A bright green fireball illuminated the sky over Illinois and Wisconsin at 07:25 UTC (01:25 CST) on February 6, 2017. It was captured by numerous cameras.
The American Meteor Society received over 170 eyewitness reports by 09:40 UTC and they are still coming in. Some of them said sound and fragmentation was associated with the event.
The green fireball was seen primarily from Illinois and Wisconsin but witnesses from Michigan, Indiana, Ohio, Iowa, New York, Kentucky, Minnesota and Ontario also reported the event.
The reports from these individuals and the video information from dash cameras and other cameras in the region indicate that the meteor originated 100 km (62 miles) above West Bend, Wisconsin and moved northeast at about 61 155 km/h (38 000 mph), NASA's Meteoroid Environment Office (MEO) said.
The preliminary estimated trajectory plotted from the witness reports shows the meteor was traveling from the Southwest to Northeast ended its flight on the Lake Michigan somewhere between Sheboygan and Manitowoc, WI, the AMS said.
The object disrupted about 33.8 km (21 miles) above Lake Michigan, approximately 14.5 km (9 miles) east of the town of Newton, MEO added.
"The explosive force of this disruption was recorded on an infrasound station in Manitoba, some 960 km (600 miles) away – these data put the lower limit energy of the event at about 10 tons of TNT, which means we are dealing with a meteoroid – orbit indicates an asteroidal fragment – weighing at least 270 kg (600 pounds) and 60 cm (2 feet) in diameter. Doppler weather radar picked up fragments (meteorites) falling into Lake Michigan near the end point of the trajectory."
Featured image: Bright green fireball over Illinois on February 6, 2017. Credit: Lisle PD
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