[meteorite-list] Fireball Lights Up Skies Over Northern Italy, France, Switzerland
From: Ron Baalke <baalke_at_meteoritecentral.com>
Date: Thu, 18 Feb 2016 17:07:15 -0800 (PST)
Falling meteorite lights up skies over northern Italy
18 Feb 2016
A streaking fireball brighter than the full moon lit up skies over northern
Italy on Wednesday evening.
The fireball left a trail of vapour hanging in the sky for minutes.
Not long after the unusual event, pictures of bright flashes, vapour trails
and eyewitness reports started to emerge on social media, with users suggesting
they had witnessed a meteorite falling to earth.
The unidentified flying object lit up skies over northern Italy, travelling
east to west from Genoa to Venice at around 6.19pm.
Sightings of the object were also reported from as far away as southern
France and Switzerland.
La Repubblica reported a spike in phone calls made to Italy's fire brigade
to report the phenomenon.
A photo of the vapour trail, captured on a road outside Genoa, was uploaded
to the Italian citizen journalism website, YouReporter.
The trail over liguria. Photo: YouReporter
"The object crossed the sky for about four seconds... I've never seen
anything like it," the user, called Masdives, wrote. "This is a picture
of the contrail I took, which was in the sky for about a minute."
Moments later a similar object was seen hurtling over the skies of Venice
almost 400 kilometers further east.
Angelo 1960 uploaded a photo snapped above town of Jesolo, showing a bright
flaming object streaking through the sky.
"I saw it coming down rapidly, followed by a trail of smoke and fire,"
The meteorite snapped over Venice. Photo: YouReporter
Sightings of the object were not limited to Italy, with reports also emerging
from as far away as southern France and Switzerland.
Twitter user Romain Magellan uploaded a pic of the object snapped above
the ski resort of Valmorel in France.
Reports of Thursday's UFO are consistent with descriptions of a bolide
- a small piece of rock or ice from outer space that burn up as they race
through the earths atmosphere before hitting the ground.
Bolides are extremely bright objects - often with apparent magnitudes
much brighter than the full moon.
According to American space agency Nasa, some 100 tons of dust, gravel,
rock and ice enter the earth's atmosphere every day.
Received on Thu 18 Feb 2016 08:07:15 PM PST