Fireball reports

Are these the same object?

Q. “Hi im from bateau bay n.s.w.tonight 6.20pm i saw a meteor going from west to east fizzing out over the sea could this be a fragment of yesterdays report of a near miss of a much larger object , my sighting showed a brilliant long tale slow moving”

A. The meteor you saw last night is unlikely to be associated with asteroid 2004 XP14 that passed relatively close to Earth on Monday as meteors are generally associated with comets. Comets have a trail of dust spread out along their path around the Sun and when the Earth intersects one of these dust streams we see a meteor shower. The one you saw was probably a sporadic meteor that can arrive any time from any direction.

Q. “Less than half an hour ago (it is now 6.55PM on6th July), my daughter and I saw quite an amazing meteorite (or I presume it was such). We were standing in Abbotsford and this ‘shooting star’, tail ablaze, came in in the opposite direction to and seemingly lower than, aircraft coming in to land. I have never seen one of these before. It seemed to be quite large and much lower on the horizon than an aircraft that came by several seconds later. Do you have any comment about this? Where did it land? The Observatory must have monitored it!”

A. What you saw does sound like a bright meteor or fireball, which is a small rock from space hitting the Earth’s atmosphere at high speed and burning up 40 or 50 kilometres above the Earth’s surface. If a piece of it survives the trip through the atmosphere that is a meteorite. Unfortunately, unless it actually lands by someone’s feet or is otherwise observed we do not know if any fragment did survive to become a meteorite. What you saw sounds spectacular and is possibly the same meteor that was seen by someone from Bateau Bay.

24 responses to “Fireball reports

  • I saw a meteroite very low in the sky shooting with a magnificent fire tail of brilliant colours at 05.40hrs on Thursday 24/5/12. I was in Silverdale NSW.

  • Hello people. Please do not post any more fireball reports here. Post them on the REPORT YOUR SIGHTINGS page, accessed through the rectangular black banner on the top right of this page. Thanks Nick

  • on Saturday 31 March at approx 8.15pm (during earth hour)
    i saw an orange ball falling towards land, it had a glittery orange tail and it took a good 10 -15 seconds before it disappeared. did anyone else see it. what was it. i live in Engadine in the sutherland shire

  • I live at Mosman and I saw a very large meteor at about 6.12 it broke into 2 and burned out very close to to the ground it appeared to me to be above the city. But it may have been further out.
    I have seen many meteors but this was the biggest and closest to the ground I have seen.

  • Yeap, I live in Newtown and hear a few planes but this one was louder than what l usually experience and lit the sky like l’ve never seen.

    I did however think it had to do with an aircraft and the Australia day celebrations – but what l saw was definately a fireball, if it was a F111 – l’ve never seen anything travel so quickly.

    Also looked for media reports but nothing!

  • We saw somethiing last night too….very odd.

    It wasnt at midnight though…it was around 9.30 last night. We live in Camperdown and heard what sounded like a plane flying low overhead, when I looked out the window we thought that it was a plane on fire, it was very loud and a large fire ball heading south, then it changed direction and the fire ball slowly faded…

    At first I thought it was part of the Aus Day fireworks display, but it was far too loud and too big. Anyone else see this one?

  • We saw that same ‘fireball’ from our deck in surry hills. We thought it was a rocket or a plane on fire and the sound was extremely loud. It traveled for as far as we could see and then fizzed out. We thought it would surely be in the media today, but couldn’t find any mention of it.
    Very interested to know what it was!

  • We saw it too! It was about midnight and we were looking over sydney airport when we suddenly saw this huge ball of fire moving quickly across the sky. it burned for at least 30 seconds and then slowly fizzled out until it died. what could it be? does anyone have any information?

  • i saw that ‘fireball’ across the sky from neutral bay from the water of neutral bay point.
    My question is that it was going at extreme pace compared to any commercial planes, and also had 3 lights on it as the fire wore down and then disspeared? explain anyone?

  • Tonight I (26/1/07) at nearly midnight I saw a huge ‘fireball’ travelling across the night sky. It was on fire until, about halfway, it fizzed out ( like many other reports) and began to glow red. It continued out of sight. I live in Balgowlah.

  • At around 7.30pm 12 October 2006, i witnessed a bright fire ball in the night sky. It lasted for about a second travelling from north to south in the Lindfield area. The object lit up and got brighter and fizzled out leaving a tail behind which disappeared not long after. I have never seen a shooting star in the city before and it was quite a spectacular sight. I would imagine that the object would have been fairly large to be so bright and last so long in what seemed to be a steep trajectory. Did anyone else see this?

  • I saw the same huge fireball from Marrickville, Henson Park. My sister spotted it, we heard no sound and it was moving in an easterly at around 7:15 pm 1st October 2006. We didn’t get any pictures or videos. The shape was like a comet with a tail and was bright orange in colour. My sister says she heard that it was a space rocket taking off???

  • have a look at the F-111. Move your mouse over the F-111 and see its fireball :o)http://www.defence.gov.au/raaf/airshow/aircraft.htm

  • after some googleing, i think it was a jet fighter.
    There is a RAAF airport in Richmond, Sydney. And….there will be the Richmond Air Show on 21-22 october. The direction of the airport suits the direction the object flew.

  • Hi,
    my classmate and me are students from Germany. We saw a huge fireball as well, standing in a park in Summer Hill, Sydney on 1st october 2006 about 9p.m.. it came from the north and flew into the direction to the airport. We estimatet the object to fly in approximately 1,5 km over the ground. At first we thought its a meteor or something, cause it was very bright and made no sound. But then we have heard something like a turbine sound. So we thought its a rocket, but there was no smoke left in the sky. Then the fireball disappeared and the object turned right. I think i saw some blinking lights, when the fire was gone. I suppose it was a jet fighter firing its afterburner (for 20 sec.??? very strange). Fortunately my friend took a picture. Will have you a look soon.

  • I observed the same huge fireball from Rosehill Gardens. Many people attending the Filipino Fiesta also saw it from the grandstand and we also heard the sound similar to a large jetliner (it could be heard above the sound of the music). However, from our perspective, it appeared to come from the south-east and move in a westerly direction as it disappeared from view behind the southern end of the grandstand. I can confirm that around 7:15 pm 1st October 2006 was the time of observation. I don’t know if anyone caught it on video (there were plenty of cameras around).

  • Myself and My Girlfriend both witnessed A Huge Fireball Travelling in an Easterly Direction over Blackwatlle Bay (Nr Pyrmont Sydney) at around 7:15pm on Sunday 1st October 2006.

    At first we thought it was an Airliner with an engine fire, it was incredibly bright, and close enough that we could hear it. It sounded like a large Jetliner, however after about 90 seconds the orange glow faded to nothing, and totally dissapeared. If this were a plane I would have expected to see a strobe light, but there was nothing, and the sky was perfectly clear (Many stars were visible) There was no visible smoke trail and we were surprised to hear nothing about it in the news, especially as it will have been clearly visible from Channel 10’s HQ in Pyrmont.

    My best guess would be the dump and burn of an F111, as part of the opening display for the NRL Final? – I know there was a debacle with some army parachitists at around this time. Can anyone else confer?

  • Hi we have just witnessed what looked like a huge fireball coming across the sky we live in the Bega Area the time is now 8.55pm we took video of the fireball. Has anyone else witnessed this also. We have witnessed the same object on another occassion at 4.00am last saturday. Thanks

  • I was driving home near Frenchs Forest approx 18:15 and saw the bright meteor also heading from southwest to the northeast. It was definitely the brightest and lowest meteor I have ever seen – really looked like it was going to hit the ground (somewhere near Narabeen !)it was so low. Spectacular. Found it strange that there were no reports of this in the mainstream media.

  • The previous 3 nights between 6pm & 6:30 I have seen something other than this fireball. This is the exact reason I was looking in that direction at the time of the fireball. Also again tonight rite on schedule. You have to look hard but just scan the sky and you wont be disappointed. 6:05 exactly seems to be the sweet spot

  • i saw it too! about 6.20pm as i was enjoying a cold beer after work on the verandah in Glebe.It was such a beautiful experience..and quite loud too! the tail was full of sparks and it seemed to go for about 5 seconds. i made a wish, and believe it or not, it has come true!

  • I saw it pretty much due east from Frenchs Forest; It was 18:20 on my clock. Possibly the biggest Fireball I’ve seen. It was bright, covered about 20-30 degrees of arc, was a yellowy-orange hue, and appeared to explode at the end. Very impressive.

    PS: 3 of us in Sydney, 1 on the Central Coast – I presume it was quite far out to sea then.




  • Last night (6/7/06) in SummerHill a friend and I saw a huge sparking fire ball cross the sky in a down ward motion over the airport area. Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No it’s an unidentified flying object. Where did it land, it looked large enough to be in our atmosphere, which no doubt it was as it was burning up from our atmosphere. Anyone with any idea!!??

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