Skip to comments.COLORADO SUPERBOLIDE (huge meteor lights up sky! -caught on video)
Posted on 12/07/2008 8:02:17 AM PST by ETL
COLORADO SUPERBOLIDE: Last night, Dec. 6th at 1:06 a.m. MST, a meteor of stunning brightness lit up the skies of Colorado. Astronomer Chris Peterson photographed the event using a dedicated all-sky meteor camera in the town of Guffey, near Colorado Springs:
"In seven years of operation, this is the brightest fireball I've ever recorded," says Peterson. "I estimate the terminal explosion at magnitude -18, more than 100 times brighter than a full Moon."
Fireballs this bright belong to a rare category of meteors called superbolides. They are caused by small asteroids measuring a few to 10 meters in diameter and massing hundreds of metric tons. Superbolides trigger seismic detectors on the ground, produce waves of infrasound that can travel thousands of miles, and they are tracked by military satellites scanning Earth for nuclear explosions. Recent examples include the El Paso fireball of 1997 and the Slovenian Superbolide of 2007.
Last night's fireball is on the low end of the superbolide scale. Nevertheless, it was still a beauty and likely peppered the ground with meteorites when it exploded. Sighting reports are welcomed; they could help guide the tracking and recovery of debris.
LISTEN! 250 miles south of the fireball, radio astronomer Thomas Ashcraft of New Mexico photographed the flash and recorded radio echoes from the superbolide's ion trail. Click here to listen [see link below].
Spaceweather.com for Sunday, December 7, 2008:
Wow, would I like to find one of those babies!
Save us Obama! The sky is falling!!
Am I wrong for dreaming for just one split second that one of these things would plow through the Capitol bldg with Congress in session?
I HEAR you!
Talk about a gift from above!
Astronomy and astrophysics ping! Thanks.
I can’t think of a more worthy use of a good meteor! LOL
"The Colorado fireball comes shortly after a similar event over Canada on November 20th, where over two dozen meteorite fragments have been recovered from agricultural land. We wait in anticipation to see if this huge Colorado fireball produced any similar fragments, but eyewitness accounts will be critical to aid such a search..."
Yes you are wrong. Make it Congress, Senate, & supreme court in attendance at the inaugeration and make it a 1/2 kilometer rock that would wipe out DC. Sorry all you innocent DC residents. The cause is so great that your sacrifice is warranted. There’s probably only like three of you anyway.
In my backyard; WOW
You should go out in your yard and check for meteor fragments. They are easily distinguishable from ordinary rocks because they give off a mysterious green glow and 'beep' softly when placed close to the ear.
We had one here in NW Wa state and it made a series of booms as it entered the atmosphere. I heard a lot of calls on the scanner of people calling in saying they heard shots or thinking some was trying to break down their front door. They were really that loud! Oh, and cool photo!
So is this the “normal” frequency for fireballs, or is it a swarm? Predicted? Totally a surprise? Part of the Leonid and Geminid meteor showers that arrive this time of year?
I missed it. Very cool, though. Being up here and in the mountains with no lights the stars, satellites, and sky works are incredible. It’s one reason I love spending the night in the mountains.
They’re coming to get us ho, ho. They’re coming to ....Boom!
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