Was this a fireball? Should we start a trial run of the FIREBALL48 Meteor Investigation Network? Any takers?
Chris Peterson wrote:That is a contrail, catching the Sun (which has set at ground level). Note the second contrail as a jet comes in from the right- with exactly the same color. A handful of videos like this show up every year. It is definitely not a fireball.
Well coming home from work 2:43am this morning, I noticed what I thought was police helicopter light making shadows of the over head sign-age dance on the interstate I looked up for the helicopter only to see a bright bolide meteor streaking across the sky with greens and purple colors coming from the east to west about 47 deg long.
About 10 degs after it crossed zenith the meteor broke up into smaller fragments and each smaller fragment continued to break apart leaving what looked like the trails of a spent firework. Awesome site to see.
RJN wrote:Is this a real fireball?
The visible light produced by a meteor may take on various hues, depending on the chemical composition of the meteoroid, and its speed through the atmosphere. As layers of the meteoroid are stripped off and ionized, the color of the light emitted may change according to the layering of minerals. Some of the possible colors and the compounds responsible for them are:orange/yellow (sodium);
blue/green (copper, nickel);
purple (potassium); and
red (silicate, cinnamon)
<<The Ferrara Pan Candy Company is a Chicago and Forest Park, Illinois, based candy company that makes a variety of popular candies. Their popular confections include Lemonheads, Jaw busters ("The Original Jaw Breakers"), Atomic Fireballs, Chewy Fireballs, Original Boston Baked Beans, Grapeheads (formerly Alexander the Grape), Apple Heads, Punch Heads, Orange Heads, Cherry Heads, Chewy Lemon Heads & Friends, Tropical Chewy Lemon Heads & Friends and Red Hots. According to the Ferrara Pan Candy Company website, the company was founded in 1908 by Salvatore Ferrara, Salvatore Buffardi and Anello Pagano. The company is located on the outskirts of Chicago at 7301 W. Harrison St., Forest Park, Illinois. It continues to be owned by the Ferrara, Buffardi, and Pagano families. Originally, Ferrara Pan developed and sold sugar-coated almonds or confetti as they are called in Italy.
Finnegans Wake 6.18Shize? I should shee! Macool, Macool, orra whyi deed ye diie?
of a trying thirstay mournin? Sobs they sighdid at Fillagain's
chrissormiss wake, all the hoolivans of the nation, prostrated in
their consternation and their duodisimally profusive plethora of
ululation. There was plumbs and grumes and cheriffs and citherers
and raiders and cinemen too. And the all gianed in with the
shoutmost shoviality. Agog and magog and the round of them agrog.
To the continuation of that celebration until Hanandhunigan's
Atomic Fireballs (known as Atomic FireBlast in the UK) are a round, cinnamon-flavored hard candy invented by Nello Ferrara in 1954. They are a form of jawbreaker. The outer layers of the candy are a bright red color while the interior layers are white.
When initially introduced by Ferrara Pan, the company had a manufacturing capacity of 200 cases per day but demand quickly rose to 50,000 cases per day. According to the company, approximately 15 million Fireballs are eaten weekly. "The spicy flavor and the exceptionally long lasting candy was instantly popular (coupled with the popular culture obsession with all things atomic at the time). The outside layer of the Fireball is quite mild. After a moment in the mouth, the smooth ball of hard candy releases an intense spicy cinnamon flavor. Capsaicin is the ingredient found in the Atomic Fireball that causes the burning sensation.
They are made with the hot panned process with ingredients of a single grain of sugar, syrup and flavor. The hot pans tumble the ingredients around until the fireballs snowball into the appropriate size. The process lasts for about two weeks. By the end of the process the fireball consists of at least one hundred layers. The fireballs come in two sizes, a pea size and the more popular full-size (7/8ths of an inch in diameter) which comes individually wrapped.
Also available are chewy fireballs, with the same flavor of the original with a chewy texture.>>
bystander wrote:Reports of a Bright Meteor over Southwestern US
Universe Today | Fraser Cain | 2011 Sept 15
bystander wrote:Meteorite Alert! Remote Cameras Capture Slow-Moving Fireball near Toronto
Universe Today | Nancy Atkinson | 2011 Dec 14
Twitter is all abuzz with sightings of a huge fireball meteor that streaked across the skies Friday night at approximately 22:00 UTC. There are reports from Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Central England.
Twitter just exploded with reports, pictures, and videos of an extremely bright fireball moving over the northern part of the UK at around 22:00 UTC. I’ve seen tweets from folks in Ireland, Manchester, and more. It was traveling east-to-west, and broke up into many pieces as it fell. No reports of it hitting the ground yet, though some pieces may fall all the way down.
http://www.itv.com/news/central/2012-09 ... -midlands/ wrote:
Fireballs light up sky across Midlands
by Lisa Hartle - last updated Sat 22 Sep 2012
<<Police were inundated with reports of "fireballs in the sky" last night as a large meteor lit up the sky across the Midlands.
Many people mistook the meteor for aircraft or something more sinister and contacted the police reporting fireballs or 'suspicious lights in the sky'.
One eye witness in Great Barr said she saw a large ball of light trail across the sky for around 6 seconds as she looked out of the window at 11.00pm last night (Friday 21 September):
I thought it was three planes flying behind one another to begin with, but then thought it had too many lights, I said aloud to myself "what is that, what is that?" It never occurred to me it could be a meteor because I'd never seen one before, it just looked like a large lump of fire with smaller ones trailing behind. – Jean Davis
amazingly bright and weird fireball seen moving across the skies of northern UK last week.
Marco Langbroek is a paleolithic archaeologist in Amsterdam, and also an amateur satellite tracker – though with modern tech, the term "amateur" is arguable. Anyway, he’s been looking at the track and velocity of the meteor using eyewitness accounts (and the video taken), and thinks he can rule out the cause being the re-entry of human-made debris from a spacecraft. In fact, he thinks the meteoroid (the term for the actual object responsible for the light show) was an Aten asteroid: part of a class of rocks that orbit the Sun on paths that tend to keep them inside Earth’s orbit*.
The key issues here are the slow speed it moved across the sky, and the fact it moved east-to-west. That last part is really important: very few satellites orbit retrograde, or in that direction. Most orbit either prograde – west-to-east, the same direction the Earth spins and also the same direction it orbits the Sun – or in polar orbits (north/south). So right away that makes it unlikely the meteor was from a spacecraft.
However, what has me scratching my head is the slow speed of the meteor. A rock orbiting the Sun retrograde means its velocity will add to the Earth’s, making it move faster as it burns up, not slower. It’s like two cars in a head-on collision; if each is moving 100 km/hr then the resulting collision speed is 200 km/hr relative to either car. You get slower relative collisions if they’re moving in the same direction; they’ll merely bump at low speed relative to one another.
We see this with meteors; the Leonid meteor shower, for example, is made up of tiny particles that move almost in the opposite direction of the Earth, and when they burn up in our atmosphere they move extremely rapidly across the sky. The collision speeds can be 70 kilometers per second!
So why was this meteor over the UK moving so slowly if it were an Aten? Marco thinks he has the answer to that. If the asteroid happened to be at aphelion – the top of its orbit, when it’s farthest from the Sun, also when moving most slowly and in a direction nearly parallel with that of the Earth – it would all add up. The backwards direction and the slow motion would be a natural consequence of this.
I’ll note that as far as I have thought about this, I agree with Marco. It’s not conclusive yet, though, but it’s compelling.
Meteors like this are rare. One that gets this bright, is seen by so many people, and drops bits of itself as it burns up are rare enough (the Peekskill meteor in 1992 is the best example of this), but one moving retrograde is even weirder. If Marco is right then I hope even more people submit their observations, pictures, and videos to the International Meteor Organization website. Those observations can help scientists determine the orbit of the object more accurately, and help pin down exactly what the heck this crazy object was.
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