Saturday, 10 September 2016

Fireball over North Carolina.

The American Meteor Society has received reports of a bright fireball meteor being seen over parts of the southeast of North America slightly after 6.00 pm local time (slightly after 11.00 pm GMT) on Thursday 8 September 2016. The fireball was seen across most of North Carolina, as well as parts of Virginai and South Carolina. The object appeared to be moving from northeast to southwest, and ended its journey somewhere around Enfield, North Carolina (a fireball typically disappears when the meteor causing it explodes in an airburt caused by fricion of its surface with the atmosphere; this typically happens several km in the air, with fragments of the rock faling to the ground as meteorites, though they can drift some distance from where the fireball was last seen before reaching the ground). A fireball is defined as a meteor (shooting star) brighter than the planet Venus. These are typically caused by pieces of rock burning up in the atmosphere, but can be the result of man-made space-junk burning up on re-entry.

 Dashcam image of the 8 September 2016 North Carolina fireball from I-95. Pedro Martinez/American Meteor Society.

Objects of this size probably enter the Earth's atmosphere several times a year, though unless they do so over populated areas they are unlikely to be noticed. They are officially described as fireballs if they produce a light brighter than the planet Venus. It is possible that this object will have produced meteorites that reached the surface (an object visible in the sky is a meteor, a rock that falls from the sky and can be physically held and examined is a meteorite).

Witness reports can help astronomers to understand these events. If you witnessed this fireball you can report it to the American Meteor Society here.

See also...

http://sciencythoughts.blogspot.co.uk/2016/09/fireball-over-oregon.htmlFireball over Oregon.                                   The American Meteor Society has received reports of a bright fireball meteor being seen over much of the northwest of North America at about 11.55 pm local time on Friday 2 September  2016 (about 6.55 am on Saturday 3 September GMT). The fireball was...
http://sciencythoughts.blogspot.co.uk/2016/08/the-perseid-meteors.htmlThe Perseid Meteors.                                     The Perseid Meteor shower lasts from late July to early September each year, and are expected to be at a peak on Thursday 11- Friday12 August 2016. The Moon is expected to be quite bright on that night, however it will be setting at about 1.00 am local...
http://sciencythoughts.blogspot.co.uk/2016/06/fireball-over-arizona.htmlFireball over Arizona.                                   The American Meteor Society has received reports of a bright fireball meteor being seen over much of the southwest United States at about 4.00 am local time on Thursday 2 June 2016 (about 11.00 am GMT). The fireball was seen across Arizona, Utah, New...
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