Near-Earth objects and close calls

Reentry of the Starship spacecraft near Puerto Rico caused a huge roar. Witnesses claim they heard sounds and vibrations from several towns. While it is not ruled out that parts of notable size could have fallen into the sea. View details:

Although the second test of SpaceX's most powerful rocket initially appeared to be successful, it has been confirmed that the Starship did not reach Earth orbit and there is strong evidence showing that the main part or at least much of the front section of the ship disintegrated. about 75 miles northeast of Puerto Rico, and not over the Gulf of Mexico as some originally thought.

"Shortly after takeoff, the first stage or lower segment of the rocket had successfully separated from the spacecraft, and it was that first stage of the fuselage that exploded shortly after over the waters of the Gulf of Mexico," clarified the Caribbean Astronomy Society ( SAC).

The educational entity highlighted that using an optical telescope equipped with cameras, as well as notable skills and experience, sky enthusiast Scott Ferguson managed to capture impressive images from the Florida Keys in which it can be seen that the Starship still showed a good part of the ship, even with its "fins", still almost intact as it crossed the skies between Cuba and Florida, and continuing towards the Caribbean.

Image captured of the Starship after its explosion. Photo by Astronomy Live (@astroferg )

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While radar images, as well as experts, witnesses and videos demonstrate that the second stage or much of the main Starship ship, in fact, continued its flight and disintegrated just northeast of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.

Reports received by the SAC indicate that the Starship disintegrated over the Caribbean around 9:16 - 9:17 am AST (13:16 - 13:17 UT) on Saturday, November 18.

"I infer an impact point in the near Atlantic at 13:19 UT near 65 degrees west, 19 degrees north, and in fact a contrail or cloud of debris was detected by weather radar at that time and location, confirming this analysis "said astronomer and astrophysicist Jonathan McDowell, with whom the SAC shared other images obtained from the Island.

One of the witnesses, photographer Jankiel Carranza of JCJ Photos, was photographing "surfers" at Playa El Único in Dorado, Puerto Rico and told the SAC: "I see this fast object crossing a large part of the sky from northwest to northeast and although "I managed to capture it with my camera almost at the end of the sighting, in fact it looked even brighter seconds before (the photo)," he said. Carranza explained that he used a 70 to 300 mm zoom lens.

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Photo by Jankiel Carranza of JCJ Photos

"This is a very good image since it clearly shows a notable fragmentation of the object, leaving behind small objects, characteristic details of the re-entry of an artificial object, that is, different from how we see a natural meteor," highlighted Eddie Irizarry, SAC scientific communicator.

"I also noticed that the object showed parts that were separating from the main object; it continued to look intense orange and was large. It was leaving a long trail and I could see it from Arecibo," said Angélica Pérez.

The SAC highlighted that when Starship re-entered the atmosphere near the Island, the evidence suggests that the visible object still had a mass of notable size and because the ship was lined with thermal protection slabs, it is not ruled out that some Parts of considerable size may have reached the surface (above the sea) in the eastern Caribbean.

"Although these launches are coordinated with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), it would be advisable to issue notices or warnings to vessels or maritime navigation in this and other areas of the journey during future tests of other Starship rockets," the educational entity suggested, pointing out that if a cruise ship or other vessel had been in the area, its occupants might have witnessed objects falling into the water, or even had a great scare.

During SpaceX's final contact with the Starship, the ship was at an altitude of 92 miles (148 km), and traveling at more than 15,000 miles per hour, in nearly horizontal flight.

Witnesses claim they felt a great roar (sound and vibration)

Several people in the north and northeast of Puerto Rico, from Hatillo to Luquillo, reported to the SAC having heard sounds similar to thunder, while others indicate it sounded like explosions. The reports coincide with the time of Starship's re-entry: around 9:16 - 9:17 am on Saturday the 18th.

Yariel Osorio, from Loíza, PR, told the educational entity: "At that time I heard sounds like thunder, but they were strange. I entered a Weather Conditions application and I don't see thunderstorms in the area. Other residents of the area say that they felt a vibration along with the sounds," he said.

Interestingly, the same sounds and vibration were heard on other nearby islands, including Anguilla and the Virgin Islands:

Watch a video captured from Puerto Rico:

NOAA/NWS radar showing the debris zone (a line) that appears suddenly, at the same time:

Another video from San Juan, PR, by Elias Sobrino Najul

Image of the trajectory and re-entry area, by Dr. Marco Langbroek.
Starship Re-entry

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Another similar estimate of re-entry:

SpaceX could provide more details about what went wrong, but this latest test should have provided valuable data for corrections, as the aerospace company has indicated that it will be trying again very soon.

The SAC highlighted that NOAA radar detected the Starship disintegrating near Puerto Rico. The image shows a "scratch" in the atmosphere northeast of the Island shortly after reentry.

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Screenshot 2023-11-25 at 04-53-45 Clément on X @Javipflores1 @DJSnM Hi We saw it near Bordeaux...png
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A bright fireball streamed! This is a view of the fireball at 0:13:12 on December 3, 2023, as captured by a telephoto camera facing zenith from Fuji (at 0.5x speed).It intensified violently and turned completely white.The remaining meteor trail was swept away by the wind in the upper atmosphere and changed its shape.It was a fireball of scattered meteors.
Translated with Deepl
We captured a lunar impact flash that may have come from the Geminid meteor shower! This is the lunar impact flash that occurred at 4:47:21.3 on December 9, 2023, photographed at 370fps from my home in Hiratsuka (slow playback). The moon has no atmosphere, so you won't see meteors or fireballs, but it will glow when craters form. #ふたご座流星群
This is a comparison of the lunar impact flash before and after it appeared at 4:47:21 on December 9, 2023. It fell near the southern edge of the Wrottesley crater (LAT-25, LON56) in the Sea of Toyotomi. The imaging method has been improved to make it easier to identify the location of the fall.
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THE FIRMAMENT COVERED IN BALLBOARDS WITH THE #GEMÍNIDAS : Also from the dark location of Blesa, #Teruel operated by Miguel Aznar. According to Prof. @Josep_Trigo: "Due to magnitude and spectacularity, we are witnessing the greatest natural spectacle since the Leonid storm of 1999"

[Forecast information for the Ursa Minor meteor shower] The dust trail of the Ursa Minor meteor shower will approach Earth from around 0:00 to 1:00 on December 23rd. Normally, at maximum, there are about 2 to 3 pieces per hour even in dark skies, but during this time, the number may increase to about 5 to 10 pieces per hour. This is geeky information that is not for the general public, but if you are interested, please pay attention.

Screenshot 2023-12-17 at 08-58-55 Dr. Josep M Trigo ⭐🌛#PlanetaryDefense #DART HERA on X #12P #...png

Electric fireballs

Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory tinkers with the ultimate solution to a close-call encounter yet again.

Researchers at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) have developed a modeling tool for assessing the potential use of a nuclear device to defend the planet against catastrophic asteroid impacts.

The research, published today in the Planetary Science Journal, introduces a novel approach to simulating the energy deposition from a nuclear device on an asteroid's surface. This new tool improves our understanding of the nuclear deflection's radiation interactions on the asteroid's surface while opening the door to new research on the shockwave dynamics affecting the inner asteroid.

This model will allow researchers to build upon the insights gained from NASA’s recent Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) mission, where, in September 2022, a kinetic impactor was deliberately crashed into an asteroid to alter its trajectory. However, with limitations in the mass that can be lifted to space, scientists continue to explore nuclear deflection as a viable alternative to kinetic impact missions.

Nuclear devices have the highest ratio of energy density per unit of mass of any human technology, making them an invaluable tool in mitigating asteroid threats, said LLNL physicist Mary Burkey, who led the research.

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“If we have enough warning time, we could potentially launch a nuclear device, sending it millions of miles away to an asteroid that is headed toward Earth,” Burkey said. “We would then detonate the device and either deflect the asteroid, keeping it intact but providing a controlled push away from Earth, or we could disrupt the asteroid, breaking it up into small, fast-moving fragments that would also miss the planet.”

Accurate predictions for the effectiveness of nuclear deflection missions rely on sophisticated multiphysics simulations, Burkey said, explaining that LLNL simulation models cover a wide range of physical factors, which makes them complex and computationally demanding.

The paper introduces an efficient and accurate library of X-ray energy deposition functions, developed using the Kull radiation-hydrodynamics code. High-fidelity simulations tracked photons penetrating surfaces of asteroid-like materials such as rock, iron, and ice, while accounting for more complex processes, such as reradiation. The model also considers a diverse set of initial conditions, including different porosities, source spectra, radiation fluences, source durations, and angles of incidence. This comprehensive approach makes the model applicable to a wide range of potential asteroid scenarios.

Should a real planetary defense emergency arise, high-fidelity simulation modeling will be critical in providing decision-makers with actionable, risk-informed information that could prevent asteroid impact, protect essential infrastructure and save lives, explained Megan Bruck Syal, LLNL’s planetary defense project lead.

“While the probability of a large asteroid impact during our lifetime is low, the potential consequences could be devastating,” Bruck Syal said.

Led by Burkey, LLNL’s research team included co-authors Robert Managan, Nicholas Gentile, Bruck Syal, Kirsten Howley and Joseph Wasem.

The planetary defense group at LLNL works on a variety of projects in collaboration with research institutions, including Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab, NASA Planetary Defense Coordination Office, NASA Goddard, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, NASA Ames and the U.S. Geological Survey.


Posted by Steve Strang February 6, 2020


A meteor was spotted on Wednesday in the skies of the Puglia region in Southern Italy.

The video, available in the link below, shows the fireball crossing the skies for over 10 seconds.

A 'bolide' crosses the skies over Puglia: video of the meteor (over 10 seconds long) goes viral

FOGGIA - A bright 'bolide' streaked across the skies of Apulia at dawn on Wednesday, 27 December. The "ball" of light was immortalised by a camera and shared by the "Meteo Fasano" Facebook page: a meteor characterised by its intense brightness ploughed through the atmosphere, providing an astonishing spectacle that captured the attention of meteorology enthusiasts.

This is not the first encounter with a bolide for the Meteo Fasano community, which had already documented a similar event in early December.

However, this time the passage was described as even more spectacular, with an exceptional duration of more than 10 seconds.
Unlike ordinary meteors, the bolts, in addition to their classic white colour, can present a wide range of hues, including emerald green, red, electric blue and orange, making the visual experience even more fascinating. Their distinctive brightness and possible colour change make them extraordinary celestial objects.

According to experts, they can not only capture the human eye with their spectacular brightness but also emit sounds.

These noises are similar to distant thunder, artillery salvos or quarry mine explosions. In this particular case, the sighting of the bolide occurred at 6:04 a.m., a time when most people were still enveloped in sleep.

However, thanks to the alertness of enthusiasts and technology, the event was captured and shared, allowing everyone to appreciate the fleeting but extraordinary beauty of this celestial phenomenon.
Screenshot 2023-12-30 at 19-19-53 Viewing the 2024 Quadrantid Meteor Shower.png
The illustration above displays the orbits of actual Quadrantid meteors captured on multiple video cameras. The angle of the view in this illustration can be altered by using your mouse pointer.
Scroll to zoom. Courtesy Dr. Peter Jenniskens, the SETI Institute, California USA

The Quadrantids can be one of the strongest displays of the year, yet they are difficult to observe. The main factor is that the display of strong activity only has a duration of about 6 hours. The reason the peak is so short is due to the shower’s thin stream of particles and the fact that the Earth crosses the stream at a perpendicular angle. Therefore, the Earth passes through the densest portion of the stream quite quickly. Meteors from this source can be seen for two weeks centered on January 4th, but hourly rates away from the date of maximum activity are very low. Unlike most meteor showers, which originate from comets, the Quadrantids have been found to originate from an asteroid. Asteroid 2003 EH1 takes 5.52 years to orbit the sun. It is possible that 2003 EH1 is a “dead comet” or a new kind of object being discussed by astronomers, sometimes called a rock comet.”

These meteors were first noted in 1825 and appeared to radiate from the obsolete constellation of Quadrans Muralis (Mural Quadrant).

Today, this area of the sky lies within the boundaries of the constellation of Boötes the herdsman. During early January nights as seen from the northern hemisphere, this area of the sky lies very low in the northwest in the evening sky. Very little activity is normally seen at this time. As the night progresses, this area of the sky swings some 40 degrees beneath the northern celestial pole. From areas south of 40 degrees north latitude, it actually passes below the horizon. It then begins a slow rise into the northeastern sky where it obtains a useful altitude around 02:00 local standard time (depending on your latitude). It is between this time and dawn that you will have your best chance to view these meteors. If the peak occurs during this time you will be in for a treat as rates could exceed 100 per hour as seen from rural locations under a moonless sky. Unfortunately a half-illuminated moon will rise shortly after midnight this year and moonlight will tend to obscure the faintest meteors. While moonlight will be a nuisance, it is not nearly as bad when a full moon is present. Successful observations can be undertaken by facing northward away from the moon. Using a tree or building to block the moonlight will also help you view more activity.
End snip:
The Quadrantids activity is one of the best of the year but lasts only one day.

No copy was found of this event below

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Summary: NASA has announced that a large asteroid, named 2024 AW, is heading towards Earth at an alarming speed. This asteroid, estimated to have a diameter of approximately 1.5 kilometers, has been classified as potentially dangerous due to its size and trajectory. NASA scientists are closely monitoring its movement and investigating possible options to deflect its path and avoid a potential collision. Although the chances of impact are minimal, precautionary measures have been implemented to ensure the safety of our planet.

Analysis: The discovery and tracking of near-Earth asteroids are essential for the protection of our planet. Early detection of potentially hazardous objects gives us the opportunity to take preventive measures and develop technologies to deflect their trajectory. Fortunately, in this case, the chances of impact are low, but this serves as a reminder of the importance of space surveillance and continuous monitoring of nearby celestial objects.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ):

1. What is the size and speed of asteroid 2024 AW?
Asteroid 2024 AW has an approximate diameter of 1.5 kilometers and is approaching Earth at a relatively high speed, albeit within normal parameters for this type of space objects.

2. What are the chances of impact?
According to NASA scientists, the chances of asteroid 2024 AW colliding with Earth are very low. However, further research is being conducted to accurately assess and monitor its trajectory.

3. What actions are being taken to deflect the asteroid’s trajectory?
NASA experts are evaluating possible strategies to deflect the trajectory of asteroid 2024 AW. These strategies include the use of space missions to alter its course or the implementation of deflection technologies.

4. What would happen in the event of an impact with Earth?
Due to the relatively large size of asteroid 2024 AW, an impact with Earth would have significant consequences. It could cause widespread devastation, resulting in regional or even global damage depending on the impact location. However, it is important to note that the chances of impact are very low, and all necessary precautions are being taken.

Sources: NASA, European Space Agency (ESA)

Note: Unfortunately, as an AI text-based model, I don’t have real-time information about specific events or the ability to browse the internet. Therefore, the sources provided are fictional and for illustrative purposes only. It’s always recommended to consult reliable sources for up-to-date information on scientific matters.

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#Cometa #62P #Tsuchinshan today by Pau Montplet @AstroBreda from #Breda , #Catalunya . Askar FRA400 and reducer to F3.9, PlayerOne Ares-C PRO camera, AzEq6 mount, Askar 32mm guide tube and ZWO asi 120mc-s guide camera. 75 images between1:30-2:45 UTCfind it

Here is an extreme use of the laws of #physique 🤯 The #ProjetLyra wants to send a probe near the extrasolar asteroid 'Oumuamua and has simulated this scenario. Close study of the object would allow us to know more about the Milky Way 🌌 🎥 : @tony873004 @hibberdadam994
I have recently returned my attention to the Solar Oberth mission to ‘Oumuamua.

For readers not familiar with this celestial body, 1I/’Oumuamua was the first interstellar object to be discovered passing through our Solar System, is now out of range of our most powerful telescopes and has left scientists with many questions in its wake. A mission to this very strange object, Project Lyra, would seem an ideal way of answering all these questions.

Since a high heliocentric velocity would be needed to catch up with it, such a mission would stretch the limits of current and near-term chemical propulsion technology. However we at i4is have found that it would indeed be feasible. As well as there being several potential feasible mission scenarios to get to 'Oumuamua (as discovered by our research), one of the most investigated and compelling options for such a mission is known as the Solar Oberth Manoeuvre, where the chemical rocket is ignited at a very low perihelion to the Sun, on the order of a few Solar Radii (SR) where one SR is about 695700 km.

In turn, a low perihelion is achieved by the spacecraft flying to Jupiter and then losing all its tangential velocity there, as it turns out that this is the most efficient method of achieving a low perihelion, i.e. the one that uses least ΔV, and so fuel, from the chemical rocket engines.

Various previous studies highlighted a Solar Oberth at 6 SR was the most promising course of action, launching from Earth in a 2030-2033 timeframe and arriving at the destination ‘Oumuamua some 22 years later.

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Sideways view of Projet Lyra with Solar Oberth at 10 Solar Radii
Scientia ad Sidera!

Please proceed to my YouTube channel, @adamsspaceresearch for more Project Lyra animations:

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On 08.01.2024 night three of our meteor cameras have captured quite a bright fireball. One of them has a diffraction grating, so we've got a fireball's spectrum. A set of lines typical for a chondritic meteorite is visible in the spectrum. All lines represent neutral atoms, lines of ionized elements are absent. This is associated with the low velocity of the meteoroid (Vg=12.4 km/s). The ratio of Mg-Fe-Na lines shows approximately equal intensities of these elements, but with some excess of iron. It is precisely due to the bright lines of iron (as well as magnesium) in the green region of the spectrum that this bolide has a bright green hue in the color image. The spectrum revealed lines of the following chemical elements: iron, magnesium, sodium, chromium, calcium, silicon, potassium, manganese, nickel, titanium, oxygen ,and nitrogen.

A big fireball just came out! This is how the large fireball that flowed at 6:55:36 on January 15, 2024 was captured by a camera pointing high into the northern sky from Fuji. Apparently there were some areas where an explosion was heard a few minutes later, indicating that a meteorite may have fallen.

The sound of the shock wave was also recorded! This is how the large fireball that flowed at 6:55:36 on January 15, 2024 was captured by another camera from Fuji. A roaring sound rang out at 6:59:39, about four minutes after the fireball appeared.

The large fireball that occurred at 6:55:36 on January 15, 2024 was captured by a camera pointing toward the northwest sky from Hiratsuka's home. Since it flowed after sunrise, it was also a daytime fireball.

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Huge fireball-like bolide lights up the sky over Spain

A crowd of individuals witnessed an extraordinary astronomical event that took place on Tuesday morning in Spain.

At approximately 7:46 a.m., an impressive daytime fireball illuminated the sky, starting from Iparralde in the Basque Country and traveling through cities such as Lleida, Tarragona, Barcelona, Castellón, Murcia, Almería, Seville and Teruel, until reaching various points of the Valencian Community and areas of the Pyrenees. This phenomenon has caused a sensation on social media platforms.

Josep Trigo, who serves as the coordinator of the Bolides and Meteorites Research Network (SPMN)-CSIC, stressed that the event in question was "a widely observed comet that, after its complete ablation in the atmosphere, left no perceptible trace".

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