Bright fireball seen over wide areas of Japan

Bright fireball seen over wide areas of Japan

A bright fireball was seen and recorded over Japan at 11:32 UTC on January 20, 2021 (20:32 JST). The object was seen for several seconds over wide areas of Japan, including Kanto, Tokai, and Kinki.

Fujii Daichi, a curator who specializes in astronomy at the Hiratsuka City Museum, near Tokyo, told NHK he believes the object was a fragment of an asteroid that burned up in the Earth's atmosphere.

Fujii says the fireball appeared to be traveling at a relatively slow speed compared to a regular meteor, but it was as bright as the moon.

A very bright fireball was also seen over central Japan at around 16:35 UTC on November 28, 2020. The object was seen and recorded from many parts of western and central Japan and was accompanied by a rumbling noise.

"It is rare for [shooting start] to be so bright," Takeshi Inoue, director of the Akashi Municipal Planetarium in Hyogo Prefecture, told Kyodo.

"We believe [it] was as bright as the full moon," he said.

Featured image: Fireball over Japan on January 20, 2021. Credit: NHK

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