Popular Astronomy

Share to Facebook Share to Twitter Stumble It More...

Fireball reports from 2011 September

(This report has been compiled from the SPA Forum entry posted by Alastair McBeath).

Here is a summary of fireball-class meteor sightings reported to the SPA for 2011 September, as seen from the UK. 

* September 4-5, around 20:00 UT, provided a bright fireball for a witness in East Sussex. 

* The evening twilight on September 13-14 yielded a magnitude perhaps -12 event, as seen from Suffolk, at about 19:00 UT. 

* From September 17-18, Assistant Meteor Director Tony Markham forwarded details that an extremely bright, flaring meteor may have been automatically imaged from Essex at 21:32 UT by Peter Meadows. See: 


for the photo. Unfortunately, as the object wasn't witnessed separately, we can't be sure it was definitely a fireball (it may have been an aircraft or a sky-lantern, though it probably wasn't a satellite, as its path was likely too long for the ten-second exposure). Part of the trail is on the adjacent ten-second image, which would not rule out its having been a meteor, if it appeared right at the end of one shot, and was slow-moving enough to be still in-flight by the start of the next, but does somewhat count against it. The obvious brilliance of the object means it could have been widely-observed if it was meteoric, so any confirmatory data would be particularly helpful! 

* Two reports have arrived of a magnitude -5/-6 or brighter fireball on September 27-28, at 23:25 UT, one from South Yorkshire, the other Co Londonderry. Early indications are this meteor may have been high above NW England to southern Scotland, or the nearby Irish Sea. 

All extra observations of these or separate fireballs (meteors of magnitude -3 and brighter) spotted from the British Isles and places nearby would be welcomed by the Meteor Section.

Advice on what to record and where to report to  can be found at :


Added by:  Tony Markham