[meteorite-list] Large Fireball Over Scotland

From: Peter Davidson <P.Davidson_at_meteoritecentral.com>
Date: Wed, 2 Mar 2016 10:16:12 +0000
Message-ID: <576F2B74A34E584AA173B40D1A8914C336D1BDBF_at_NMSMAIL01.nms2k.int>

Dear Ron and Everyone on the List

Some quite spectacular images were shown on the news here. As usual the broadcasters never seem to get the facts quite right. From what I saw on TV, it seemed to be a meteor or possibly a piece of space junk but what I am not sure about from all that has been said, or written, is the exact trajectory/direction of the fall so at present there is no indication if any material actually fell to Earth. So I would say to any would-be hunters to hold on until more information is available - also that part of the World is having a lot of bad weather at the moment so traipsing around in a sparsely populated area with poor weather, poor light and poor visibility is probably not advisable.


Peter Davidson
Senior Curator of Mineralogy

Natural Sciences Department
National Museums Collection Centre
242 West Granton Road
TEL: 0131 247 4283
E-mail: p.davidson at nms.ac.uk

-----Original Message-----
From: Meteorite-list [mailto:meteorite-list-bounces at meteoritecentral.com] On Behalf Of Ron Baalke via Meteorite-list
Sent: 01 March 2016 20:34
To: Meteorite Mailing List
Subject: [meteorite-list] Large Fireball Over Scotland


The mystery 'meteor' that turned night into day: Giant fireball lights up the horizon across Scotland and leaves onlookers terrified

* Thousands of people saw hug flash of light from Inverness to Edinburgh
* Light followed by rolling bang that some thought was satellite sonic boom
* Twitter lit up with speculation over the event, which made ground shake
* Police and the MoD said they were unaware of what could have caused it

By Maureen Sugden For The Scottish Daily Mail and Martin Robinson, Uk Chief Reporter For Mailonline March 1, 2016

People from Inverness to Edinburgh reported a white, red or blue light that swept across the skyline at around 6.45pm last night.

Witnesses described a rumbling noise lasting up to ten seconds before the pitch black Scottish evening turned bright white and a fireball swept across the horizon.

Kim Paterson of Brechin, Angus, tweeted: 'Proper massive rumble, ground shaking, folk seeing the sky flash... is this the end?!'

Police Scotland said it received a number of 999 calls and confirmed it was likely to be a meteor while the Met Office confirmed there had been no thunder storms over Scotland.

There were suggestions it could have been a sonic boom from an aircraft or a flare from a satellite.

There were no reports of aircraft in distress, while the MoD said it was unaware of any events in the area - but would not comment on claims it was linked to an aircraft.

Astronomers last night said it was most likely to be a meteor burning up as it came into contact with the Earth's atmosphere.

The meteor is likely to have burned up but people are searching for debris.

On Twitter, Jake Logan said: 'Flash in the sky that lit up Braemar like daylight, followed by a huge rolling bang like thunder that lasted 10 secs. Sky is clear.'

John Poyner of Nethy Bridge, Inverness-shire, said: 'Anyone local just see a bright flash lighting up whole sky. Not lightning. Reports of brilliant meteor like object.'

A Police Scotland spokesman said they began receiving calls at around 6.55pm on Monday evening.

She said: 'One told us the sky had been lit up with an object like a fireball.
Another caller said there was a very loud bang and others said the house shook.

'We know police in Inverness and in the south also received calls - it was seen by people across Scotland.
'We have checked and been told it was likely to be a meteor shower.'

The bright white streak across the night sky sparked speculation on social media whether it was an astronomical event, military activity or, perhaps more far-fetched, linked to British astronaut Tim Peake.

Inverness SNP member Jackie Hendry tweeted: 'Did anyone else see that big white flash in the sky ... I reckon it was Tim Peake.'

Madcow-paula tweeted: 'LOL ... some reckon _at_astro-timpeake dropped something causing a big white flash in the sky over Scotland this evening!'

SteveCDT1986 tweeted:'Big white flash and some sort of meteor in the night sky. Looked really close aswell. #endoftheworld #armageddon.'

_at_Colsuth tweeted: 'saw it here in Moray just as we were passing RAF Lossie.
Thought it was from there.'

A Ministry of Defence spokeswoman said they would not discuss if there was any link to any operations in the area.

STV weather forecaster Sean Batty said: 'I've had lots of tweets from around the North and East of the country this evening, with people reporting a loud bang and a large flash in the sky. Most tweets have come from around Perthshire, Angus, Aberdeenshire and Moray.

'There are no thunderstorms being reported anywhere in Scotland this evening, therefore this is not due to a flash of lightning. My only conclusion would be that this is indeed a meteor which has burned up and exploded during entry into our upper atmosphere.'

In 2013, a meteor that exploded over Russia was found by scientists to be 30 times brighter than the Sun, with the force of 40 Hiroshima atom bombs. Their analysis confirmed it was the biggest in a century.

The 62ft-wide meteor exploded in a fireball above Chelyabinsk, causing damage up to 50 miles away. At its fastest, it was travelling at more than 40,000mph.

'It has burned up and exploded'.


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Received on Wed 02 Mar 2016 05:16:12 AM PST

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