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Fri, 10 Jul 2020
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Fireballs

Fireball 5

Meteor fireball caught on camera over Armenia

Meteor Fireball
© CCO
Videos of the suspected meteor's fall appear to suggest that it went down somewhere in the vicinity of the Armenian town of Hrazdan.

Residents of Armenia's Kotyak province were likely in for quite a surprise on the evening of 27 May as a flying object, which Public Radio of Armenia suggests might've been a meteor, flashed across the sky.

According to the media outlet, videos of this event that started emerging online show the object falling in the vicinity of the town of Hrazdan which is located about 45 kilometers northeast of the capital Yerevan.

Fireball

Large meteor fireball explodes spectacularly over northern Turkey

Meteor fireball over northern Turkey
© YouTube/hayri teacher (screen capture)
On the evening of Wednesday 27 May, residents of northern Turkey were treated to a spectacular light show. Videos on social media show a meteor fireball streaking across the sky, before exploding in the air with a thunderous boom.

According to Turkish news website Daily Sabah a "ball of light" was observed in several provinces at around 8:30 pm local time, including Artvin, Erzurum, Sivas, Tuncel and Ardahan.

Hürriyet reports that a sound similar to thunder was heard as a result of the explosion.


Fireball 5

Caught on camera: Meteor fireball spotted in skies near Taber, Alberta

Fireball near Taber, AB
© Don Schmitz
A resident in the southern Alberta community of Taber managed to catch a spectacular sight on video late last week.

Don Schmitz sent in the video, which shows a large fireball, possibly a meteor, falling to Earth at about 1 a.m. on May 22.

He says it happened to the southwest of the community.

CTV News has reached out to experts at the Rothney Observatory for any information on the sighting.

Taber is located approximately two and a half hours southeast of Calgary.


Question

Residents in New Zealand report mystery fireball 'crashing' into river

Waipuna bridge
© BBR Contech
Waipuna bridge: did a meteorite crash land into the Tamaki River?
Several Pakuranga residents reported seeing a bright flash of light or a "fireball" above the Tamaki River in the vicinity of Waipuna Bridge at around 6:47 pm on Monday 25 May. According to some eyewitnesses, the object was alleged to have then crashed into the water.

Reports of a "bright light" and "an explosion" flooded the east Auckland grapevine page as local people recounted what they had seen. Many speculated a meteor, a rocket from nearby Rocket Lab, or even a flare was responsible.

Corinne Hill, whose property on Pakuranga Rd backs on to the river saw "A Bright orange-red (object) about the size of 3 full moons joined together. It (sic) was travelling at speed over the water till it appeared to hit the water and disappeared."

According to Hill, the object made no sound, and by the time she "went to get binoculars out" it had gone.

Ms Hill also stated the object "It appeared to grow in size as it travelled, so my initial thought was it looked like a ball of fire but then I got wondering what it was. There were cars on the bridge at the time commuting, so I was thinking one of them may have also seen it."

Police, The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), and Stardome observatory were approached for comment.

Info

Chicxulub simulations reveal trajectory of impact

Chicxulub Crater
© Gareth Collins/Imperial College London
Asymmetries of the Chicxulub crater.
The asteroid that most believe wiped out the dinosaurs struck at the deadliest possible angle, according to new analysis combining 3D numerical impact simulations and geophysical data from the site.

The 66-million-year-old Chicxulub crater in Mexico was formed by a steeply inclined impact of between 45 and 60 degrees to the horizontal, the researchers suggest, which maximised the amount of climate-changing gases thrust into the upper atmosphere.

Such a strike likely unleashed billions of tonnes of sulphur, blocking the Sun and triggering the nuclear winter that killed 75% of life on Earth.

The researchers - from Imperial College London (ICL), the University of Freiburg, Germany, and the University of Texas, US - say their models are the first fully 3D simulations to reproduce the whole dramatic event, from the initial impact to the crater formation.

Reproducing the final stage, in which the transient crater collapsed to form the final structure, allowed them to make the first comparison between 3D simulations and the present-day structure of the crater.

"Our simulations provide compelling evidence that the asteroid struck at a steep angle, perhaps 60 degrees above the horizon, and approached its target from the northeast," says ICL's Gareth Collins, lead author of a paper in the journal Nature Communications.

Comet 2

New Comet C/2020 K3 (Leonard)

CBET 4782 & MPEC 2020-K159, issued on 2020, May 25, announce the discovery of a comet (magnitude ~18) by G. J. Leonard on images taken on May 22 UT with the Catalina Sky Survey's 0.68-m Schmidt reflector. The new comet has been designated C/2020 K3 (Leonard).

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

Stacking of 20 unfiltered exposures, 55 seconds each, obtained remotely on 2020, May 23.4 from H06 (iTelescope network) through a 0.50-m f/6.8 reflector + CCD + f/4.5 focal reducer, shows that this object is a comet with a diffuse irregular coma about 15" in diameter

Our confirmation image (click here for a bigger version)
C/2020 K3 Leonard
© Remanzacco Blogspot

Camera

Was the mystery 'flaming' object spotted hurtling over Midlothian, UK a fireball?

Flaming object over Midlothian, UK
© Briege Reynolds
Locals in Midlothian were left puzzled after spotting a mystery object hurtling through the sky and trailing smoke in its wake - so, we asked the experts what it was.

Videos and pictures emerged showing what witnesses described as a "flaming" object falling from the skies over Midlothian last week, on Thursday night.

Gorebridge resident, Briege Reynolds, initially thought it was a crashing helicopter but believes it wasn't an aircraft at all.

Speaking to Edinburgh Live previously, she said: "I was actually feeding my dogs in the kitchen and the back door was open when I saw it, so I just pulled out my phone to video it.

"I thought it was something crashing, like a helicopter, but it didn't look like a helicopter. It looked like a half-circle, kind of like a capsule. There was a trail of orange smoke, and then there was no smoke, and it seemed to be spiralling down."


Alarm Clock

Mystery over loud boom heard along East Kent, UK coast

Mystery boom (stock)
The cause of a loud and mysterious bang heard along the East Kent coast last night still has not been confirmed.

Reports on Facebook site Deal Watch claim the explosion-type sound was heard across parts of Walmer, Deal, Sholden and Sandwich at about 9pm.

Some said it was like a ship's distress flare while others describe it as like thunder, a firework, a car tyre bursting or a sonic boom.

Walmer resident Rachel Jones said: "I heard several different theories - a tyre blown on Dover Road, fireworks, gas bottle explosion, Defence testing... no one seems to know for definite though, but someone confirmed it wasn't the lifeboat.

Fireball 2

Bright meteor fireball illuminates night sky over Spokane, Washington state

Spokane meteor fireball
© Courtesy
Stills show a flash of light believed to be a meteor or space debris passing over the sky in Spokane Thursday night.
A bright flash of light caught on many Spokane security cameras Thursday night was likely a small meteor or fireball, area astronomers say.

The flashes of light, seen by many locals and captured on many dash and front-door cameras, occurred just before midnight Thursday. Videos posted on the American Meteor Society's website show it disappearing after a few seconds.

David Syphers, an astronomy professor at Eastern Washington University, said Thursday night's meteor was not something area astronomers could predict because it was likely never a part of a comet.

Meteor showers are created when Earth passes through the path of a comet and debris is caught in the earth's gravity field and enters the atmosphere. The next meteor shower, called the Perseids, will occur from mid July to late August, according to NASA's website. It occurs when the Earth passes through leftover particles from the Swift-Tuttle comet.

When a single meteor falls, it is usually either man-made debris from space, such as a satellite, or rock and ice from an asteroid.


Comment: Earlier this month another meteor fireball was filmed over Washington state. It produced a "huge boom that shook the house," according to one witness.


Info

Active object in Jupiter's orbit is first of its kind seen by astronomers

asteroid 2019LD2
© JD Armstrong/IfA/LCOGT
Image of asteroid 2019LD2 taken on June 11th, 2019, using the Las Cumbres Observatory Global Telescope (LCOGT) NetworkÊ »s 1.0-meter telescope at Cerro Tololo, Chile.
We often think of asteroids and comets as distinct types of small bodies, but astronomers have discovered an increasing number of "crossovers." These objects initially appear to be asteroids, and later develop activity, such as tails, that are typical of comets.

Now, the University of Hawaiʻi's Asteroid Terrestrial-impact Last Alert System (ATLAS) has discovered the first known Jupiter Trojan asteroid to have sprouted a comet-like tail. ATLAS is a NASA-funded project using wide-field telescopes to rapidly scan the sky for asteroids that might pose an impact threat to Earth. But by searching most of the sky every two nights, ATLAS often finds other kinds of objects - objects that aren't dangerous, but are very interesting.

Early in June 2019, ATLAS reported what seemed to be a faint asteroid near the orbit of Jupiter. The Minor Planet Center designated the new discovery as 2019 LD2. Inspection of ATLAS images taken on June 10 by collaborators Alan Fitzsimmons and David Young at Queen's University Belfast revealed its probable cometary nature. Follow-up observations by the University of Hawaiʻi's J.D. Armstrong and his student Sidney Moss on June 11 and 13 using the Las Cumbres Observatory (LCO) global telescope network confirmed the cometary nature of this body.

Later, in July 2019, new ATLAS images caught 2019 LD2 again - now truly looking like a comet, with a faint tail made of dust or gas. The asteroid passed behind the Sun and was not observable from the Earth in late 2019 and early 2020, but upon its reappearance in the night sky in April of 2020, routine ATLAS observations confirmed that it still looks like a comet. These observations showed that 2019 LD2 has probably been continuously active for almost a year.