January 22, 2021

A fireball crosses Andalusia at 65,000 kilometers per hour

A fireball over the Mediterranean, on January 13, 2021.

A fireball over the Mediterranean, on January 13, 2021.

A fireball coming from a comet crossed the sky last night between the north coast of Morocco and the south of Andalusia, after entering the atmosphere at around 10:10 p.m. a speed of 65,000 kilometers per hour.

The phenomenon has been seen by many people in Andalusia, as explained in their social networks by the researcher in charge of the SMART project, the astrophysicist José María Madiedo from the Institute of Astrophysics of Andalusia (IAA-CSIC), who has been in charge of monitoring it.

This analysis has made it possible to determine that the rock that originated this phenomenon came from a comet, and the collision with the atmosphere at this enormous speed caused it to become incandescent, thus generating a fireball that began at an altitude of about 106 kilometers above the north of Morocco, almost on the vertical of the town of Alhucemas.

From there the fireball advanced in a northwesterly direction, and was extinguished at an altitude of 65 kilometers above the Mediterranean, about 30 kilometers away from the Moroccan coast, after traveling a total distance of about 50 kilometers.

The fireball has been registered by the SMART project detectors since the astronomical observatories of Calar Alto (Almería), Sierra Nevada (Granada) and Seville.

These detectors operate within the framework of the Southwest Europe Fireball and Meteor Network (SWEMN), which aims to continuously monitor the sky in order to record and study the impact against the Earth’s atmosphere of rocks from different objects in the System. Solar.


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