Texas Fireball recorded - 04 Aug'06... Aug 5, 2006 11:26:54 GMT -6
Post by Chicago Astronomer Joe on Aug 5, 2006 11:26:54 GMT -6
Fireball Over Texas 'Turned Night Into Day'
Hundreds of residents who witnessed the bright light in the sky called police and media, KNBC-TV reported.
A bright light that bolted across the sky Tuesday night and was caught on camera has left many Texans scartching their heads.
A Lakeway police cruiser dash cam recorded the site shortly after 11:00 P.M.. The streak caught the attention of hundreds of residents who called police and the local media to see what was going on.
Astronomers said the light was either a meteor fireball or space junk entering the atmosphere, according to the report. Another report: An amateur astronomer said it was a meteor fireball, and not space junk re-entering the earth's atmosphere.
This is a better report:
It only lasted a few seconds. A bright light was seen streaking across the sky late Tuesday night, has lots of Central Texans talking.
The fireball that was seen streaking across the Texas sky Tuesday night was captured on a Lakeway PD dashcam.
As soon as the Central Texas skies lit up, the phone lines in the KXAN newsroom lit up as well. Inquisitive minds from the Hill Country to Buda wanted to know just one thing, 'What was it?'
Ed Cannon is an amateur astronomer, who showed us his chronograph, still set at 11:05:09 p.m., the exact time the light flashed across the sky.
"I knew it was fireball, a meteor fireball, but it gave me an adrenaline rush it was so bright," Cannon said.
Cannon is convinced it was a meteor fireball, and not space junk reentering the Earth's atmosphere -- even though a Web site that tracks orbiting space junk shows a Russian Cosmos booster passed over Central Texas at nearly the identical time.
"Normally a reentering space junk object would take a minute or two to cross a large portion of the sky, where as a natural fireballs are fast, four seconds, five, even ten seconds is probably a natural fireball," Cannon said.
It probably lasted only a few seconds, but witnesses say it was bright enough to light up the ground. Some saw the object split into pieces.
I wonder if this is part of the Perseid leading edge, or just an independant renegade?
Too bad that most of the local news reports don't credit the astronomers with their opinions, but instead note the slackjawed citizens that say the most moronic statements, (which I have edited out). KXAN mentions the amateur astronomer in their report...excellent!...