Nearly 50 reports so far
The AMS received nearly 50 reports so far about a fireball event that occurred over Arizona on February 16th, 2020 around 12:33 UT (05:33 MST). The AMS #2020-980 event was mainly seen from the Arizona but we also received reports from California, New Mexico and Utah.
If you witnessed this event and/or if you have a video or a photo of this event, please
Submit an Official Fireball Report
If you want to learn more about Fireballs: read our Fireball FAQ.
Trajectory, Velocity and Videos
The preliminary trajectory computed based on all the reports submitted to the AMS so far shows that the fireball was travelling very fast from
North West to South East and ended its flight somewhere over the Mazatzal Peak (highest point in the Mazatzal Mountains).
So far, we received one video of the event and luckily enough, AMS AllSkyCam Operator Robert Ward from Prescott AZ caught it too!
Several thousand meteors of fireball magnitude occur in the Earth’s atmosphere each day. The vast majority of these, however, occur over the oceans and uninhabited regions, and a good many are masked by daylight. Those that occur at night also stand little chance of being detected due to the relatively low numbers of persons out to notice them.
Additionally, the brighter the fireball, the more rare is the event. As a general thumb rule, there are only about 1/3 as many fireballs present for each successively brighter magnitude class, following an exponential decrease. Experienced observers can expect to see only about 1 fireball of magnitude -6 or better for every 200 hours of meteor observing, while a fireball of magnitude -4 can be expected about once every 20 hours or so.