As of Tuesday morning, the American Meteor Society had received 90 reports about a fireball seen over Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania on Feb. 25 around 02:13 UTC (Feb. 24 around 7:13 p.m. EST). One EarthSky friend on Facebook, Shannon N Brannigan, wrote:
A very big fireball just lit-up the eastern seaboard at 9:14pm est. It was heading south from the Albany, NY area.
Some on EarthSky Facebook commented that this was the second bright meteor seen over the U.S. East in as many days.
Astronomers call a very bright meteor a fireball. It’s a natural event that happens often, given Earth as a whole, a chunk of space debris that enters Earth’s atmosphere and burns up due to friction with the air.
We hear many people say that these bright meteors, or fireballs are happening more and more, but there’s no evidence this is the case. In fact, they are being reported more and more through excellent online reporting services such as the American Meteor Society.
Bottom line: As of Tuesday morning, the American Meteor Society had received 90 reports about this fireball seen over CT, DE, MD, NJ, NY and PA on Feb. 25 around 02:13 UTC (Feb. 24 around 7:13 p.m. EST).
Deborah Byrd created the EarthSky radio series in 1991 and founded EarthSky.org in 1994. Today, she serves as Editor-in-Chief of this website. She has won a galaxy of awards from the broadcasting and science communities, including having an asteroid named 3505 Byrd in her honor. A science communicator and educator since 1976, Byrd believes in science as a force for good in the world and a vital tool for the 21st century. "Being an EarthSky editor is like hosting a big global party for cool nature-lovers," she says.