A fireball that soared over the North Carolina coast on Friday was seen flaming across the state’s skies.
NASA Meteor Watch said the fireball – which is an “unusually bright” meteor – “grazed the North Carolina coast” around 7.40 p.m. and became “visible 48 miles above the sea. ocean off Camp Lejeune ”. It was one of five fireballs that were reportedly seen over the United States that night, according to NASA.
More than 100 people said they saw the fireball over North Carolina, according to the American Meteor Society.
The reports have arrived across North Carolina – including people hundreds of miles from the coast in the western part of the state. Some people have reported seeing the fireball in South Carolina.
It was also seen in central North Carolina, where a video taken about 15 miles south of Raleigh and released by the American Meteor Society captured the fireball lighting up the sky.
NASA estimates that the fireball moved northeast at 32,000 mph and disintegrated 28 miles above Morehead City, NC, after “traveling 42 miles through the Earth’s upper atmosphere ”. But he said there was “more than the usual amount of uncertainty in the trajectory solution due to the fact that all observers are located west of the fireball.”
The fireballs, also known as shooting stars, are “spectacular enough to be seen over a very large area,” NASA said. While they are sometimes seen by “ground spotters” at night, it is much rarer to see them during the day.
Meteors and fireballs are the “visible paths” of meteorites – which are fragments of asteroids or comets orbiting the sun – which “entered Earth’s atmosphere at high speed,” according to NASA.
The meteorites that cause the fireballs are usually too small to stay in one piece while passing through Earth’s atmosphere, NASA said, but their fragments are sometimes found on the ground.
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