July 1, 2011 Fireball

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The American Meteor Society has received several reports of a bright fireball occurring near 2140 (9:40pm) CDT on July 1, 2011. The average magnitude was slightly inferior to that of the full moon and nearly all the reports mentioned a yellow color. It was seen as far east as Mississippi and Tennessee, as far west as Dallas, Texas, and as far north as Missouri. Summaries of this event may be viewed on the AMS 2011 Fireball Table located at: http://www.amsmeteors.org/fireball2/public.php?start_date=2011-01-01&end_date=2011-12-31

Clear Skies!

Robert Lunsford
American Meteor Society

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25 comments

  • Lee Evans 5 years ago

    I left the sight report in Dallas and I am glad to hear it was a meteor. I’ve never seen one but with the bright yellow color and no sound I knew it couldn’t be a firework.

    Reply to Lee
  • Jake Trimble 5 years ago

    We saw it in Beaver County, Pennsylvania. It seemed to last about 3 minutes.
    It was awesome. Bright fire like orange ball with a super white center. Totally cool.

    Reply to Jake
    • Jake Trimble 5 years ago

      Saw the another one 11:05pm eastern night of July 3rd… not as long in the sky.

      Reply to Jake
  • Kim Panet 5 years ago

    We live in the small community of Gores Landing, on the south shore of Rice Lake, which is in southeastern Ontario, Canada.
    On July 1, 2011 we were sitting on our deck with friends when we saw what appeared to be a bright orange ball in the sky over the lake coming toward us at a very high rate of speed. It passed over us and had a constant sound that is hard for me to explain. The best I can do, is say that it reminded to of the sound a hot air balloon makes when the gas is released into the balloon but it was constant. I managed to get a very brief glimpse through the binoculars and looked like a huge ball of fire. There were 6 of us and no one could offer an explanation of what we had just seen. I think the time was around 11 pm.

    Reply to Kim
    • Pat 5 years ago

      We live just outside of Cambridge Ontario and On July 1st at about 10:45pm , my son and I saw two of these bright orange “fireballs” cross the sky in a south to north direction about 10 minutes apart. The second was much larger and brighter than the first. I have been searching the internet for any similar reports and can’t believe that there is nothing out there other than a few on this website ! I’ve been an amateur stargazer for 40+ years and this was one of the most spectacular things I have ever seen in the night sky.
      Kim , we didn’t hear any sound but the description you gave is exactly what we saw and the time appears to match as well. It also seems to correspond to the sighting in the states that night ! Thanks for posting , Pat

      Reply to Pat
  • Bordas Szabolcs 5 years ago

    I’m not sure what I saw, but I think it was meteor. There was 3 different orange lights moving on the sky. First I thought that it’s a yellow star, but stars doesn’t move. They was moving about 1 min, and then changed their lights to White and their angle, then just dissapeared. The time was 12:45 am, but in Romania.(Europe). I’m not sure, because I didn’t see something like this never before. I’m curious, so if you know that it was, or wasn’t a meteor, please send me an e-mail.
    Sorry for my bad english.

    Reply to Bordas
  • Margaret and Oliver Cockriell 5 years ago

    Hi. We are from Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada. We were at our friends place to watch the Canada Day fireworks on July 1, 2011. Later on we were sitting in their back yard and their daughter was the one that noticed the first one – saying Dad what is that in the sky. We all looked up and saw this bright orange round “thing” going across the sky slowly then it faded out. Our friend went in the house and got her video camera and it happened 3 more times after than. This was around 9:00 – 9:30 p.m. on July 1st. Didn’t realize they might be meteorites or something along those lines

    Reply to Margaret
  • scott 5 years ago

    We were on Lk Hopatcong in NJ and saw 2 fireballs going from west to east. Many people on the lake saw this as the local fireworks had just ended. at first we thought it was a plane on fire then we realized how bright and the color red that it had to be a meteor. We then saw a 2nd one but smaller in size. They both look like the flew east and then disappeared. I have seen meteor showers before but nothing like this ever.

    Reply to scott
  • Angela Sanders 5 years ago

    my family and I have seen this 3 nights in a row! july 2,3 and 4 all between 10-11 pm CST. I would really like to know what this is! we initially thought a plane was on fire but it lasted a minute or so then just faded…and last night during the fireworks in our town..it seemed to go strait up! meteors fall not acend! Were in east/central iowa so it’s farther north than missouri

    Reply to Angela
  • Tracy Shufelt 5 years ago

    I live in a small town, Brookhaven, in south Mississippi. We were outside in our pool, when a bright light lit up the sky. I looked up to see the meteor shoot across the sky. It was the brighest closest one I had ever seen! A few minutes later there was a sonic boom. Is that normal? It was kinda scary.

    Reply to Tracy
    • Tracy Shufelt 5 years ago

      I saw the meteor July 1, 2011. It was about 9:30p.m.

      Reply to Tracy
    • amsadmin 5 years ago

      Tracy and All,

      No, this is not normal. If you heard a resulting sonic boom from a meteor then that means that you were close to the point where it flew overhead. It was probably still more than 5 miles up in the atmosphere, but if any remnants made it to the ground, they should have dropped in your general area.

      I hope this helps!

      Robert Lunsford
      American Meteor Society

      Reply to amsadmin
  • amsadmin 5 years ago

    The American Meteor Society has been receiving many reports of “fireballs” lasting several minutes or repeated appearances of fireballs. These are not fireballs as natural fireballs rarely last in excess of 5 seconds. Fireball appearances are also totally random unless they belong to a currently active meteor shower. I believe what most folks have been seeing recently are Chinese lanterns, which have become popular around the fourth of July in recent years. These lanterns produce a bright, circular, orange glow, as they slowly cross the sky. Another possibility for long-lasting fireballs could be appearances of the International Space Station or Iridium flares. Both can appear very bright as they cross the sky.

    I hope this helps!

    Robert Lunsford
    American Meteor Society

    Reply to amsadmin
    • R Thibert 5 years ago

      I saw this on july 01 2011 with my wife and daughter from our house in souther Ontario Canada.
      It was an orange fire ball the passed from the south west to the north east from one horizion to the next in 40 seconds at 2012 and then on the same path at 2027.
      My question is this,was this the same meteorite in the Earths orbit or not? Can,t get this out of my mind,have video of both times but with my phone so looks like a light dot-to bad was amazing.

      Reply to R
      • amsadmin 5 years ago

        As mentioned in my previous post, your observation sounds like the launch of two Chinese lanterns. Satellites can orbit the Earth quickly if in a low orbit. I believe the quickest reappearance of the same satellite is in the order of 45 minutes. Therefore, if not Chinese lanterns, then these are two different satellites.

        Robert Lunsford
        American Meteor Society

        Reply to amsadmin
        • Pat 5 years ago

          Hi Robert ,
          I’d like to thank you for taking the time to respond to the people that posted their observations on the night of July 1st 2011. I can’t imagine how many reports you must receive and for you to comment on this event is very much appreciated.I feel much like Mr. R Thibert when he says ” Can’t get this out of my mind” in reference to what I observed that night. I’d like to ask you one question.
          Is it possible that what we observed in southern Ontario on July 1st connected to the sightings in Texas , Mississippi ,Arkansas , Tennessee , Missouri and Pennsylvania ?People in the southern states reported seeing a “bright flash’ that “lit up the whole sky’ and subsequent “explosiion” followed by “fragmentation” and all generally around the same time. If you draw a line from all these locations it points directly at southern Ontario.Could what have seen that night been the blazing fragments of the meteor that broke apart in the earths atmosphere that night ?
          Again , thanks for your time Robert.
          Pat

          Reply to Pat
  • Kim Panet 5 years ago

    Once again, sitting on our deck last evening at around 10 – 10:30 pm, on the southeast shore of Rice Lake, we observed an orange ball in the sky travelling east toward us very fast. However, when it got about halfway down the lake, it turned north and eventually disappeared. It looked exactly like what we observed and reported to you happening on July 1st, 2011. This time, I did not have a chance to see it through the binoculars but it was at exactly the same place in the sky. We have lived here for 8 years and have never observed anything like this before???? The previous sighting which I did observe through the binoculars as it passed overhead did look like a ball of fire…is this consistent with a satellite??? And as well, the sound??
    Thank you

    Reply to Kim
  • Kate 5 years ago

    Dear Mr. Lunsford-
    I was driving west bound on US Hwy 54 in Withcita, KS, at approximatelt 3:55 A.M. CDT. I saw what I first thought was a falling star, moving from south to north. It was falling at about a 45 degree angle. I realized it was to big for a falling star, and it also had a tail. As it continued, the leading edge became a green-blue color, with a shape of a cone, with fingers pointing backwards, toward the white tail. It disappeared behind the horizon. I expected to hear a boom and to see a fire reach into the sky. Niether happened. Afterward the air had an acid smell. This thing measured about 1/8 inch wide and about 1 1/2 inches long. It went from the upper left of the windshield where it was all white to the center of the drivers side windshield where it became colored to the lower right of the drivers side windshield where it disappeared behind the city skyline. I would appreciate knowing what I saw. I live in the country and have seen meteor showers and shouting stars, but nothing like this. It was amazing.
    Thank you for ;your time in this matter.
    Sincerely,
    Kate

    Reply to Kate
  • Kate 5 years ago

    Mr. Lunsford- I forgot to add the date-July 8,2011. Thank you. Kate

    Reply to Kate
  • Paige Garvey 5 years ago

    Last night around 10:15 my husband and I saw a huge fireball coming towards us . We took a picture of it then it shot back up into the atmosphere and disappeared. We live in Bright Indiana.

    Reply to Paige
  • tyler 5 years ago

    Hi i’ve been all over the internet searching for what i saw a month ago. I was down on the beach point judith in Rhode island between midnight and 3 am you can see the milkyway i believe thats what it was , like a white transluent cloud this is with the naked eye. So the whole group im with is star gazing talking about the cosmos and philosophy. Then there was this bright green light that started out about my 12oclock strait up east over the ocean and it fell to the horizen. At first i though mabey a shooting star we had seen plenty that night but it just kept going glowing so bright this phosphorescent green and a nice visible tail that streched out about 10 degrees. i meen this thing was amazing, but i havent been able to find out what it was this happened between july 1 and 2 2011. Can anyone tell me what this was thank you…

    Reply to tyler
    • amsadmin 5 years ago

      Tyler and All,

      What you witnessed was a fireball. A fireball is a meteor that is larger than normal. Most meteors are only the size of small pebbles. A meteor the size of a softball can produce light equivalent to the full moon for a short instant. The reason for this is the extreme velocity at which these objects strike the atmosphere. Even the slowest meteors are still travelling at 10 miles per SECOND, which is much faster than a speeding bullet. Fireballs occur everyday over some parts of the Earth. It is rare though for an individual to see more than a few of these brilliant fireballs per lifetime as they can also occur during the day or on a cloudy night. Observing during one of the major annual meteor showers can increase your chance of seeing another bright meteor. The next major annual shower, known as the Perseids, will peak on the morning of August 13th.

      I hope this helps!

      Robert Lunsford

      Reply to amsadmin
  • melissa 5 years ago

    I was standing outside my house in Collins mo around 9:20 and had seen these weird orangish red flares or stars go across the sky moving from east to west. I am just wondering what they are.

    Reply to melissa
  • Jonathan Hall 5 years ago

    I saw it in Fayetteville NC sitting on my back deck.

    Reply to Jonathan

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