Four Huge Meteors Were Visible Around the U.S. and Europe

Thursday, 16 November 2017 - 7:42PM
Space
Earth
Thursday, 16 November 2017 - 7:42PM
Four Huge Meteors Were Visible Around the U.S. and Europe
Twitter/City of Phoenix, AZ
Tuesday night saw four separate giant rocks flash across the sky in various locations around the world, as both America and Europe were visited by enormous fiery visitors that lit up the night like fireworks.

One such meteor was caught on camera in Phoenix, Arizona, where it was seen streaking across the sky at around 8:30pm. Ten minutes later, residents in Ohio got a good look at a separate meteor that produced a similar bright light in the sky, and later in the night, Germany and France both got their own personal meteor visitors that provided pretty light shows for anyone awake enough to notice them.

Take a look for yourself:




While the pulp sci-fi novel Day of the Triffids may make people wary of staring at particularly bright lights in the night's sky for fear of going blind and being more susceptible to leafy alien invasions, it's believed that two of these huge flashes were probably just connected to the Taurid meteor shower, which supposedly reached its peak on Saturday night (at least, in the Northern hemisphere), but which is still ongoing.

The Taurid shower is the result of Earth passing through a trail of rock and ice that was left by the comet Encke. According to the American Meteor Society, which released a statement in the wake of these flashes in the sky:

Opening quote
"Associated with the comet Encke, the Taurids are actually two separate showers, with a Southern and a Northern component. Both branches of the Taurids are most notable for colorful fireballs and are often responsible for an increased number of fireball reports from September through November."
Closing quote


That said, only two of these big flashes can be attributed to the Taurid meteor shower - Ohio and Germany's meteors were angled in such a way that they couldn't have come from Encke's leftover trail.

There's no specific evidence suggesting that this might be linked to an unexplained sonic boom that was heard over parts of Alabama a little earlier on Tuesday, but the timing does add up, and there might be a connection - if the Alabama boom wasn't actually the result of a secret government research project into hypersonic flight.

Either way, our skies are awfully crowded at the moment, and there's evidence to suggest that it might be worth keeping an eye peeled just in case something else shows up to illuminate the night's sky in the coming days.

We probably won't face a dinosaur-killing giant meteor, but we may at the very least get some more pretty natural fireworks as meteors streak across the sky.
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