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  #1  
Old 08-29-2012, 04:32 AM
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GRUNTERSDAD GRUNTERSDAD is offline
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Default Meteor Explodes over Great Britain Last Night

Did any of our British brothers hear this bit of noise last night. A lot of commotion for something the size of a Golf ball:

If you catch them at just the right time, a streaking meteor can be a stunning sight in the night sky. But when that meteor contains just a tiny bit of ice, a beautiful light show can turn into a violent explosion, as happened in the skies over Great Britain last night.
The extraterrestrial explosion occurred just over South Wales in southwest Great Britain. The meteor rocked windows and set off car alarms, creating a sonic boom effect. Explained one witness, prior to the detonation "It had a heat trail behind, it was orange and white and very bright, and also seemed very close." No one was hurt.
Why do meteors explode? Some are loaded with either ice or carbon dioxide, which can be trapped inside of the rock. As the gases boil and expand during entry into the Earth's atmosphere, meteors can explode in an epic display with as much force as a hydrogen bomb.
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Old 08-29-2012, 08:05 AM
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Default Re: Meteor Explodes over Great Britain Last Night

We were having British summer weather last night. That is to say pouring rain and a howling gale. Anyone with any sense would have been snug and warm indoors. We wouldn't have noticed the Second Coming.
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Old 08-29-2012, 09:32 AM
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Default Re: Meteor Explodes over Great Britain Last Night

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thud View Post
We were having British summer weather last night. That is to say pouring rain and a howling gale. Anyone with any sense would have been snug and warm indoors. We wouldn't have noticed the Second Coming.
Thud, to you & me, Grunt's last night was our Monday night.

I heard it Grunt, but my son & his friend saw the whole deal. By coincidence, they were walking from our garage to the house, & were amazed to see this spectacle. It was a clear night, so visibility was good. Also, we live pretty high up in the middle of nowhere, so the effect was even more pronounced. Gutted I missed it, as that's a once in a lifetime visual feast right there. The boom was impressive, especially as it exploded some 40 miles away from us.

You're right though Grunt, the energy in these things is enormous compared to their size. Most people don't know that the average shooting star is no bigger than a grain of sand, the biggest being the size of a pea, so a meteor the size of a golfball is capable of producing quite a spectacle. In terms of destructive power, a meteor on impact delivers about 100 times it's weight in TNT.
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Old 08-29-2012, 10:46 AM
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Default Re: Meteor Explodes over Great Britain Last Night

It rained Monday night too, I'm afraid. This has been the coldest, wettest summer on record and much of the time it has been cloudy. I've missed all the major astronomical events this year due to cloud and the telescope is sitting gathering dust.
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Old 08-29-2012, 10:54 AM
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Default Re: Meteor Explodes over Great Britain Last Night

One night on the beach I saw a meteorite looking thing out over the ocean. Doesn't sound quite as big as your one but it was like a huge fireball falling through the sky. It lit up the entire beach for about two seconds. It was bright white/blue with a long tail. It was also incredibly close, I couldn't guess how far.
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