March 15, 2021
A bright fireball traveling nearly 42,000 miles per hour ripped through the sky above Vermont recently, sending buildings swaying and enveloping nearby Vermonters in shock.
NASA Meteor Watch said the object appeared 52 miles above Mount Mansfield State Forest around 5:38 p.m. EST, and more than 100 people in Vermont and Canada saw it.
It headed deep into the atmosphere as pressure built on the front of it, forming a partial vacuum at the back of it, hence creating pressure fluctuations greater than the structural strength.
"The space rock fragmented violently, producing a pressure wave that rattled buildings and generated the sound heard by those near the trajectory," NASA stated in a Facebook post.
NASA noted that such a wave of pressure could cause minor tremors on the surface. Using infrared measurements, scientists determined the object weighed around 10 lbs. and was 6 inches in diameter.
NASA noted that the display is an excellent example of Mother Nature's craftsmanship. Several people in the comments of their post see the fireball, some of whom say they are confused as to what it is.
The UK has experienced a similar phenomenon earlier this month.
One woman shared she thought it was a missile, remarking that it was gone almost in the blink of an eye. It was so impressive that she was able to see it, the woman said.
In another witness account, a sonic boom was heard about 90 seconds after seeing it from his window in Colchester. He described it as being super bright white and broken up into little pieces.
The vibrant yellow-green fireball enthralled watchers in the UK and Netherlands.
Story of one of those who witnessed the meteor. | Photo: Facebook/NasaMeteorWatch
Al Gregoritsch, a South Burlington resident, was about eight miles away and said in an interview that he saw it but did not hear any sound. The phenomenon was unforgettable, he said.
NASA learned that the object burned up above Beach Hill in Orleans County after traveling 33 miles through the upper atmosphere. The UK has experienced a similar phenomenon earlier this month.
The vibrant yellow-green fireball enthralled watchers in the UK and Netherlands. Perhaps it may have made its way to Earth in meteorites, where it most likely landed just north of Cheltenham.
Fireballs have amused scientists for so long since they can provide data about the solar system. The meteors are consumed during their ascent to Earth's surface that results in a meteorite.