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Tuesday, October 8, 2013

fire in the sky......... burning meteorite in Perth, Australia

We look to sky ~ the enormity, vastness of thousands of stars filled night sky offers different things to different people.  In Mahabaratha, it is believed that the planetary position just prior to the yudha foretold undesirable catastrophic consequences………… the retrograde position of Stars, the occurrence of eclipses ~ it is that there were 2 lunar eclipses & a solar eclipse within a lunar month  ~ were ominous portents …………

A meteorite originates in outer space as a solid piece of debris from such sources as asteroids or comets that survives its impact with the Earth's surface. A meteorite's size can range from small to extremely large. When a meteoroid enters the atmosphere, frictional, pressure, and chemical interactions with the atmospheric gases cause it to heat up and radiate that energy, thus forming a fireball, also known as a meteor or shooting/falling star. More generally, a meteorite on the surface of any celestial body is a natural object that has come from somewhere in space. Meteorites have been found on the Moon and Mars.

“In Nov. 1975 – in Snowflake, Arizona, a group of people headed to work in the White Mountains. Driving home from work, the men come across an unidentified flying object. Curious to learn more,  one of them gets out of the truck and is struck by a beam of light from the object. Fearing him to have been killed,  others flee the scene; one friend decides to go back to the spot to retrieve -  but he is nowhere to be found. Making their way back to town to report the incident, the loggers are met with skepticism, as they relate what sounds like a tall tale as others suspect foul play………… leading to a murder investigation.....”

~ that was the plot of ‘Fire in the Sky’ a 1993 science fiction horror drama film based on an alleged extraterrestrial encounter, directed by Robert Lieberman, and written by Tracy Tormé based on Travis Walton's book The Walton Experience.

Though that was a figment of imagination, a burning meteorite trail lighted up Australian sky for 20 minutes after rock plunged into the sea – this occurred in July 2012 and here is something from Daily Mail’s report of the incident.    

A burning trail lit up the sky over Western Australia for 20 minutes after an object suspected to be a meteorite plunged into the sea, leaving a burning orange trail that mesmerised local residents. Beachgoers in Perth debated what could have caused the strange burning line in the sky, which persisted for 20 minutes. Most meteorite trails are only seen briefly - and seeing an object plunge into the sea is rare. The burning trail persisted in the sky for 20 minutes afterwards, say Perth residents, who assume that a meteorite left the flaming streak across the sky.

A local  resident Gavin Trought captured a picture of the 'burning streak', saying, 'The weird streak in the sky seen from Cottesloe last night. I noticed it just before sunset.' Meteorites are fragments of rock that land on Earth's surface. Those that burn up - 'ablate' - in Earth's atmosphere are referred to as meteors.

The meteorite was reported by Perth Now. Seeing such clear, fiery trails is rare. Perth journalist Pip Moir posted a photo she took at Cottesloe Beach to Twitter shortly after 6pm as puzzled onlookers debated what caused the colourful phenomena. Meteorites are fragments of rock and sometimes metal that survive the fall to Earth from space. Most are fragments left over from the collision of two asteroids. Captured by Earth's gravitational force, they are accelerated to speeds of over 11.2 kilometres per second. They can vary in size from a fraction of a millimetre to larger than a football pitch. It is believed a meteorite six miles across wiped out the dinosaurs 65million years ago. Hundreds of meteorites fall to Earth each year but only a handful are recovered.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

PS : photo and news courtesy : dt 2nd July 2o12.


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