montage of feb 6 meteor

Meteor seen across midwest early Monday morning

The things you see on Twitter! I took a peek before heading to bed, only to see that the National Weather Service of Chicago had tweeted a dashcam from an Illinois police car … showing a meteor falling from the sky. Timestamp: 01:25.

In case you’ve forgotten your science classes:

A meteor is a space rock—or meteoroid—that enters Earth’s atmosphere. As the space rock falls toward Earth, the resistance—or drag—of the air on the rock makes it extremely hot. What we see is a “shooting star.” That bright streak is not actually the rock, but rather the glowing hot air as the hot rock zips through the atmosphere.

Meteorites are meteors that reach the Earth’s surface; they are rare.

So I started poking around. The meteor was seen in at least two states, Illinois and Wisconsin, and perhaps Iowa and Indiana.

 

Chronology of meteor sighting, as posted on Twitter

Times are Pacific.

 

00:17, Wisconsin

 

00:30, Wisconsin

 

00:51, Wisconsin

 

00.55, Wisconsin

 

1:13, Illinois

 

1:18, Wisconsin

 

1:35, Wisconsin

Famous meteors

At least 16 witnesses captured the 1992 Peekskill, NY, meteor on video, “making it one of the best-documented meteor strikes in history.” Pretty sure that record just turned into dust.

The Ensisheim Meteorite (1492) landed near the town of Ensisheim in Alsace, France. It is the earliest meteorite “witnessed in the Western world” from which we have samples.

 
Credit:
Featured photo is montage from this tweet

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