Meteor lights-up the skies over the UK green on St Patrick’s Day (VIDEO)
Footage from Church Crookham, Hampshire, was taken by the UK Meteor Observation Network.
“This is the biggest meteor sighting we have recorded. It lasted for a few seconds. It was seen for hundreds of miles. We have received a number of emails,” Network member Richard Kacerek told the BBC.
Witnesses reported two large flashes of light as the meteor burned up in the atmosphere.
“It was actually two explosions from the same meteor – a smaller one and the larger one – signals that the final one has potential a fragment surviving and falling to the earth,” Kacerek told the Mirror.
Astronomers are almost certain the meteor was a piece of cosmic rock from the asteroid belt between Jupiter and Mars.
Incidents like this usually happen unseenover oceans and uninhabited landmasses, but this particular fireball was seen vividly over cities including London.
Kacerek said reports of green flashes are most likely genuine.
“It is a very highly heated rock because it passes through the atmosphere then it picks up heat and speed and depending on this the gas or light refractions can be seen as green.”
“Lots of people are reporting the green one – this is completely plausible,” Kacerek told the Mirror.
Dr John Mason, from the British Astronomical Association, explained to the BBC that green flashes were probably caused by the meteor’s magnesium composition heating up the oxygen surrounding it.
Meteors like this are not “uncommon,” but the brightness of the fireball was still “spectacular,” Mason added.