Footage captures ‚fireball‘ falling to Earth

ESA_ISS_Meteor

Footage recorded from the International Space Station spotted a fireball falling to Earth over the Atlantic Ocean off the west coast of South Africa earlier this month.

The footage, a timelapse of photos captured by astronaut Paolo Nespoli, was released by the European Space Agency (ESA) on Thursday and shows what’s been described as a “bright meteor or a fireball” with an estimated speed of around 40km per second falling to Earth.

Look closely and you’ll spot a bright flash in the upper right corner of the screen about seven seconds into the video below, but we should warn you, it is only a very fleeting glimpse. The images were captured while the Space Station was flying from the southern Atlantic Ocean over to Kazakhstan and though it could be a re-entering piece of space debris, Detlef Koschny of the ESA reckons it is more likely that it is a fireball.

“It’s brighter than all the stars seen in the background; only at the very end of the video before sunrise do we see something of similar brightness – I guess Venus,” Koschny said.

“So, if it is a meteor then it could be a decimeter-sized object.”

“We call bright meteors (brighter than Venus), a fireball. I guess this would qualify as a fireball,” he added. (…)

Source: www.joe.ie – Text by Conor Heneghan

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