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Ursa Astronomical Association

A fireball at night, brighter than a full moon - 23.1.2016 at 20.11 Lahti Observation number 48117

Visibility V / V

Samuli Ikäheimo, Lahden Ursa

I was on the street cleaning a car out of the snow when the whole environment flashed a bluish light. The first thought was either lightning in the clouds, a transformer arc, or fireworks. However, a quick glance at the surroundings did not reveal the cause of the flash, so the trade trip was allowed to continue.

The spouse commented on the flash: "like a single flash of a police flashing light, a familiar blue but too wide-ranging."

The estimate of the brightness (fireball at night, brighter than a full moon) is based on the fact that just a moment earlier I was circling the full moon that was visible from time to time through the cloud curtain, it was very dim, remaining sometimes invisible behind the clouds. Although I did not see the fireball, its flash was strong enough to illuminate the surrounding moon and street lights brighter.

Hopefully the fireball cameras have even captured some image for flight path calculations. If the flash did not take place too low, one could think that such a brightness was visible even in neighboring countries, weather permitting.

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Additional information
  • Accuracy of the given observation time?
    • 5 min difference possible
  • How long time did you see the fireball fly in the sky?
    • Not known
  • How the flight of the fireball ended?
    • I did not see the end of the fireball
  • Brightness of the fireball
    • A fireball at night, brighter than a full moon
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