so that the first thing I did was look at the news."

Catherine Street resident Robin Hart said: "This is at least the second time we have been woken by this bang.

Info

Infectious disease modeling study casts doubt on the Justinianic Plague's impact

Justinianic Plague’s Impact
© SESYNC
Annapolis, MD — Many have claimed the Justinianic Plague (c. 541-750 CE) killed half of the population of Roman Empire. Now, historical research and mathematical modeling challenge the death rate and severity of this first plague pandemic.

Researchers Lauren White, PhD and Lee Mordechai, PhD, of the University of Maryland's National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center, examined the impacts of the Justinianic Plague with mathematical modeling. Using modern plague research as their basis, the two developed novel mathematical models to re-examine primary sources from the time of the Justinianic Plague outbreak. From the modeling, they found that it was unlikely that any transmission route of the plague would have had both the mortality rate and duration described in the primary sources. Their findings appear in a paper titled "Modeling the Justinianic Plague: Comparing hypothesized transmission routes" in PLOS ONE.

"This is the first time, to our knowledge, that a robust mathematical modeling approach has been used to investigate the Justinianic Plague," said lead author Lauren White, PhD, a quantitative disease ecologist and postdoctoral fellow at SESYNC. "Given that there is very little quantitative information in the primary sources for the Justinianic Plague, this was an exciting opportunity to think creatively about how we could combine present-day knowledge of plague's etiology with descriptions from the historical texts."

White and Mordechai focused their efforts on the city of Constantinople, capital of the Roman Empire, which had a comparatively well-described outbreak in 542 CE. Some primary sources claim plague killed up to 300,000 people in the city, which had a population of some 500,000 people at the time. Other sources suggest the plague killed half the empire's population. Until recently, many scholars accepted this image of mass death. By comparing bubonic, pneumonic, and combined transmission routes, the authors showed that no single transmission route precisely mimicked the outbreak dynamics described in these primary sources.