Very bright fireball over the northern US and Canada

Very bright fireball over the northern US and Canada

A very bright fireball was seen in the northern US and Canada around 04:53 UTC on February 18, 2017. The event was captured in 3 NASA all-sky cameras and cameras belonging to the Southern Ontario Meteor Network.

Analysis of the video data shows that the meteor was first detectable at an altitude of 83 km (52 miles) above US Highway 219, southeast of the Pennsylvania town of DuBois.

It then moved northeast some 42 km (26 miles) through the atmosphere at almost exactly 64 400 km/h (40 000 mph), ablating 42 km above the countryside just north of Winslow Hill, NASA's Meteoroid Environment Office (MEO) said.

Bright fireball northern US and Canada on February 18, 2017

Credit: NASA/MEO

Bright fireball northern US and Canada - February 18, 2017 - trajectory

Credit: NASA/MEO

The camera data shows very little deceleration of the meteor, which gives it a poor chance of producing meteorites, MEO said and added that more analysis is required to rule this out.

"The object had the brightness of a quarter Moon, which means we are dealing with an asteroid fragment weighing about 9 kg (20 pounds), with a diameter of roughly 18 cm (7 inches)."

Featured image: Very bright fireball over northern US and Canada on February 18, 2017. Credit: NASA/MEO

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