November 2015 – Fireball Surge

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Fireball over – 0129 UTC, 7th November 2015 – © Graeme WhippsTimelaspe of the Fireball

The American Meteor Society has logged a record number of fireball reports in the last two weeks. In the whole of 2015 there have been 472 unique fireball events witnessed by 5 or more people each. 172 of those have been logged in the last 11 days. That means 36% of the 2015 fireballs events with 5 or more witnesses have occurred in the last 11 days between November 1st and 11th.

When we look at significant events with 10 or more witnesses each, from October 30th – November 10th 2015, the AMS cataloged 44 events versus 14 in the same time period of 2014 — that is a 3 times increase year over year.

Its clear in the daily fireball reports graph below, that daily witness reports of fireball events have more than doubled, and stayed strong, since the beginning of the November.

Total Witness Reports Per Day

Total Witness Reports Per Day

So what’s up with all these November 2015 fireballs? Well as it turns out, meteor astronomer David Asher of Armaugh Observatory calculated that gravitational forces from Jupiter would cause the Taurid meteor stream to be more heavily concentrated near Earth at certain intervals. Asher refers to these periods of increased fireballs as Taurid Swarm Years. The predictions come close to repeating every 61 years and according to Asher the last good swarm encounter was 1954, so 2015 is predicted to be a swarm year. The increased fireball activity reported to the AMS so far this month seems to support this Taurid Swarm theory.

Below is a map of the unique North American fireball events witnessed by 10 or more people and logged with the AMS between October 30th 2015 and November 11th 2015.

map-for-post

Trajectories of the most noticable fireballs reported to the AMS between Oct 30th and Nov 11th. 2015

Its not just the AMS who is noticing more fireballs, Dr. Bill Cooke with the NASA Meteoroid Environmental Office, who runs an all sky meteor camera network in parts of the country reported, “Our cameras have already recorded more than twice the number of North Taurids observed last year.”

Tonight is the peak of the Northern Taurid Meteor Shower, and based on the Taurid Swarm and activity over the last two weeks, it is probably one of the best nights in the last 61 years to see a fireball. If you have bad weather, or can’t make it out tonight, don’t worry, Dr. Cooke notes, “The Northern Taurids have shown up consistently on Halloween, and continue till November 21-22, so we have about 11 more days of increased fireball activity.”

Below is a table of significant fireball events reported to the AMS between October 30th and November 11th, 2015.

Event ID Average UTC Date & Time Countries States # of reports RA Dec RA decimal
#2846-2015 31/10/2015 03:05 United States CO 11 18:31 277 -1
#2856-2015 31/10/2015 12:18 United States CA, AZ, NV 28 09:56 149 20
#2824-2015 31/10/2015 18:06 Slovakia, Hungary, Lithuania, Austria, Netherlands, Sweden, Poland, Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany 139 14:09 212 1
#2891-2015 01/11/2015 22:02 US, Canada CT, NH, ME, MA, VT, NY, RI, NJ, Ontario, Québec 185 14:49 222 38
#2910-2015 02/11/2015 02:17 United States OR, WA, ID 10 22:22 335 -28
#2890-2015 02/11/2015 03:39 United States VA, MD, PA, NY, DE, ME 18 04:52 73 -3
#2892-2015 02/11/2015 13:51 Thailand 11 16:42 250 38
#2896-2015 02/11/2015 21:18 Germany, France, Netherlands, Belgium 45 15:43 235 26
#2931-2015 02/11/2015 22:05 Austria, Germany, Netherlands 12 17:49 267 35
#2932-2015 02/11/2015 23:06 Canada, United States NY, VT, NH, ME, MA, CT, Ontario, Québec 26 14:17 214 13
#2934-2015 03/11/2015 00:20 Canada, United States ME, PA, VT, NY, MA, Ontario, Québec 10 10:18 154 -35
#2933-2015 03/11/2015 01:24 United States TX, MO, AR, KS, OK, IL, IA, NE 21 19:36 294 12
#2933-2015 03/11/2015 01:45 United States KY, WI, IN, MO, OH, IL, IA, MI 11 02:33 38 23
#2939-2015 03/11/2015 04:15 Canada, United States OH, NY, PA, WV, MI, Ontario, Québec 18 23:37 354 12
#2941-2015 03/11/2015 05:00 United States MN, WI, IL, IA 11 n/a n/a -45
#2946-2015 03/11/2015 10:27 United States PA, MI, KY, IL, OH, IN 10 19:48 297 -43
#2935-2015 03/11/2015 11:56 United States TX, LA 12 07:27 111 -19
#2987-2015 04/11/2015 01:07 Canada, United States MA, CT, PA, NY, MD, ME, NH, RI, VT, NJ, Ontario 118 01:42 25 6
#3003-2015 04/11/2015 02:00 United States WA, CA, OR 12 13:19 199 87
#2994-2015 04/11/2015 02:30 Canada, United States MI, IL, IN, KY, WI, OH, NY, PA, Ontario 39 20:19 304 -3
#2990-2015 04/11/2015 02:54 United States MD, VA, NH, NY, NJ 10 10:16 154 -68
#2989-2015 04/11/2015 03:49 United States CA 14 01:34 23 -20
#2988-2015 04/11/2015 09:47 United States PA, WV, TN, OH, DE, VA, WI 12 01:16 19 28
#2986-2015 04/11/2015 10:03 United States WI, MI, MN 19 23:14 348 -10
#2991-2015 04/11/2015 11:44 United States NE, IA, MN, IL, SD 17 17:55 268 76
#3044-2015 05/11/2015 01:03 United States FL 10 02:57 44 27
#3043-2015 05/11/2015 01:50 United States NY, PA, ME, CT, MA, NH, DE 19 06:51 102 33
#3060-2015 05/11/2015 03:58 United States IA, IL, MO, KS, WI, OH, IN, AR 39 02:23 35 25
#3066-2015 05/11/2015 05:11 United States CA 14 14:30 217 33
#3098-2015 06/11/2015 02:58 United States CA, AZ 35 01:41 25 38
#3123-2015 06/11/2015 20:12 Germany, France, United Kingdom 10 16:14 243 14
#3137-2015 07/11/2015 00:59 United States MD, PA, NJ, DE, VA, CT, RI, NY 17 16:19 244 30
#3171-2015 07/11/2015 20:06 Germany, United Kingdom, France, Belgium 12 11:10 10 167
#3199-2015 08/11/2015 00:50 Germany, Switzerland, France 15 13:55 -15 208
#3204-2015 08/11/2015 04:06 United States OH, IA, MI, IL, NY, WV 16 02:58 44 26
#3184-2015 08/11/2015 09:12 United States NJ, MA, RI, NY, CT, PA, MD, VA, NH 33 03:54 58 9
#3183-2015 08/11/2015 10:14 Canada, United States VA, PA, OH, NJ, MD, DE, CT, Ontario 16 02:56 44 30
#3233-2015 09/11/2015 01:14 Canada, United States MI, OH, NJ, IL, VA, PA, Ontario 11 04:03 60 35
#3241-2015 09/11/2015 02:32 United States KY, IN, VA, DC, OH, MD 10 23:12 348 -17
#3230-2015 09/11/2015 02:37 United States, Canada Saskatchewan, Manitoba, MT, ND 17 00:55 13 -12
#3229-2015 09/11/2015 02:53 United States DE, VA, PA, WV, NJ 10 09:32 143 15
#3228-2015 09/11/2015 03:08 United States NY, NJ, ME, MD, VA 10 06:08 92 21
#3227-2015 09/11/2015 05:43 United Kingdom, Germany, France, Belgium, Netherlands 41 21:50 327 -1
#3226-2015 09/11/2015 05:44 United States IL, MI, WI, 10 04:31 67 39
#3223-2015 09/11/2015 10:04 United States VA, OH, MD, MI, WV, DE 12 00:08 2 60
#3270-2015 10/11/2015 02:17 United States, Canada CT, VT, MA, NY, NH, Ontario 13 10:28 157 65
#3268-2015 10/11/2015 02:51 United States FL 13 21:25 321 41

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52 comments

  • Jeff Malacane 6 months ago

    Saw one last night on I 4 westbound at 7.25 P.M. around mile marker 48.

    Reply to Jeff
    • Lauri Browning 6 months ago

      I saw one last night around 8:00 pm. I was headed east on Hwy 20 around Forney, TX.

      Reply to Lauri
    • John 6 months ago

      I saw one this morning at 6:30 am. Driving south on 35 I was in Round Rock Texas in came strait down with a very long tail. The largest I have ever seen.

      Reply to John
  • Aymee Zimmerman 6 months ago

    Yayyyyy, cool…
    Last night just before 8pm (11/10/2015) heading westbound on Highway 88, I saw the longest tailed “fireball” shooter flying across the sky from south to north, that ended in a sputtering fire cracker type burst. It was so awesome.

    Anyhow, just thought I’d let you know !
    Always,
    Aymee

    Reply to Aymee
    • Linda Graham 6 months ago

      I saw it too! In Los Gatos in the Northern sky! very cool and blue.

      Reply to Linda
    • JR 6 months ago

      I saw this one too the other day on November 10. I forgot about it until just now. I sent my wife a text right after I saw it to tell her about it, and so I’d have the date/time to google it later. It was the brightest one I’ve ever seen with an incredible tail.

      Reply to JR
      • JR 6 months ago

        I forgot to mention my location, I saw this in mid-Missouri.

        Reply to JR
  • Jeannine 6 months ago

    I saw a long tail fireball right over my home in Mesa Arizona last nite about10:45!!! It was spectacular along with many other falling stars before 11:30!!

    Reply to Jeannine
  • Tim Murphy 6 months ago

    6:22 pm on Nonember 11, 2015 saw meteorite heades East to West north of Sacramento

    Reply to Tim
  • Keana 6 months ago

    I saw on headed North on the Florida Turnpike from the Orlando area.

    Reply to Keana
  • Teri Wilson 6 months ago

    Last night, on 11/11/15 at approximately 6:10pm, I saw a speeding fireball burn out in the sky traveling east on 96 in the area of South Lyon, Michigan. It was a beautiful sight!

    Reply to Teri
  • Joelle 6 months ago

    We saw one last night in Gamaliel, AR just before dark. It was really bright and low and then split into two. Very cool to witness.

    Reply to Joelle
    • Philip Taldo 6 months ago

      Joelle….I saw this too from Mountain View , Arkansas. It was spectacular !

      Reply to Philip
    • Barbara Leigh-Kaplan 6 months ago

      So glad to know others saw this one! I reported it at the time and just now found your posts. It was amazing, wasn’t it?! I’m a meteor shower junkie and had never seen a fireball before, just the usual “shooting stars.” At 71, I’m thrilled to have finally seen one. It seemed it was in the sky forever. Incredibly bright at dusk. We are in Oakland Arkansas on the north shore of Bull Shoals, south west of Gamaliel, so it must have been the same one. It was low in the sky, 30° above the horizon from northeast to southeast.

      Reply to Barbara
  • JT 6 months ago

    Wednesday, November 11, 2015, around 9pm CST, saw one to the east of Elmore County 7 in Alabama.

    Reply to JT
  • Robin Steadman 6 months ago

    I witnessed this occurrence yesterday morning. I work out quite early — 4:00 a.m. in the morning. As I was running, I saw what appeared as a very slow shooting star. The tail was side but almost a white spray; the head of the shooting star was rather large that illuminated a green/blue light on it. It was almost going in slow motion. I’ve seen a lot of shooting stars due to the time that I work out, but I have NEVER seen such a sight as this. The head of this shooting meteor was large, and the lighting on it (blue/green) was magnificent. It suddenly faded like most shooting stars. I live in central Illinois — Decatur, Illinois to be exact. I will never forget this sighting.

    Reply to Robin
  • KAREN HAMBY 6 months ago

    Saw a green fireball in Tuscaloosa, AL last night around 5:45 traveling very fast over McFarland Blvd towards Skyland Blvd. I thought it was a plane coming down. It was very bright and seemed to be low.

    Reply to KAREN
  • Petra schmidt 6 months ago

    In the Night about 2 :30 i was a Lightning in East Direktion driving North Germany. I could see a red strong glooming firestripe after the big light. It was at the eights of november.

    Reply to Petra
  • Jamie Mamikunian 6 months ago

    I saw one on 11/11 at approximately 7 pm PST at the junction between hwy 280 and hwy 85 in Nornthern California. It fizzled out just above the freeway!

    Reply to Jamie
  • Ginger Hipszky 6 months ago

    At 9:27pm on Nov. 10, 2015 I saw an odd sight. I saw a glowing, incandescent white-blue ball of light. It was about half way up the sky, Tauris was above it. This thing was moving south to north, sort of following the earth’s curve. Slower than a usual meteorite but faster than ISS going over. It had to have been a fireball. It looked big, like basketball size.
    I live in the NW side of Colorado Springs. I was looking east when I saw this. At the time I couldn’t see a smoke trail because of some high, thin clouds.
    Just got a call back from the National Weather Service in Pueblo. I had called to see if there was any weird weather that could cause ball-lightening. He told me about this site and that I should report what I saw. It was the coolest thing I have ever seen.

    Reply to Ginger
  • Sandi Fries 6 months ago

    I witnessed one just this evening in Belleville Illinois around 7:15 p.m. central time heading in a westerly direction. It was very low, with a long bright white tail, and the head was very large and bright white. It almost appeared as if it was rotating and moved at what seemed slowly but picked up speed and was gone in about 30 seconds. I have never seen a meteorite this low in the sky and so close. Made me wonder if it made impact.

    Reply to Sandi
  • Austin barney 6 months ago

    I saw a huge fireball in houston texas off of 610 south and Bellaire. I saw it in the sky to the south. It was followed by a smaller flash.

    Reply to Austin
  • Dan 6 months ago

    Saw a big one going down on 664-S, after getting off the bridge-tunnel over in Virginia. It was somewhere about 12:45-01:00am November 13th. It appeared at the top of the sky and zoomed straight down very quickly in a line and very bright.

    It was bright gold/white. It honestly reminded me of a firework as it shoots up before exploding…except this went from top to bottom, the stream was much thicker and far brighter, and it appeared to be moving really fast. It was quite amazing!

    Reply to Dan
  • Melea Tucker 6 months ago

    Coming home from a play last night in our very small town and the road we went on had no lights all of a sudden i see a giant greenish bluish fireball rage from the sky and split I thought we were being attacked! Texas, Montgomery

    Reply to Melea
  • Julie 6 months ago

    Last night between 9:30 and 10:00 I seen a huge fireball in the northern Missouri sky. I was amazed. I also seen a huge meteor at around 8:30 in the sky but nothing as impressive as the one later. WOW

    Reply to Julie
  • Diane 6 months ago

    3 of us saw on on November 8th, in Dracut MA at about 10pm.

    Reply to Diane
  • Justin 6 months ago

    I saw four on the way to work this morning at 0330 in central MN

    Reply to Justin
  • Daniel Bauhaus 6 months ago

    I just saw one here in Geel, Belgium at 00:35 it was like a fireball. Sad I didn’t recorded cause it was amazing!!!!!!!

    Reply to Daniel
  • Pamela Gann 6 months ago

    My husband and myself live in Duncanville Alabama and we saw what we thought was a huge star fall directly to the earth on Wednesday evening around 6-6:30 pm.

    Reply to Pamela
  • Artemis 6 months ago

    Saw one in NE Ohio at 8:20 PM flying across the big dipper. Heard 5- 6 others before I got outside. I dunno why they made noise.

    Reply to Artemis
    • Lisa Barnes 6 months ago

      I seen a neon sparkling green ball of light about 3 weeks ago. I live in New Carlisle Ohio. I suffer with insomnia, so I was watching tv. I just happen to look at the window and through the curtain I seen this beautiful glowing green light. It fell from the sky and actually landed in my street, I lost sight of it when it fell behind a car. There was no sound when it hit the street.It was around 5:30 and 6:00 a.m.

      Reply to Lisa
  • Joshua Buck 6 months ago

    My daughter, and I seen a falling star come down in or town and it was white very small and just faded out about 20 feet from the houses /ground so it seemed . Was cool we both saw it at same time . I said make a wish Jazmine 😉

    Reply to Joshua
    • Joshua Buck 6 months ago

      This was about 6:20pm in rasp Peoria Illinois btw :)

      Reply to Joshua
  • Virginia Colandrea 6 months ago

    I saw a large meteor to the east in san diego county at approximately 7:45 pm (guessing) november 14, 2015. It appeared to come straight down.

    Reply to Virginia
  • Scott P 6 months ago

    This makes sense to me now. I am accustomed to seeing a small meteor once every couple years, a fireball once every 5-10. Suddenly, I’ve seen four fireballs between 11/7 and 11/15 (only one or two of which I thought was were Orionids). And I don’t even look for them. I am out at night a lot, but not any more than normal. The swarm has got my attention, tho, and I’ve started a notebook with my sightings to record here!

    Reply to Scott
  • S Stephenson 6 months ago

    I saw one in the southern sky in Arizona Nov. 14, 2015 going from East to West. Big white point with blue, green and yellow tail around 9:00 pm AZ time.

    Reply to S
  • Megan Bergman 6 months ago

    I saw one Sunday, November 15, 2015 at around 9:00 p.m., 45 miles North of Minneapolis, MN. (Isanti, MN)

    Reply to Megan
  • Andrew 6 months ago

    I seen one at wal mart in Wilmington ohio and three on i-75 last night and for the past couple of weeks on i-75 in about the same area i see 1-3 about every other night

    Reply to Andrew
  • Julie 6 months ago

    I saw a huge meteor coming out of the sky on 11-10-15 approximately at 2:40am in Fountain Valley, CA. It had a glowing green tail, with a huge (basket ball size) white firey ball. It seemed like it was in slow motion, it lasted so long, and then the bright light suddenly burned out. It was an amazing sight!

    Reply to Julie
  • Joycelynn Maes 6 months ago

    Last night, November 17, 2015, at about 6:00 pm, my son and I saw what must have been a fireball, from the descriptions I have just read about. I know it wasn’t like anything I have ever seen before. Not at all like a shooting star, that look so far away and are quickly gone. This was visible for much longer and if it had not been for the mountain so close to us we would have saw it for much longer. It was also low in the horizon traveling from the south towards the western skies and following the curve of the earth as someone else described. The head of it was large and full of brilliant orangish white and reddish color. The length of the tail was four to five times the length of the head of it. The color of the tail was pure white sparkles like in the cartoons. It was amazing and very special to see it with my son. We witnessed this in Larimer County, Colorado in the foothills.

    Reply to Joycelynn
  • Jen 6 months ago

    Just saw one southern Indiana it was huge!

    Reply to Jen
  • Heather 6 months ago

    I saw a long tail fireball last night November 19 at about 8:50 pm west of Houston. My first and it was amazing!

    Reply to Heather
  • Chloe 6 months ago

    Me and my sister saw one last night in central Illinois. Neither one of us knew what it could be but we saw a post on Facebook about another woman who saw it so I decided to investigate. It started out as a green light and then turned in a red-orange fireball type thing once it got closer to ground. So cool to see!

    Reply to Chloe
  • Vanessa 6 months ago

    Just saw the coolest “fireball” or what I thought was called a shooting star but unlike anything I’ve actually ever seen. It was really bright and long and broke apart with what appeared to be sparks flying from it. All I could do was say “wow!” I live in Englewood Colorado and thought I’d Google it to see if anyone else saw it when I noticed this website and thought I would report it. It was around 5:30 pm and seemed to go slowly from east to west and go more horizontal like it was cutting through the sky. Seriously, the coolest thing I’ve ever seen!

    Reply to Vanessa
    • Jerry McLean 6 months ago

      I also saw this one, along with two other people.We live in the south-west part of Denver. It moved very slowly compared with shooting stars I have seen, long tail and sparks or pieces coming from it It was very low in the sky and look about the size of a quarter from where we stood even though I know it was many miles away. Finally ran out of fire and watched it drop somewhere west of us.

      Reply to Jerry
  • brandon everhart 6 months ago

    Very big relatively slow close fireball looking like a bright firework falling from the sky; slightly falling apart as it descended; seen the last 2.5 seconds of its descent while pulling into home driveway; blue-green, 11 23 2015 somewhere between 6 and 6:30pm eastern standard time Lexington, NC. Meteor was seen to my North falling straight down to the far horizon slightly westward trajectory. I dont see that anyone else has reported it; maybe it was that that close? I have trees so it was hard to gauge just how far away it was. I need to register; I’m a constant sky gazer when nights are clear and I am out driving or walking in the night.
    -Brandon

    Reply to brandon
  • Nicole Cancasci 6 months ago

    Jus saw one last night !! Sounds 8pm in antelope valley ca it was crazy !

    Reply to Nicole
  • Katie 6 months ago

    I have seen 2 of these now in IL about 30 miles from St. Louis. The first was about 2 weeks ago I think November 12 at approximately 2145. I was coming home from work and it was so quick, I wasn’t sure what I was seeing. Last night November 26 at 2011 I saw it again, but this was a bigger and brighter green fireball with a tail. It was amazing! Called my husband right away, so I know the time is pretty exact on that one.

    Reply to Katie
  • Thesa 6 months ago

    We saw it too. Nov 30, around 9pm. The color was really same as that in the picture. That was amazing!!! :)

    Reply to Thesa
  • BAP 6 months ago

    I saw one very big and bright near Joplin, MO,,–Northbound 71 HWY to KC around on December 24, 2015 around 1:45am.

    Reply to BAP
  • Robin Steadman 6 months ago

    I witnessed one last fall (2015) early in the morning; this morning (April 8, 2016)I witnessed another one at 4:10 a.m. (I work out outside in the mornings). I work at Millikin University in Decatur, Illinois. I consulted one of our Physics professors both times. Today he indicated it will peak next week. It’s an amazing event to see.

    Reply to Robin

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