In the wee hours of Wednesday morning, a fiery space rock as bright as the full moon hurled through the sky above Ontario, sending out bright flares at the end of its celestial journey near Bancroft.
By Jeanna Bryner | LiveScience
The Western University All-Sky Camera Network picked up the fireball at 2:44 a.m. ET (July 24) across southern Ontario and Quebec. The fireball — which is a meteor that is unusually bright — was about 400,000 times fainter than the sun, or about the brightness of the full moon, according to Sky & Telescope. From the astronomers‘ analysis, they think the meteoroid that created the fireball was about the size of a small beachball, or nearly 12 inches (30 centimeters) across.
When these meteors reach Earth’s atmosphere, both friction from the atmosphere and the bow shock that forms in front of the space rock heat it up. The result? The fireball can break apart into fragments. [See Photos of a Meteor Explosion Over Russia]