Fireball flashing through Maritime sky wows onlookers
Published Wednesday, March 25, 2015 7:47PM ADT
Last Updated Thursday, March 26, 2015 11:05AM ADT
Stargazing Maritimers got a fiery treat on Tuesday night, when a fireball was spotted blazing through the night sky.
Around 9 p.m., residents and webcams alike saw a huge ball of light travelling through the clear, dark night sky, before ending with a flash.
Some say they mistook it for lightning, but in fact it came from space.
“A very bright meteor, or a chunk of rock that was once in space orbiting the sun, came into the same place where the Earth is and burned up in the atmosphere,” said Dave Lane, observatory director at Halifax’s Saint Mary’s University.
Sightings were reported in Charlottetown, Sydney, Halifax and Wolfville, N.S.
“It was quick! It was a flash. We looked, we couldn’t see anything else,” said one Halifax resident.
Fireballs aren’t that rare, said Lane, but we hardly see them.
“We have a particularly cloudy environment here, so a lot of times, they’re going to happen on cloudy nights, and they’re also going to happen late at night, when we’re not outside,” Lane said.
“The average person looking at it might think it was very close, but, I was able to figure out that it was way east over Halifax, probably over Cape Breton,” he said.
The fireball was captured on video by Nova Scotia Webcams. Within 24 hours, the video had garnered more than 21,000 views on YouTube.
“I think mostly it’s been an answer,” said Neil Stephen of Nova Scotia Webcams.“A lot of people saw something really quickly in the sky and didn’t know what it was, so this morning they go on Facebook and they see an answer,” he said.
Lane said the fireball likely burned up in the atmosphere or crashed into the ocean.
With files from CTV Atlantic’s Amanda Debison