MAJOR FIREBALL EVENT: Bill Cooke of NASA Meteoroid Environment Office reports that a major fireball event occurred over the southeastern USA on August 28th. The explosion was brighter than the Moon and it might have scattered meteorites on the ground. Watch the movie, then read Cooke’s full report below:
“On August 28 at 07:27 UTC (2:27 AM local time in Alabama), all six NASA all-sky cameras in the southeast picked up a very bright fireball,” he says. “Its peak magnitude was approximately -11, or six times brighter than the Last Quarter Moon. This may very well be the brightest event our network has observed in 5 years of operation.”
“The cameras were completely saturated, necessitating a manual solution of the fireball’s trajectory and orbit,” he adds. Initial results indicate that the meteoroid massed 45 kg (roughly 0.3 to 0.4 meters in diameter) and hit the top of Earth’s atmosphere traveling 23.7 km/s (53,000 mph).
Cooke is currently examining doppler radar records and other data to determine where the fall zone is located.