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The UK meteor: something unusual

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posted on Mar, 6 2012 @ 04:15 AM
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BBC News

Okay, so a couple of things that *I* found unusual:

It travelled north to south for around 1000 miles. This suggests it didn't approach from the ecliptic plane of our solar system. May it suggest that our current approach to the galactic plane may pose problems with extra-solar meteors that we don't track?

Also... It travelled for over 1000 miles and it is guessed that it disappeared over, or in, the Bay of Biscay. Now, let's suppose it was approaching at 20 miles per second or so. For it to survive 1000 miles air drag, it must've been fairly large.

And my final wonder for somebody with a little more knowledge of the visible curvature of the Earth from it's surface: reports suggest it took 2-3 minutes to cross the sky. Based upon speed/distance/time, what speed was it doing, because I reckon a super-sonic jet could do this, albeit it lower altitudes.

Oh, and it was all over local Facebook that it was green, but that'll be the swamp gas.




posted on Mar, 6 2012 @ 04:41 AM
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I can tell you one thing, if you have a good view of both horizons the ISS is traversing, it will only take three minuets to traverse your sky and it is going about 17,250 mph above reentry altitude, about 7.7 km/sec. Generally meteors are going about twice as fast as that, before atmospheric drag slows them. So yeah, that sounds about right. The space shuttle would take about a half an hour to go through reentry burn.



posted on Mar, 6 2012 @ 04:49 AM
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What time was the meteor? I hate missing things like this
I wonder if my cctv captured it?



posted on Mar, 6 2012 @ 04:50 AM
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reply to post by boyg2004
 


I'd thought about the North-South thing too. Doesn't make sense to me. For the speed it apparently crossed the sky, it must have been moving relatively slowly. I've seen shooting stars and they zap by. Any other meteors caught on camera seem to flash and break up before burning out fairly quickly. I suppose if this was an exceptionally hard object skimming the upper atmosphere then it could behave like that. The videos look more like a controlled re-entry (or entry
) to me...



posted on Mar, 6 2012 @ 04:57 AM
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reply to post by FawnyKate
 


From some reports I think it happened around 9:00ish or 9:40PM



posted on Mar, 6 2012 @ 05:00 AM
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maybe this will become the new roswell incident???

maybe it was nessie leaving the loch and returning home before earth explodes?

all i know is i instantly fwd'd a link to the story of the fireball that night to a friend of mine over in the UK cuz something sat odd with me about it...couldn't say what but i knew it was interesting...
edit on 3/6/12 by ICEKOHLD because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 6 2012 @ 05:04 AM
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reply to post by Manhater
 


It was around 9:40 - 9:45pm, I was in a field at the time, the first thing I done when I got back in was create a thread!

www.abovetopsecret.com...



posted on Mar, 6 2012 @ 05:30 AM
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A controlled re-entry seems more plausible to me. Meteorites, as you say, generally flash right across e sky. Also, the way the UK Met Office were on the case almost instantly to tweet 'it's okay folks, just a meteor' is suspicious. What authority do they have with astronomical concerns, and why so quick and so confidently?

I suppose a large, secret satellite with a nuclear energy payload tumbling out of control would be kept hush-hush.



posted on Mar, 6 2012 @ 05:41 AM
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reply to post by boyg2004
 


It makes sense that if the UK wanted to take a satellite out of polar orbit without blowing it to bits, they would bring it down over it's own airspace with a cover story ready and waiting to go. All the major news outlets were on this straight away as was the Met Office which is quite surprising. A controlled splashdown in the bay of Biscay with the Navy ready to recover it could be done with nothing more than a streak across the sky.



posted on Mar, 6 2012 @ 05:46 AM
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Gah. The law of sod came into play Saturday. The only time I wasn't out was between 9 and 10 when I was getting ready to go back out.
Not a happy lady.



posted on Mar, 6 2012 @ 07:02 AM
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reply to post by fiftyfifty
 





A controlled splashdown in the bay of Biscay with the Navy ready to recover it could be done with nothing more than a streak across the sky.

If it traveled horizon to horizon then splash down would be thousands of miles away.
The Bay of Biscay is far too busy to 'hide' a secret recovery operation. Ships would be all over the spash down before any government ships could get there.



posted on Mar, 6 2012 @ 07:08 AM
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Originally posted by boyg2004
BBC News

Okay, so a couple of things that *I* found unusual:

It travelled north to south for around 1000 miles. This suggests it didn't approach from the ecliptic plane of our solar system. May it suggest that our current approach to the galactic plane may pose problems with extra-solar meteors that we don't track?

Also... It travelled for over 1000 miles and it is guessed that it disappeared over, or in, the Bay of Biscay. Now, let's suppose it was approaching at 20 miles per second or so. For it to survive 1000 miles air drag, it must've been fairly large.

And my final wonder for somebody with a little more knowledge of the visible curvature of the Earth from it's surface: reports suggest it took 2-3 minutes to cross the sky. Based upon speed/distance/time, what speed was it doing, because I reckon a super-sonic jet could do this, albeit it lower altitudes.

Oh, and it was all over local Facebook that it was green, but that'll be the swamp gas.


You're silly man! The first 2 months I lived in Texas I saw a green meteor fall from the sky on the way to the grocery store. elpasoallsky.blogspot.com... Was the coolest thing I've ever seen fall out of the sky
no swamp gas



posted on Mar, 6 2012 @ 07:11 AM
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Originally posted by samkent
reply to post by fiftyfifty
 





A controlled splashdown in the bay of Biscay with the Navy ready to recover it could be done with nothing more than a streak across the sky.

If it traveled horizon to horizon then splash down would be thousands of miles away.
The Bay of Biscay is far too busy to 'hide' a secret recovery operation. Ships would be all over the spash down before any government ships could get there.


Not true, the horizon can be as little as 3 miles when observed from ground level, far from the thousands you claim. Plus there will be buildings and trees standing above the horizon in most parts of the UK. Therefore without knowing the altitude of the 'meteor' there is no way of knowing how far away it was when it crossed the visible horizon.

en.wikipedia.org...


For an observer standing on the ground with h = 1.70 metres (5 ft 7 in) (average eye-level height), the horizon is at a distance of 5.0 kilometres (3.1 mi).


The Bay of Biscay is a big place and there will be areas that aren't commonly used (off general shipping routes) so there is no reason that the Navy couldn't have tactically brought something down in a quiet part of the sea. Once the object had slowed sufficiently, it would not be glowing so would be practically invisible in the night sky at lower altitudes before sea contact.


edit on 6-3-2012 by fiftyfifty because: (no reason given)

edit on 6-3-2012 by fiftyfifty because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 6 2012 @ 07:17 AM
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I was lucky enough to see the meteorite, it was green in colour with two trails at the rear, was very bright, I thought it was a firework at first, it was visible across the sky where I was (Bolton) for about 15 - 20 seconds seconds. Hope this helps, p00hbear



posted on Mar, 6 2012 @ 06:03 PM
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The horizon looking out to sea is about 20-25 miles, but the visibility past this is entirely dependent upon elevation of the observed object; stars, for example. A star moving at 1 million miles an hour at an elevation of 1 million light years will be barely perceptible in a lifetime. I get that.

I suppose the things I find most unusual are the north to south path (nobody has tackled that one), and the vast distance this covered before it disappeared or disintegrated.



posted on Mar, 6 2012 @ 06:06 PM
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I just had a look on google maps, and the bay of biscay is PERFECT south from it's observed path due south of Strathclyde.

Polar orbit nuclear satellite. It had to be.



posted on Mar, 6 2012 @ 06:18 PM
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reply to post by boyg2004
 


I was always under the impression that on a Navy ship one can see another Navy ship only 17 miles away, like on board an aircraft carrier (with a scope unless one has phenomenal eyesight) 90 feet above the water (or more) siting the mast of another. Standing on the water and seeing a red blanket on the water I can imagine 3 miles is the limit, should the water be flat. Off shore on a regular fishing boat near water level in florida not in site of skyscrapers one can maybe see land 8 miles away (trees). That's about it.

I believe a German woman claimed (according to Guinness Book) that she can recognize a face of a person a mile away. That is a bit more than simply 'seeing something), so maybe she could see a ship 17 miles away without a scope. That person is clearly not me.
edit on 6-3-2012 by Illustronic because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 6 2012 @ 07:49 PM
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Originally posted by boyg2004
It travelled north to south for around 1000 miles. This suggests it didn't approach from the ecliptic plane of our solar system.


Not unusual at all... most of the asteroid belt (where these objects originate from) lies in the eliptic plane, but not all of it does, and when an asteroid is kicked out of the asteroid belt into an earth crossing orbit, chances are it will then be way off the eliptic plane.



Originally posted by boyg2004
May it suggest that our current approach to the galactic plane may pose problems with extra-solar meteors that we don't track?


No, because we don't just look for NEOs in the vacinity of the eliptic plane.

Extra-solar meteors are another kettle of fish alltogether. They have relative velocities about an order of magnitude faster than their counterparts in solar orbits, but they are also very rare in comparison, and the few we do encounter are usually microscopic particles. In other words they pose little or no threat when compared to large asteroids, and even comets.


Originally posted by boyg2004
Also... It travelled for over 1000 miles and it is guessed that it disappeared over, or in, the Bay of Biscay. Now, let's suppose it was approaching at 20 miles per second or so. For it to survive 1000 miles air drag, it must've been fairly large.


Are you taking into account the extremely low angle the meteoroid entered at?

If it only grazes the upper atmosphere, because the air is so sparce there, less ablation (the process that strips away the meteoroids outer surface during it's passage through the atmosphere) takes place, and the meteoroid can survive for much longer than a meteoroid that enters at a high angle.

It probably was not all that big, at least relatively. Perhaps the size of a large bus, but more likely the size of a small car. If it was of iron/nickel composition, it could even have been much smaller - maybe even the size of a beachball.


Originally posted by boyg2004
And my final wonder for somebody with a little more knowledge of the visible curvature of the Earth from it's surface: reports suggest it took 2-3 minutes to cross the sky. Based upon speed/distance/time, what speed was it doing, because I reckon a super-sonic jet could do this, albeit it lower altitudes.


Most of the reports I have come across suggest that it lasted around 30-40 seconds, perhaps a bit more, but certainly under a minute. I did see some reports that were inconsistent with this, but they may well have been something else altogether.

Based on the majority of reports, it's been estimated that the object was going at around 27 km/s, which is towards the upper end of the velocity scale we would expect for asteroids...


First-off, nobody seems to have seen or imaged the entire trail, as it appears to have been exceptionally long.

The start may have been high above the sea somewhere between the Faeroe, Shetland and Orkney Islands. However, a visible start height had to be assumed at between 140-90 km to determine this rough area, as only one witness's report for the beginning was available, that of an experienced astronomical observer near the Moray Firth coast. If correct, this would have put the start likely within 70 km or so of 3.9° W, 60.5° N.

The meteor then appeared to have followed a generally NNW to SSE trending path from there. Its projected surface track probably cut across Orkney Mainland as its first landfall, before possibly grazing Duncansby Head, then over the Moray Firth towards the "Aberdeen Angle" of northern Scotland. Its land track there was likely from about Banff to Inverbervie.

Flitting across the North Sea off the Firth of Forth after that, the start of its final landfall was probably near Lindisfarne on the north Northumberland coast. As suggested by the Whitley Bay video, it probably passed almost overhead for several cities in northeast England, including Newcastle, Gateshead and Durham, then tracked south roughly parallel to the Pennines, albeit some way to their east, down much of the length of England.

Its end was much better-observed than its start, and was probably within 25 km of a point near Bozeat, Northamptonshire, close to the Northants-Beds-Bucks border, around 0°45.3' W, 52°13.3' N. The average value best-estimated for its final visible height was 61.6 ± 8.5 km.

Assuming this path was roughly correct, the fireball's intra-atmospheric trajectory would have been between 1060 and 900 km long, descending at between 5° to 2° from the horizontal, so literally skimming along the meteor layer in the upper atmosphere.

Given that nobody saw the whole trail after all, I have attempted to correct for the approximate parts of this path not seen by the witnesses who estimated the flight-time, and although this is less certain, it seems plausible the duration was around 30-45 seconds for the entire visible flight. If so, this would compute to an atmospheric velocity range, not allowing for deceleration, of order 27 ± 5 km/sec, thus meteorically slow to slow-medium in speed. (Meteor atmospheric-entry velocities range from circa 11 to 72 km/sec.)

Sadly, such a grazing path would make the chance for any meteorites surviving to reach the surface extremely small, and also make it impossible to usefully identify anything other than a huge potential surface area into which they might have dropped anyway.

Source: Alastair McBeath SPA Meteor Section Director


edit on 6-3-2012 by FireballStorm because: Added a bit more to the external source quote and fixed typos.



posted on Mar, 7 2012 @ 03:09 AM
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I was talking with someone the other day about this, we are both just south east of glasgow.
I didnt see it myself, but my friend did, he was just heading out at the time.
The thing that struck me as unusual about his account of what he saw, is that he remembers seeing clouds, and that the object "looked" to be below cloud leve, and lasted about 15 seconds.
So could this really be this low, and still travel the length of the uk?



posted on Mar, 7 2012 @ 03:18 AM
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FireballStorm... Excellent update, and thanks for that. It's all very sound information, and makes perfect sense.... Excepting the asteroids being knocked out of the ecliptic from the asteroid belt. It would take tremendous energy to knock one out on a path that saw it pulled back in on a north to south vector; energy in both the ejection and the gravitational pull back in.

It's hard to explain what I'm trying to say, but it would have to go WAY out in the perpendicular to come back in at that angle if it wasn't extra-solar. Incidentally, are we approaching the galactic plane from under it (our perspective), because I don't know at all.



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