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Thu, 18 Jul 2019
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Fireball 2

Meteor fireball spotted over parts of New York State [VIDEO]

Did you see it?

Did you see it?
The American Meteor Society is reporting that a meteor was spotted over parts of New York, Connecticut, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania Tuesday morning at around 2:35 a.m.

As of now, there are eighty seven reports on the AMS website about the fireball, which can be seen streaking across the sky in the video above.

Fireball 3

HUGE meteor exploded over Russia's Far East in December last year - Blast was 10 times more powerful than Hiroshima

Fireball over Kamchatka peninsula in December went largely unnoticed at the time
meteor baring strait
© MODIS-Terra / Cropped by Giorgio Savini ‏@UCLOAstroSphinx
The atmospheric explosion (bottom right) and debris trail left by the exploding meteor over the Bering Strait in December 2018
A meteor explosion over the Bering Sea late last year unleashed 10 times as much energy as the atomic bomb that destroyed Hiroshima, scientists have revealed.

The fireball tore across the sky off Russia's Kamchatka peninsula on 18 December and released energy equivalent to 173 kilotons of TNT. It was the largest air blast since another meteor hurtled into the atmosphere over Chelyabinsk, in Russia's south-west, six years ago, and the second largest in the past 30 years.

Unlike the Chelyabinsk meteor, which was captured on CCTV, mobile phones and car dashboard cameras, the December arrival from outer space went largely unnoticed at the time because it exploded in such a remote location.

Comment: Raindrops keep falling on our heads...

Fireball 4

Meteor fireball falls in Russia's territory

Meteor over Krasnoyarsk Territory
© REUTERS/Ilya Naymushin
A truck drives along the M54 federal highway on the bank of the Us river in the Western Sayan mountains in Krasnoyarsk region, Russia, November 4, 2016.
An eyewitness filmed a glowing falling object on his car DVR in the night sky, near the village of Tura in the north of Russia's Krasnoyarsk Territory.

Earlier, the Yenisei TV channel published a dashcam video, which showed a falling luminous body. It is reported that the incident occurred on Friday evening near the village of Tura.


YDB team publishes evidence from Chile for global climate cataclysm

YDB World Map
© Cosmic Tusk
The main objective of this study was to test the YDB impact hypothesis by analyzing a wide range of data from the Pilauco site in southern Chile. The following conclusions show that our data and interpretations are consistent with the YDB impact hypothesis and we found no evidence that refutes the hypothesis.

(1) At Pilauco, ~12,800-year-old peaks in high-temperature Pt-rich and native-Fe spherules are comparable to similar impact-related evidence found at more than 50 YDB sites in North America, Europe, and western Asia. It appears that the YDB layer at Pilauco is coeval with similar layers found at these sites on several continents and is also possibly related to the proposed YDB impact event.

(2) Identification of the YDB layer at Pilauco greatly expands the proposed YDB proxy feld ~6,000 km farther south of the closest well-studied YDB site in Venezuela, and ~12,000 km south of the northernmost YDB site in Canada, a distance equaling ~30% of Earth's circumference.

(3) Cr-rich spherules are found in the YDB layer at Pilauco, but not found at the ~50 other sites on four continents, suggesting that one or more local impacts/airbursts occurred in the Cr-rich basaltic terrain
circa Pilauco.

Fireball 2

Search begins for meteorite that fell on desert in Abu Dhabi, UAE - UPDATE: Second meteor fireball spotted in ONE week

UAE meteor fireball
© Abu Dhabi Astronomy Centre
The meteorite came through the Earth's atmosphere as a fireball.
Astronomers are searching for the remains of a fireball that fell from the sky into the Abu Dhabi desert.

The meteorite is believed to have landed south of Al Wathba after being captured on camera by Abu Dhabi's Astronomy Centre.

Meteorites can contain grains of stardust older than our solar system and hold information about its formation and the geological history of the Earth, Moon and stars.

But it will not be easy to find the remains of last Tuesday's fireball, thought to be a meteorite of one to three centimetres in diameter and weighing between two and 10 grams.

Abu Dhabi astronomers narrowed down the landing site to a desert area of about 15 square kilometres in the south-east of the emirate.


Update: The Khaleej Times on 13th March reports:
Another bright fireball, the second in a week, was spotted in UAE skies late Tuesday night (March 12) at around 11:50pm, local time.

This is actually the second fireball to be spotted in the UAE skies in one week, after the first one appeared on Tuesday night, March 5, at exactly 7:40:11, according to a senior official.

Eng Mohammed Shawkat, Director of the International Astronomy Centre Abu Dhabi, told Khaleej Times that investigations and calculations are underway to identify the route, altitude, speed, and expected location of the new meteor.

"The Centre has received many calls from eye witnesses who affirmed that they did see that bright fireball in the UAE sky late on Tuesday night."

This is actually the third meteor to be spotted in the UAE skies since the Centre was founded in 2016, he pointed out.

"The first super bright fireball was recorded on October 1, 2016, the second on March 5, and this is the third on March 12."

The new meteor, as was the case with last week's fireball, has been recorded by a special network of astronomical cameras, he added.

"These sophisticated cameras have been installed by the International Astronomy Centre at different parts of the country, and these are managed in collaboration with the US space agency NASA."

The network consists of several stations, each having 16 astronomical cameras pointed at the sky at all times, he elaborated.

"These automatically record any meteor(s) that appears in the sky, sending high definition clips to the station they are connected to, which are instantly transferred to the main center in Abu Dhabi."

Possible parts of burnt meteor located

Meanwhile, a team of experts from the Centre have managed to locate possible parts of the burnt meteor that fell in the UAE desert last week, Eng Shawkat exclusively told Khaleej Times.

"A team of four groups have been dispatched to the expected site of the meteor that fell on Tuesday."

Each and every group, equipped with special scan and search gadgets, was assigned to excessively search a particular area, he added.

"The 3.5-hour-long search, from 2:30pm to 6pm, ended in finding two possible samples; the first was a dark rock, while the second was a rock mixed with rusted iron."

On the spot tests showed some magnetic traits of the second sample, he explained.

"The experts at the centre immediately contacted NASA and shared the pictures of the samples collected."

The second sample of rust iron rock is mostly of an old meteor, he underlined.

"However, the Centre experts are to move to the second stage - and lab test the sample to identify its content and nature."

The first super bright fireball has been video recorded by two astronomical cameras; one fitted at the Ramah station, and one at the Al Wajan station, Eng Shawkat stated.

"Based on these calculations, the meteor was found to have been orbiting at a distance of 384 million km off the sun."

"The meteor was travelling at a speed of 67,000 kmph when it entered the Earth's atmosphere."

The object started burning at an altitude of 93km from the Earth's surface between UAE's Al Qooa and Umm Al Zamul areas, he pointed out.

"It then flew to the northwest when the fire came to an end at an altitude of 35km close to Razeen area."

Eng Shwkat added that the meteor might not have entirely got burnt. "Parts of the meteor, mostly 2 to 10gm, have most likely reached the UAE desert, close to the Arabian Nights Village Resort."

Fireball 5

Impressive meteor fireball reported over SW France

SW France meteor AMS observers map
© AMS (screen capture)
AMS observers map - Event 1061-2019
The American Meteor Society (AMS) received 64 reports about a meteor fireball seen over Catalunya, Nouvelle-Aquitaine and Occitanie on Wednesday, March 6th 2019 around 20:58 UT.

Many of these reports describe an impressive phenomenon according to actu.fr. A resident of Lot-et-Garonne explains having observed a "meteoroid", "brilliant" , "sparkling" and so "close" that she had the impression that it was going to crash around her house .

"This is the first time I see a phenomenon as long and as big, I thought a plane on fire," said a resident from Tarn-et-Garonne. Another one even reported "a big boom" on the side of Tarbes.

On Twitter too, people wondered what they saw.


Colossal asteroid will approach Earth on Friday, but we'll be fine

Giant asteroid
NASA is always keeping an eye on space rocks that get anywhere near Earth, and 2019 has been a relatively calm year in terms of close passes. A recently discovered asteroid is going to make a not-super-close pass of Earth later this week, and while it doesn't pose much of a threat to our planet it's worth mentioning simply because of its size.

The rock, known as 2019 DN, is slated to arrive at its closest point to Earth this coming Friday, March 8th. At its nearest distance the asteroid will still be around 13 lunar distances away. One lunar distance is equal to the space between the Earth and our Moon, so it's clear the asteroid has little chance of disrupting Earth during its flyby, and that's a very good thing considering its size.


6th mass extinction and the 'Shiva hypothesis'

Imapct Event
© Live Science
A total of five mass extinctions occurred during the last 500 million history of the planet earth, when more than 75 per cent of existing life forms had gone extinct. Various causes have been ascribed for each of the five mass extinctions.

The most recent, 5th mass extinction took place about 66 million years ago, when a huge meteorite with a radius of about 10 km crashed on the earth and made a crater with 180 km diameter and 20 km deep in the Yucatan village, Chicxulubin Mexico. The impact created a doomsday scenario.

Superheated dust particles and steam filled the sky preventing sunlight to reach earth for decades killing plant life as they could not carry out photosynthesis. Many volcanoes around the earth became active and spewed lava. There were super-tsunamis drowning land animals and plants. The atmosphere of earth became unsuitable to support most of the existing life forms, leading to the extinction of dinosaurs.

Can the 6th mass extinction occur in a similar manner and all of us would disappear before we figure out what hit us? Michael Rampino and Bruce Haggerty (1984) proposed the 'Shiva hypothesis' (named after Lord Shiva, the Hindu God of destruction) based on an earlier paper of Napier and Clube (1979). According to this hypothesis, the earth experiences large impact events with comets every 30 million years when solar system crosses the plane of Milky Way galaxy. This causes gravitational disturbances in the cloud of comets (Oort cloud) surrounding the solar system and sends some of them hurling towards the inner solar system. These may be propelled to collide with the earth by the 'sling shot' gravitational action of Jupiter (NASA's Voyager-1 and 2 used this effect to escape Sun's gravity).

Modelling studies suggest that an object of 1 km size, depending upon its speed and angle of approach is enough to wipe out the humanity according to Rampino, who gave the 'Shiva hypothesis.' This could throw up enough pulverised rock to block the sun for months. The debris falling back on earth would cause wild fires increasing the surface temperature and killing everything living to death. The earth will then go through a process of cooling and a prolonged winter possibly creating new forms of life millions of years later.

Fireball 5

Asteroid much harder to destroy than previously thought

Impact Event
Past modelling for the effect of asteroid collisions has underestimated the force needed to bring about total destruction.
Asteroids are much harder to destroy than previously thought, new modelling shows.

The research, published in the journal Icarus, shows that an asteroid damaged in a collision - by another asteroid, for instance, or a nuclear missile fired at it in the blind hope that doing so will prevent it from smacking into the planet with catastrophic consequences - will substantially reconstruct itself because of the strong gravitational pull of its still-intact core.

The modelling, funded by NASA, substantially updates and contradicts earlier research that showed that a collision between a small asteroid and a large one would completely demolish the latter, the destruction facilitated by the rapid transit of cracks right through it.

The new study, conducted by Charles El Mir and KT Ramesh, of Johns Hopkins University, US, and Derek Richardson, of the University of Maryland, US, applies more fine-grain analysis and arrives at a distinctly different conclusion.

At issue, fundamentally, is the way rocks react to energetic impacts. This process is well understood at what can be called "laboratory scale", wherein real-world and simulated experiments use rocks roughly the size of a human fist.

But asteroids of a magnitude big enough to worry NASA scientists - or tempt would-be space-miners - are considerably larger than that. They might, indeed, be roughly the size of Berlin.

Fireball 2

Two previously unknown massive impact craters discovered

Impact Crater
Hiding in plain sight: Morgan Cox (right) collecting breccia samples at the Yallalie impact site.
Researchers have discovered two previously unknown massive craters on Earth, the most recent estimated to have been produced by an impact only 800,000 years ago.

The craters - one in Western Australia and the other in Nicaragua - are revealed in a pair of papers published in the journal Meteoritics and Planetary Science.

In one sense, the Australian crater, in a location known as Yallalie, about 200 kilometres north of the state capital, Perth, has long been hiding in plain sight.

Buried deep beneath the surface, it was first tentatively identified as an impact site in 1992, after its discovery two years earlier during oil drilling exploration.

Subsequent studies of the 12-kilometre-wide circular formation, which also features a raised central structure three kilometres wide, identified it as the result of several meteorite impacts.