17 May 2007

March-April 2007

New Delhi: Fireball reports baffling Indian officials

United Press International
Sun, 04 Mar 2007 17:16 EST

Civil aviation authorities in India are struggling to determine what caused at least 10 pilots to report seeing a "ball of fire" in the air Sunday morning.

Described by several pilots as a "ball of fire, orange in color and scattered," the phenomenon was said to have appeared over the Indian state of Gujarat and has left aircraft officials perplexed at its possible cause, the Sunday Express said.

Air Traffic Control authorities in the New Delhi have been asked to investigate the mysterious incident, but initial inquiries found that no aircraft had been reported missing since it occurred.

Some in India have already speculated that the fireball could be related to Pakistan's recent short-range missile test.

While the neighboring country had informed all regional aircraft pilots of its intent to test the weapon, it did not offer specifics regarding a testing time.

The paper said that any future action on the matter would come after the ATC files its initial investigative report.

California: Fireball in sky seen across Southland

Monterey Herald
Sat, 03 Mar 2007 17:47 EST

Witnesses reported seeing a fireball streaking across the night skies above San Diego County on Thursday, prompting authorities to look for a crashed plane.

California Highway Patrol officers were among those who told officials they saw an object sizzle across the sky for four minutes over east San Diego County.

The first call reporting the object was made by a witness in Santee, about 15 miles east of downtown San Diego, at 8:26 p.m. Other reports were received from locations up to 60 miles away.

A CHP officer in San Clemente reported at 8:30 p.m. that he spotted a shooting star streaking west into the Pacific Ocean.

The Federal Aviation Administration said no planes had been reported lost, and a Vandenberg Air Force Base spokesman said no missiles were launched Thursday.

Wisconsin: Fireball thought to be meteor

From southeastern Wisconsin to as far as Des Moines, Iowa and St. Louis, people reported seeing balls of fire, possibly meteors, streaking across the sky Sunday night.

No major meteor showers were expected in the northern hemisphere on Sunday night, said Jim Lattis, director of the University of Wisconsin-Madison astronomy department's Space Place. But he said it was possible that a minor shower may have been what prompted calls to authorities.

The National Weather Service's Sullivan office said reports were called in from Iowa, northern Illinois and on up to Green Bay.

Dozens of people throughout the St. Louis region and Illinois reported small objects that looked like bright lights or something burning, with flaming tails behind some of them, said Ken Tretter, with the Missouri State Highway Patrol in St. Louis.

In Wisconsin, a Waukesha County dispatch supervisor said two callers reported a sighting around 8:15 p.m.

The Winnebago County Sheriff's Department said it received calls from Oshkosh, Ripon, Appleton, Neenah, and Pulaski, among others.

A preliminary report Sunday indicated that the lights were from a meteor, said Maj. April Cunningham, a spokeswoman for North American Aerospace Defense Command, or NORAD, which watches for airborne threats to the United States and Canada.

"We had a pilot reporting seeing a meteor and that's really all the information we have tonight," Cunningham said.

Suspected meteorite goes through Illinois window

Eric Heisig
The Daily Vidette
Tue, 06 Mar 2007 03:52 EST

At a 71-degree angle, going 60 mph, an object went through the house of Bloomington residents David and Dee Riddle at 9:40 a.m. Monday morning. Although it has not been officially confirmed, the object is suspected to be a meteorite.

"I was in the kitchen when I heard the sound of glass breaking," Dee Riddle, whose house is located off of West Miller Street, said. "There was also a thump and a shake."

Riddle ran around the house to find the breaking glass. She found it in their bedroom in the back of the house.

"It took me 15 minutes to look for it and then I found it," she explained.

After the object was spotted, she called the police to file a report.

"When I told them what I thought it was, they thought I was crazy," Riddle said. "Then they saw it and called the sergeant to look at it."

From there, the Fire Department came with Geiger counters to make sure it was not radioactive. Crime scene officials also came to investigate the ballistics of the impact.

"They did say it was a meteorite, but it needed to be tested," Riddle said.

Professors from ISU were also called to look at the scene and many of them, after dong some preliminary studies, said they speculate it is a meteorite.

"From what I know, this is consistent with meteorites," Jay Anser, a general education lab coordinator for the department of Physics, said.

Dave Malone, a professor in the department of Geology, said he is 80 percent sure this is a meteorite.

It is uncommon for meteorites to actually hit the ground.

"Most of the time they burn up completely," Skip Nelson, a professor in the department of Geology, said. "It is rare for them to land."

Nelson said the department of Geology gets about two calls per year of people who think they have found a meteorite, but they rarely turn out to be them.

"This is the first one that has even been close," he explained.

Even if the geologists at ISU are certain, there are tests that need to be done to confirm whether or not it is a meteorite. There are a number of tests that can be done, according to James Day, a professor in the department of Geology.

"It can be cut with a diamond saw and do a spectrogramic study," Day said. "Also, acid etching can be done, to determine its crystal structure,"

The object will need to be sent out in order to determine whether or not it is in fact a meteorite.

A big boom, followed by earthquake-like tremors in Charleston

Meryl Conant
Fri, 09 Mar 2007 14:48 EST

A big boom, followed by earthquake-like tremors. That's how people are describing what they felt Thursday morning.

Starting around 9. the Count on 2 newsroom started getting calls into our newsroom from viewers, from Johns Island, up to Isle of Palms and McClellanville and all the way over to Nesmith.

South Carolina typically sees 10-15 earthquakes a year. But, we don't feel most of them.

The National Earthquake Information Center says this isn't an earthquake since nothing was recorded on their seismographs. They say it was most likely a sonic boom. But the Charleston Air Traffic Tower says nothing was in the area that would have produced that sonic boom.

The majority of people Count on 2 spoke with say they did not feel a thing this morning. But, there are some who say they definitely felt a rumble.

"I literally felt my house shake, vibrate," explained Isle of Palms Resident Gloria Hewitt. "It was really loud, real loud and I heard my china shaking in my china cabinet."

"The ground was shaking, the house was shaking, the windows were banging," said Isle of Palms resident Daniel Davis.

Both Hewitt and Davis are asking one question: what was it?

"An act of God,' Hewitt thinks.

"Either the wind, an airplane or an earthquake," said Davis.

Davis would put his money on it being an earthquake. He's lived through three before. But still, this one shook him up a bit.

"You didn't expect for there to be an earthquake in Isle of Palms this morning," he said.

Even the National Weather Channel was reporting a possible earthquake felt in the Charleston area.

All those who felt it say it lasted seconds. While it may have come and gone as quickly as a gust of wind, the mystery of what it was is sticking around.
There is another possible explanation for this mystery. According to the US Geological Survey.

There is an unexplained phenomenon called Seneca Guns that sound like sonic booms and shake homes.

There have been reports of Seneca Guns along the coasts here in South Carolina and also in North Carolina and Virginia.

In addition, there have been reports of such booms around Lake Seneca and Lake Cayuga in New York State.Some speculate this could be gas escaping from vents in the earth's surface, but no exact cause is known.

Meteorites - There Are More Than We Know

Signs of the Times
Thu, 08 Mar 2007 17:34 EST

While the increase in officially recorded meteorites over the past few years is indeed startling for anyone watching (i.e. Signs of the Times), it seems that there are many more that go unrecorded. Over the past few months we have carried several reports of these unofficial meteors that are usually reported by individuals on bulletin boards and blogs.

Here's the latest from Perth Australia:

I saw a meteor this morning!!!!! An absolute ripper and my very first for myself!!

It came across the sky at 7.10am this morning just as the sun was peeking above the hills to the east so the sky was that slight purple-y blue in the morning.

It was bright white-hot at the head with a beautiful azure-aquamarine flame tapering to a hint of fire-orange at the back - all up about an inch and half long from my POV.

It travelled east to west across the sky for about 5 secs (enough time for me to shout look at that! 3 or 4 times at any rate) before splitting into two just below the 3/4 moon that we have in the sky at present and disappearing.

absolutely gorgeous!

Ball of fury sets the night on fire - Observers panick as meteorite flames to Earth

Christian Cotroneo
The Star
Tue, 13 Mar 2007 10:39 EDT

Cynthia Crowther had just lit a cigarette outside her Newmarket home when the sky suddenly caught fire.

"Oh my God, I think I just saw a plane crash," she declared to her husband, running inside.

A ball of light, seething white, had careened overhead, spitting out dazzling debris.

She called police, the government, airport authorities.

Seeing his wife so frantic, Russell Crowther imagined worse.

"I thought it was a nuclear warhead," he recalls. "I was just squinting, waiting for us to evaporate."

At about the same time that Newmarket seemed scheduled for heavenly demolition, Scott Sweeney was driving home from his parents' house, along Wisconsin's stretch of Interstate 94. He was headed for Milwaukee on a four-lane highway flanked by fields and trees when, "something just caught my eye ... it was going straight down."

Indeed, the whitish-green fireball was on such a dramatic collision course that, from his vantage point, the 35-year-old IT technician imagined two grim scenarios: a mighty cannonball into Lake Michigan. Or Milwaukee was due for a celestial smackdown.

"I honestly waited to see something come up from the ground."

But what actually fell from the sky Sunday night, visible between 8 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. to rapt observers from here to Milwaukee, probably landed as a rock no bigger than a fist, weighing about a kilogram.

"Everything I have heard suggests that it was a bolide - a meteorite that was flaming through our atmosphere," explains Paul Delaney, a physics and astronomy professor at York University. "It probably came to ground somewhere. But where, nobody knows."

What's certain is that for three or four spine-tingling seconds, people from a massive swath of the continent shared the same slice of burning sky. And everyone imagined that whatever it was had landed in their own backyards.

"That is not at all unusual for really bright bolide," Delaney observes. "They have huge distances over which they can travel and therefore be seen."For all you know, it's up to 10 kilometres. That means its travel distance can be huge."

Fifty kilometres? Five hundred kilometres?

"It could be 5,000 kilometres, mate."

But a hurtling meteoroid glows white-hot as it rushes through the Earth's atmosphere. And, like a red-hot stick waved around at a campfire, it leaves a brief but extremely bright trail - "So it doesn't have to be very big to be seemingly really bright," Delaney says.

The North American Aerospace Defense Command certainly didn't flinch as it monitored the sky.

"We're pretty vigilant in terms of monitoring the skies," said Maj. Jason Proulx, a NORAD public affairs officer. "But what we do is we assess whether it poses a risk or a threat. If it doesn't pose a threat, it's not something we would express further interest in."

It was dramatic enough for television stations in Wisconsin to assure residents it was not a UFO. Closer to home, one radio report suggested the flaming fury landed in Nobleton, and police switchboards from around the GTA received calls from people who had seen the fireball.

If anyone does manage to find this heavenly visitor, the earthly rewards could be substantial. Museums may pay as much as $3,000 for a meteoroid of that size, Delaney estimates.

"These are wonderful laboratories," Delaney says. "It's a piece of space.

"Some of the rocks that come to ground are literally leftover pieces from the solar system's formation. All of a sudden, we step back in time 4 1/2 billion years ago, to the way the solar system was at that moment in time."

To the untrained eye, a meteorite would look like just about any other rock. Hence, a farmer plows over it. Or a road is built. Bye-bye, mystery.

"Unless somebody saw it hit," Delaney says. "The chances of us finding it are really slim, unfortunately."

Martians, UFOs ruled out, meteor strongly favoured

The Record
Tue, 13 Mar 2007 16:20 EDT

If you're bracing for little men in flying saucers, you can probably relax.

Astronomers say the colourful, bright object that captured attention as it burned across the night sky Sunday was more than likely a very rare meteor event.

Another expert speculated it could have been a piece of a satellite, so-called space junk, knocked back to Earth by a passing meteor.

People across southern Ontario and the northern United States reported sightings.

In Wisconsin, television stations interrupted their news broadcasts to assure viewers they were not being visited by a UFO.

In Michigan, some people reported that the thing had landed in their backyards -- claims authorities quickly discounted. In Grand Rapids, Mich., some said they saw a meteor about the size of a softball or a basketball travelling as close as 80 kilometres from the ground.

Michael Burns, past president and member of the Kitchener-Waterloo Centre of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, said a minor meteor shower known as the Gamma-Normid likely sent tiny space particles shooting through the Earth's atmosphere, creating the appearance of "fireballs streaking across the sky."

The Gamma-Normid event hasn't been visible in the past few years but occurs annually and peaks around March 14 -- when it's most likely to be visible, said Burns, who teaches mathematics and physics at Waterloo Collegiate Institute.

Waterloo's Anna Townshend, a graduate of the University of Western Ontario's astrophysics program, said the object she saw -- a bright, glowing disc -- came from space, based on the angle of descent. She speculated it might have been space junk burning up as it fell to Earth.

"Different satellites and space stations quite commonly get hit by meteors," Townshend said. "It's pretty common to have little pieces of metal flying into the atmosphere."

But despite assertions from experts, some witnesses say the object had a rectangular shape and didn't look like a meteor. Some told reporters they initially thought it was a nuclear warhead. Others feared a crashing commercial airplane.

"At first, it looked like an airplane, but it was on a rapid, horribly wrong descent," said John Sweeney, who watched the object burn out of the night sky as he drove west on Highway 7/8. "Then poof. It was gone."

He breathed a sigh of relief that his 10-year-old son in the passenger seat wouldn't have to witness a plane crash.

Kitchener's Michael Clarke swears he saw an F117 Stealth Fighter, an American spy plane, travelling above University Avenue on Sunday night.

"After I spotted it, I ran inside for my binoculars and made a positive ID when I returned outside," Clarke wrote in an e-mail. "There did not appear to be any escort aircraft and, indeed, it was almost silent."

The people charged with defending our skies, North American Aerospace Defense Command, or Norad, reported nothing unusual.

Some witnesses said the object seemed on a collision course with Ayr, west of Kitchener. A Toronto-area radio station suggested the flaming ball touched down in tiny Nobleton, near Newmarket, although the local fire department found no suspicious debris.

Paul Wiegert of the University of Western Ontario's astronomy department said if any parts of it came to Earth, it would likely have landed somewhere in Michigan.

Waterloo regional police believe the sighting was a meteorite, based on information they received from other agencies, Insp. Bryan Larkin said.

A meteor shower occurs when the Earth, which rotates around the sun, passes through debris in space. As it does, stones and tiny sand particles enter the Earth's atmosphere and burn up, which makes them look like fireballs, said Burns, the local astronomer.

They burn up because they enter the Earth travelling at about 108,000 kilometres per hour and can be seen over large distances, he said.

"For two seconds or three seconds, you can see it covers about 90 kilometres," he said. "That's why people from different cities can see them."

The fiery streaks in the sky could appear orange, red or blue, depending on the angle at which they're travelling, how fast they're moving and the material they're made of, Burns said.

Even tiny grains of sand from space will appear much larger because the high speed at which they're travelling makes them look brighter, he said.

The higher they are in the sky, the farther away they can be seen. However, the fiery particles can suddenly disappear into the dark sky if they slow down or burn up completely, Burns said.

If people did witness a Gamma-Normid event Sunday, it would have lasted only a couple of seconds, Burns said. Depending on the angle, the particles were travelling, however, it may have lasted longer, he said.

The space debris involved may have come from a comet, but it's hard to say for sure, Burns said.

"It's such a minor event that nobody's done a lot of research on what causes the debris that was left over."

Burns said it's tough to predict whether more Gamma-Normid events will be seen in the region over the next few days.

"The odds are very, very low, but you know, if we've seen something one night, there's no guarantee that we're not going to see something another night."

Comment: Ho hum. Just another mammouth meteor falling through the skies. Nothing to see here, folks. Move along.

Looking up at sky, locals can't believe their eyes

Cindy Leise
The Chronicle-Telegram
Tue, 13 Mar 2007 17:04 EDT

Cindy Sherman considers herself a rational person.

That's why she didn't assume that what she saw in the sky Sunday night was a UFO. But she saw something unusual, that much she knows.

The Elyria resident said she was traveling north on Route 57 in Grafton she saw something that was bright white streaking across the sky faster than any plane. The bright white orb then turned dark, and it was trailed by a tail of orange, red and yellow flames.

And then, poof, it was gone, Sherman said.

As it turns out, Sherman wasn't the only one peering skyward Sunday night.

The observatory at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History took reports from several people who saw what Sherman saw. People as far away as Toronto reported seeing it, said Clyde Simpson, the museum's observatory coordinator.

And just what was it? Most likely, a flaming meteor or a chunk of a comet, Simpson said.

He urged anyone who saw it to fill out a form at the American Meteor Society HERE.

Sherman said she called the Grafton police to report what she saw. "At first, I thought something blew up," she said.

John Guzik of Avon Lake also saw a glowing light streak across the sky while relaxing in his hot tub with his wife Melissa and 7-year-old son, Noah.

"It was huge - the biggest thing I've ever seen in the sky," Guzik said.

He didn't see the colors described by Sherman but said, the bright light "could have had a tint of gold."

Guzik, an account executive for WDOK 102.1-FM, said a number of callers to the station's morning show also described seeing the white orb.

Several callers to the National Weather Service office at Cleveland Hopkins International Airport also reported seeing a meteor, according to meteorologist Bill Randal.

Sherman said her husband teased her a bit about what she told him what she'd seen - especially since they just returned from a long road trip - but she stuck to her guns.

"I've had floaters in my eyes before but not with flames coming from them," she said with a laugh.

Meteor shower not cause of Wolverine school closure

Gaylord Herald Times
Wed, 14 Mar 2007 20:01 EDT

WOLVERINE - Despite the rumors, Monday's decision to cancel classes at Wolverine Community Schools was not because of a Sunday night meteor shower.

School Supt. Susan Denise said the closure was due to a number of icy back roads, nothing quite as spectacular as meteors falling from the sky.

Although Denise said she had personally seen a meteor Sunday night, a drop in Monday morning temperatures about a half hour after the district's buses had hit the roads, prompted the late decision to close school.

Denise said rain from the night before had frozen on some of the dirt back roads after bus drivers had started their routes creating hazardous conditions. Rather than risk taking those students already on the buses back to their homes, Denise said they were brought to school and parents were contacted to pick up their children.

The Gaylord National Weather Service indicated they had received a phone call Sunday night from someone in the Wolverine area who had reportedly seen a large meteor in the evening sky.

Family sees meteorite hit ground

Michael Power
Thu, 15 Mar 2007 12:26 EDT

What Richard Yip-Chuck saw fall into a farmer's field Sunday evening looked like a long, white ball with orange sparks shooting off the back.
The Holland Landing resident was driving along Hwy. 7 with his wife, Ele, and sons Kyle, 12, and 10-year-old Dylan, when they saw what looked like a fireball plummet to earth.

"There were sparks coming out of the back," Mr. Yip-Chuck said. "It was wild."

The bright flashes of light in the sky Sunday led to police switchboards in Toronto, York and Durham regions lighting up with people wondering what was happening.

People called saying they had seen a fireball in the sky between 8 and 8:30 p.m.

The Yip-Chucks, who were returning from hockey games in Lindsay where both sons play on the same team, saw the meteorite hit a farmers' field west of Lindsay, about an hour from Newmarket.

His younger son, Dylan, thought the fireball might have been a UFO, Mr. Yip-Chuck said.

"He was freaking out, saying, 'We've got to get off the road,'" he said. "But it was really cool, moving really fast. Whatever was coming off it was really bright."

The ball of light at first appeared to be a meteor, but also seemed too large for a falling rock, said Mr. Yip-Chuck's older son, Kyle.

The ball looked to be about the size of a car, said Kyle, who plays for the York Simcoe Express AAA hockey team.

The meteorite was probably about the size of a fist, given so many people in the GTA were able to see it, said Paul Delaney, a professor of physics and astronomy at York University.

Fireball in sky prompts flurry of calls to police in Ontario

The Record
Fri, 16 Mar 2007 11:20 EDT

KITCHENER, Ontario - Was it a planet? A plane? A meteorite? Little green men?

Whatever it was, residents across Waterloo Region saw something unusual in the night's sky yesterday. Around 8 p.m., the calls started coming into police stations, describing a fiery display streaking across the horizon.

Some, worried they were witnessing a falling airplane, phoned authorities, who set off on a search and rescue that turned up nothing. Local airports reported no downed planes last night.

In the span of a few minutes, multiple calls came in from St. Clements to Cambridge, said Sgt. Sharon Havill of the Waterloo regional police.

"We did some searching around," she said. "We don't have an answer for sure as to what they were. There were definitely multiple callers, saying they saw a flash in the sky. They weren't sure whether it was a helicopter or whether it crashed."

At one point, the calls had some police officers joking about searching for "little green men."

Police in Guelph had calls about the sightings, too. They promptly phoned the OPP to go check it out, said Sgt. Neal Young.

"It was on the west side of town, something like flames falling from the sky."

Marie Keyes was driving home along Weber Street with her husband when she saw what she initially thought was a shooting star or fireworks. When she looked closer, she saw an object with a trail of sparks arching toward the ground.

"I screamed 'look at that!'" she said. "It was amazing. It was such a shock when it came into view in my windshield. It kind of like dropped.

"It was too low to the horizon, and too large, to be a shooting star. I saw a blue flame coming out the end, and it had a tail, with sparks. It was moving very fast, it was a huge ball. And then it just sort of burned out."

About 15 minutes earlier, in the parking lot of a Victoria Street restaurant, Keyes and her husband saw bright moving lights that passed overhead.

These rectangular-shaped objects moved "unusually" and didn't look like "a typical airplane," she said.

Darryl Archer, an amateur astronomer and a member of the Kitchener-Waterloo Centre of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, said he didn't see anything unusual from his observatory last night. But on such clear winter nights, it's not uncommon for people to mistake the planet Venus for something far more exciting, he said.

"It's the brightest object in the sky next to the sun and moon, so some people mistake it for a UFO," he said from his home in Baden.

He said no meteorite showers were expected last night.

Goodness gracious! A ball of fire

The Globe and Mail
Sat, 17 Mar 2007 11:26 EDT

It's not every day you see a meteor streaking across the sky. For some Torontonians, the sight of a green fireball on Sunday night was a surprisingly big event. Some were scared. Some were enchanted. Some braced for impact and some called the cops. However, as Constable Laurie Perks of the York Regional Police curtly puts it, space debris "is not a police matter. It's an outer-space matter."

The meteor, of a particularly bright type known as a bolide or fireball, prompted many locals to flights of fancy. "I wasn't sure if I was seeing stuff," admits Mike Mazeika, who saw the meteor from a ninth-floor apartment in North York. "It was so big and it lasted so long." He describes the green- and orange-tinged fireball as being "bigger than a plane," maybe "the size of a building" and adds that the sight of it literally froze him in his tracks.

In fact, it's estimated Sunday's meteor was sized somewhere between a toaster and a golf ball. Because our eye has nothing to scale them to, bolides always seem to be much closer and bigger than they are. Their brightness and their speed -- "25 to 70 times the speed of a rifle bullet," says Terence Dickinson, editor of SkyNews astronomy magazine -- add to that impression.

"Everyone has a knee-jerk reaction of some kind," Mr. Dickinson continues. "Some people see it for what it is -- a piece of material left over from the formation of the solar system, more than four billion years old. But others think it's an airplane crashing down or a ballistic missile." Still others think they're having a quasi-religious experience or seeing a UFO.

Meteors have long been mistaken for things they are not. During a massive meteor shower in 1833, many people assumed the end of the world was at hand. A flaring green bolide in 1966 piqued Cold War paranoia. The Tagish Lake meteor, which fell in Yukon in 2000, coincided with the U.S. conducting a weapons defence test; people thought it was a missile that had misfired.

"Most of us learn 'science,' in quote marks, from movies and television," Mr. Dickinson says. When people jump to conclusions, imagining the meteor crashing into a nearby field -- or into the Granite Club -- he says, "they're just attaching information they know to what they see."

"What you don't understand immediately conjures up fear," adds Paul Delaney, professor of physics and astronomy at York University. Given what we know -- or don't know -- about space, "It's very understandable to say, yes, we're being visited."

UFO buff Mike Bird, who claims to have seen four extraterrestrial craft in his life, is confident Sunday's event was no visitation. "If it had stopped and changed direction," he says, "that would be another story." (He's not so sure about the Meteor Train of 1913, however.)

"The sky automatically adds wonder to our environment," Mr. Dickinson says. "People historically have looked at the sky and seen heaven or gods. There's been wondering at the sky ever since humans have been humans."

"It's one of the most amazing things I've seen in my life," Mr. Mazeika says. "I feel really lucky."

Comment: The Globe and Mail is considered to be 'Canada's newspaper of record', so when it is forced to acknowledge a meteor display, you know things are getting exciting up there in the heavens. Of course, that the meteor went over Toronto helps. The sighting wasn't limited to the boondocks where it doesn't count as national news.

A mysterious aerial device falls in Somalia.

Mohamed Amiin
Tue, 27 Mar 2007 14:57 EDT

Mogadishu -- ( Sh.M.Network) A mysterious device looking like a satellite or UFO has landed and spotted near buulo burde town in south Somalia.

Villagers report that the device fell five days ago in area which lies forty kilo meters north of Buulo burde town.

The device is occupying in an area of one hundred Meters Square as villagers who spotted this device confirmed to Shabelle Radio.

"In the evening of last Wednesday, a large device flew over our head and moments later, we heard a large sound, BAM" said Ilyas Ali, a villager who lives nearby where this large device has fallen.

Ilyas spoke of the device, telling that in the daylight it glitters and in a nighttime, it turns lights and speaks a strange language which can't be understood by the villagers.

The impact of the unidentified device has killed a camel which was grazing nearby.

Because of the remote area it fell, news of the device is emerging gradually now despite its fall of five days ago.

Shabelle Media Network Somalia
E-mail us: info@shabelle.net

Comment: Perhaps this is related to the mysterious tsunami that struck the Somali coast a few days ago that didn't show up in the earthquake registry.

Giant meteor over Germany triggers "UFO" alarm

Tue, 27 Mar 2007 06:17 EDT

(shortened Babelfish translation)

Mannheim - a large meteor on Monday evening in the clear sky between South Germany and Lower Saxony triggered "UFO" alarm in some observers

Callers described a light-greenish-white head and a reddish-yellow tail that lasted up to five seconds "flat and noiseless going from the south to the north", said Werner walter of the Centralen research net of unusual sky phenomena (CENAP) on Tuesday in Mannheim. The meteor finally broke into many orange fragments.

A former career soldier described the meteor as a "continuous rocket", others thought it was an exploding "flying saucer".

Huge ice block falls on West Bank village

Maan News Agency
Wed, 28 Mar 2007 10:00 EDT

Eyewitnesses in the northern West Bank town of Deir Ballout, near Salfit, reported that a huge ice block landed in the area.

Witnesses reported that unusual crackling sounds could be heard in the area, which astonished the inhabitants of the village who were preparing for evening prayer.

An eyewitness, Raed Mustafa, told Ma'an "while we were preparing for evening prayer, a strange entity around 1 metre squared in size, fell from the heavens causing a sound like whistling. We discovered that it was an ice block weighing about 35kg."

The eyewitnesses said that the weather had been clear with no rain or wind when the ice block fell on Tuesday evening.

Mustafa said that they extracted pieces of the ice block for examination.

Reports were also affirmed by Iyas Qasim an editor at the Al Hayah Al Jadida newspaper and Jihad Mustafa an employee at the Palestinian ministry of archaeology and tourism.

Space junk spooks pilot

John Masanauskas
Herald Sun
Wed, 28 Mar 2007 13:07 EDT

A jetliner flying across the Pacific has had a close encounter with space junk from a Russian satellite.

The captain of a LAN Chile Airbus A340 flying to Auckland was shocked to see the flaming debris less than 10km from his craft.

New Zealand air traffic control authorities said the space junk posed a major safety risk and would be investigated.

Comment: So, it seems that this is not an ordinary situation because of the way the guy was shocked and then the reaction of the ATC people who said "it would be investigated."

The aircraft, flying from Santiago in Chile, came close to the remnants of the re-entering satellite on Tuesday evening while flying at about 30,000 feet in NZ airspace.

A plane spotter who was tuning into a high-frequency radio broadcast said the pilot reported the rumbling noise from the space debris could be heard over the noise of the aircraft.

"He saw a piece of debris lighting up as it re-entered (the atmosphere)," the spotter said.

"He was a very worried pilot, as you'd imagine.

Comment: Who knows if it would have even made it to the news if it hadn't been for the spotter who was eavesdropping?

"(It's) not something you come across every day and I'm sure the LAN Chile crew will have a tale to tell."

Ken Mitchell, spokesman for Airways NZ, said Russian authorities had notified that a satellite would be coming out of orbit yesterday morning.

"It appears the satellite has entered early and by sheer chance a LAN Chile flight was in the area," Mr Mitchell said.

Comment: If they were notified as they said, and we KNOW they can track this stuff and pinpoint pretty well where it will come down, the why the hell was the plane in the area "by chance"??? Sorry, doesn't wash. Damage control.

"It's not uncommon for a satellite to come down in this part of the world, but it's uncommon for an aircraft to be in the vicinity.

"It's a considerable concern to us and we're keen to ensure it doesn't happen again."

In 2001, Chile snubbed an invitation by Russia to watch the re-entry of the Mir space station in waters about 3000km east of NZ's southern tip.

Chile said it opposed using the ocean as a burial ground for space junk.

At the time, a Russian official said any potentially dangerous substances on Mir's fragments would be burned off during re-entry.

Denver Flight forced to turn around due to crack in windshield

9News Colorado
Wed, 28 Mar 2007 21:44 EDT

DENVER - A flight heading to San Antonio, TX, had to return to DIA on Wednesday afternoon because of a crack in the windshield.

GoJet flight 5306 had about 40 people on board when it had to turn around.

GoJet's United Express flights operate out of United Airlines hubs in Chicago, Denver and Washington D.C.

Authorities are still investigating what caused the crack.

Comment: One month and one week later, another cracked windshield - wonder what it is about Denver International Airport and the area that surrounds it that seems to be 'attracting' cracked windshields this year? See the flashback article for more information on how rare cracked jet windshields are.

SHOCK! They Admit! NASA rubbishes space junk theory

News Talk
Thu, 29 Mar 2007 04:18 EDT

NASA has discounted claims Russian space junk was responsible for a near-miss over the Pacific.

The pilot of a Chilean jet bound for Auckland reported seeing fiery debris falling near his plane on Tuesday night.

There is speculation it was an unmanned Russian cargo craft returning to Earth after resupplying the International Space Station.

However NASA's chief scientist for orbital debris Nicholas Johnson has checked the records of the 15,000 space objects NASA tracks on a regular basis. He says none fell to Earth during the period reported by the airliner and the Russian rocket re-entered the atmosphere 13 hours later.

Mr Johnson says the pilot probably saw a meteorite burning up as it entered the atmosphere.

NASA Update: Flaming objects may have been meteors, not space junk

Thu, 29 Mar 2007 04:26 EDT

NASA says the flaming objects which came close to hitting an airliner heading to New Zealand could be meteors, and not Russian space junk.

The objects fell ahead of and behind a Chilean airliner flying over the Pacific between Santiago and Auckland on Tuesday night.

A chief NASA scientist checked with the Russians, who say they fired rockets on their space junk after the airline reported the near-miss.

The New Zealand Space Flight Association's Matthew Pavletich also thinks the objects are not from the empty Russian Progress supply ship.

Comment: Can we call 'em or what?

They weren't able to hide it! Chile: Experts question threat of Russian Space Junk

The Santiago Times
Thu, 29 Mar 2007 04:30 EDT

The world's press was quick to spread the news that pieces of space junk from a falling Russian satellite narrowly missed hitting a LAN Chile jetliner over the Pacific Ocean on Tuesday night. But several experts are now questioning the likelihood of the claims.

According to media reports, the LAN Airbus A340 was traveling between Santiago and Auckland, New Zealand. The pilot notified air traffic controllers at the Auckland Flight Center after seeing flaming, incandescent fragments of the satellite flying through the sky eight kilometers in front of the aircraft. He described seeing pieces of debris lighting up as they re-entered the earth's atmosphere.

According to a plane spotter, who was tuning into a high frequency radio broadcast at the time, the pilot "reported that the rumbling noise from the space debris could be heard over the noise of the aircraft." The plane spotter also heard air traffic control in Auckland warning the pilot of an Aerolineas Argentinas flight, traveling in the opposite direction ten degrees further south. The pilot chose to carry on rather than turn back to New Zealand.

The assistant secretary of the Australian and International Pilots Association, Captain Steven Anderson, who flies for Qantas, said that based on the details of the report, the debris could have caused catastrophic consequences had it actually struck the aircraft. He said that "for the pilot to have heard the debris falling, it was probably a lot closer than he thinks or it was bigger and going at quite a high speed." Anderson thinks the debris may well have broken the sound barrier.

A spokesman for the Aeronautical Association of New Zealand, which provides air navigation services across airspace known as the Auckland Flight Information Region, confirmed the incident Wednesday morning. He said it occurred about ten minutes after the LAN Chile flight had entered the region.

The Aeronautical Association of New Zealand were warned by Russian authorities almost two weeks ago that a satellite would be entering the earth's atmosphere sometime last night and the information was passed on to the airlines and pilots due to travel in the region at that time. However, according to a spokesman for the Aeronautical Association of New, Ken Mitchell, the satellite fragments entered the atmosphere at least 12 hours before the time given by Russian authorities.

Luckily the Chilean aircraft landed safely in Auckland at dawn this morning without problems. A spokesman for the Civil Aviation Authority, which is responsible for air safety, said it would launch an inquiry after it was advised of the details of the incident.

The story made big news around the world and was picked up by FOX News, MSNBC, and the BBC, although aerospace media consultant James Oberg told the Santiago Times that the story was probably all hype.

"All available documentation shows that the de-orbit [of the Russian satellite] happened exactly on time, and if it wasn't, it would have burned up over an entirely different part of the globe," he said.

Oberg continued to say that pilots sometimes overreact out of caution. "Range experts of bright fireballs are notoriously inaccurate, and pilots have been known to throw their aircraft into violent evasive maneuvers based on seeing bright fireballs that were 100 to 150 kilometers away.

Finally, Oberg doubted that crashing sounds were actually heard, and said more information should be obtained from the passengers on the plane.

Airliner Almost Hit: It was a meteorite, not a satellite, says Russia

Sydney Morning Herald
Thu, 29 Mar 2007 09:19 EDT

A Chilean jetliner approaching New Zealand came within 20 seconds of being hit by blazing objects hurtling down to Earth, New Zealand aviation officials say.

US space officials said today it was most likely a close encounter with a disintegrating meteor, denying assertions from New Zealand officials that the LAN Chile plane narrowly missed being blasted by Russian space debris that was returning to Earth ahead of schedule.

While it is not uncommon for space junk to fall into the South Pacific, "it is very uncommon to have a plane in the middle of it," said Airways New Zealand spokesman Ken Mitchell.

Mitchell, whose agency handles air traffic control in the region, told New Zealand National Radio that the flaming objects were likely space junk arriving 12 hours ahead of Russian projections.

The airline said in a brief communique that the pilot, who was not identified, "made visual contact with incandescent fragments several kilometres away" during the Monday night flight, and that the incident was reported to authorities in Chile and New Zealand.

But Russia's Federal Space Agency issued a statement saying that its cargo ship Progress M-58 had fallen back to Earth according to the timetable it had warned aviation officials about previously.

In other words, the Russians say the fragments of Progress didn't plunge into the Pacific Ocean east of New Zealand until about around 2330 GMT Tuesday. The fiery near-hit with the jet was reported about 12 hours earlier, a time when the cargo ship was still attached to the international space station.

"Unless someone has their times wrong, there appears to be no correlation," said Nicholas Johnson, orbital debris chief scientist for NASA's Johnson Space Centre.

Johnson said there are no other reports from the US Space Surveillance Network of other re-entering space junk at the time, so the flaming objects must have been fragments of a meteor.

The Lan Chile pilot flying from Santiago, Chile, notified air traffic controllers at Auckland after spotting the flaming objects just five nautical miles (9.2 kilometres) in front of and behind his Airbus 340.

That distance would not have given the pilots much room for manoeuvre, according to World Airliner magazine editor Tony Dickson. "You're talking about 20 seconds and that's not a lot" of separation, he told National Radio Thursday.

About 50 meteoroids enter the Earth's atmosphere every day - mostly burning up as they speed in - said Bill Ailor, director of the Centre for Orbital and Reentry Debris Studies at the Aerospace Corporation of El Segundo, Calif.

Those that survive to hit the earth are called meteorites.

By contrast, about 150 pieces of man-made space junk fall back to Earth each year. About two-thirds of these are unplanned but still known and monitored, and larger man-made space equipment, such as the Progress resupply ship, have motors to guide them back to Earth, Ailor said.

If they are calculated to have more than a 1 in 10,000 chance of hitting people, they are shifted to a safer path, he said, though small errors can lead to large variations in where the debris hits.

"For de-orbit, everything has to be lined up right ... and your math has to be right and also your time has to be precise," Ailor said. "There are lots of places where you can have problems."

No one has ever been killed by man-made space junk, Ailor said, though in 1997, an Oklahoma woman was grazed in the shoulder by falling material.

Flashback: We see ball of fire in night sky: 10 pilots overflying India report to ATCs

Pranab Dhal Samanta
The Sunday Express
Thu, 29 Mar 2007 09:38 EDT

NEW DELHI, MARCH 3:Civil Aviation authorities are baffled by reports from at least 10 aircraft overflying India that they had seen a "ball of fire" in the air, about 300 nautical miles south west of Delhi, which is somewhere over Gujarat.

Sources have told The Sunday Express that all reports came in almost simultaneously, around 1.45 am this morning, and the matter is being investigated.

The description used by pilots, according to their reports, was that it appeared like a "ball of fire, orange in colour and scattered". One pilot, in fact, said it looked like a "meteor shower".

At first, alarmed officials checked whether any aircraft had gone missing or if there was any other disaster in the area. But all this was ruled out by afternoon.

These reports came in mostly from international aircraft overflying Indian territory. These included British Airways, Air France and Malaysian Airlines. In fact, an Air Sahara flight on the Delhi-Mumbai route also reported the same. A non-scheduled high-speed jet, too, is said to have given a similar report.

It's learnt that Directorate General of Civil Aviation has asked Air Traffic Control authorities in Delhi to carry out preliminary inquiries into this and submit a report. On the basis of this, the DGCA will decide on the next step and will, possibly, ask the Indian Air Force to look into it as well.

DGCA officials said it is unusual for so many pilots to file similar reports, a fact which indicates they did see "something." However, at altitudes above 26,000 feet, this would be a rare event. They added that any action would be determined upon the preliminary report by the ATC which comes under the Airports Authority of India.

Meanwhile, this has led to speculation whether this had anything to do with Pakistan's short-range missile test that was conducted in the last 24 hours according to an announcement this morning. Pakistan had given a notice to airmen that it would carrying out a test, but the exact time was not notified. Others, however, said it is quite difficult for planes over Gujarat to be able to spot any such activity in Pakistan.

Geologists find meteorite on Panama beach that Fell as a Fireball Last Friday

Thu, 29 Mar 2007 10:26 EDT

PANAMA CITY - Panamanian geologists have found an meteorite at Rio Hato, a coastal town west of the capital Panama City.

The meteorite fell onto Rio Hato's beach last Friday, geologist Juan de Dios Villa told the press on Wednesday.

The landing was witnessed by a security guard, who described it as a ball of fire crashing down from the sky onto the sand.

The 4.2 kg red object, measuring 20 cm in diameter, will be X-rayed for more details, said Villa, chief geologist at the National Mineral Resources Directorate.

The meteorite shows burn marks on its exterior, and appears to be mainly carbon-based, in contrast to most meteorites, which mainly contain iron.

Fireball report: Trenton, New Jersey

Tue, 27 Mar 2007 18:21 EDT

Local time approximately 6:AM
Approach Direction: from south
Departure Direction: to north
Witness Direction: north

Description: I spotted in a split second a long tail of tan colored light burning about a football field in length that suddenly vanished. It moved faster than any jet I know of. It very well could have been something entering Earth's atmosphere.

Color/Shape: Very thin, long but straight tan colored tail of burning light. As the burning dimmed it appeared to be a black dot for a split second at the front of the burning tail.

Height & Speed: It was approximately 6:AM the sky was still dark so the height is hard to estimate. The tail travelled from high in line with the stars to a slight decline covering a long distance in a split second.

TV/Radio/Press: I searched today and found nothing. My search led me here and I want to report what I saw just in case?

Meteor shower over Auckland

TV3 NEws
Sat, 31 Mar 2007 07:28 EDT

A meteor shower is believed to be responsible for a light show over Auckland's Waitemata Harbour this morning.

A number of callers to police reported seeing colourful or white lights from the North Shore, Kohimarama and as far South as Kawakawa Bay at around five thirty.

Inspector Willie Taylor says there has been no indication of any navy exercises or ships in distress, and the lights were probably fragments from a meteorite shower.

Comment: They are starting to come fast and furious now! Heads up!

Damage Control: Unkown satellite-like device falls into Somalia

Tue, 03 Apr 2007 08:20 EDT

The story "Unknown Satellite Like" which we published on March 26 was initially received from interviews and coverage done by Mogadishu radio stations. At the time of the incident many people in the area talked as if they saw the peculiar object. After many SomaliNet news readers contacted us about the article, we decided to investigate more and tried to verify the validity of this strange story.

According to reporters who went to the area, so far no single person who saw the object could be found. Although everyone believes the story is true, they all gave the same answer: I didn't see it with my eyes but...

We might run another update on this story after the reporters who went to the region go back to Mogadishu. In the meantime, whether to believe the story or not is up to the reader. SomaliNet apologizes for publishing it without doing more investigation.

Amazing explanation: Metal fragment that hit home not a meteorite, but an extremely fast and precise man-made object.

M.K. Guetersloh
Thu, 05 Apr 2007 09:44 EDT

The chunk of metal that crashed though a Bloomington couple's home last month was not a meteorite but something man-made.

But Robert "Skip" Nelson, a professor of geology at Illinois State University, said the theory may be just as unique as he pieces together how the piece of metal made its way March 5 into David and Dee Riddle's house at Partner Place.

Nelson said the metal object appears to have been ejected from a wood grinder from Twin City Wood Recycling. "That's almost as amazing as it being a meteorite," Nelson said.

The metal object is about the size of a deck of cards and weighs nearly a pound. Because of its weight and the steep angle with which it hit the house, Nelson initially thought it could have been a meteorite.

John Wollrab, owner of the recycling company, said he contacted university scientists within days of learning about it.

"I had heard about it and thought it was interesting," Wollrab said. "It was close to my business and we were outside that day running the grinder so it made me wonder if it was something that came out of the grinder."

Wollrab let university professors studying the object come out to his business to take measurements.

If it was ejected from the grinder, Nelson said, the chunk of metal would have traveled about 300 meters, or roughly 900 feet.

"The force to push it that far would have been pretty great," Nelson said.

The speed the object was traveling when it crashed through the Riddles' bedroom window and punched through a computer desk would have been "a couple of hundred miles an hour," Nelson added.

Wollrab said he would be surprised if something could be ejected from the machinery with enough force to travel that far. "I think it is still speculation," Wollrab said.

Dee Riddle said she, too, is surprised by Nelson's theory.

"I just don't understand how that could have traveled that far," she said.

Nelson doesn't know where the metal came from. He said it did not come from the machinery but may have been something mixed in with the wood.

Meteorite hits roof..? No its just the wind..!

Gentry Braswell
Sierra Vista Herald
Thu, 12 Apr 2007 19:12 EDT

Something made a mess of the clay tiles on the roof a Sierra Vista family's home on Monday.

The question now is: What made the mess? Was it a meteorite? Was it something else? The King family called the police to document the incident, concerned about how the damage will be paid for, said Karen King, a mother of two who lives in the home.

King went onto Fort Huachuca at about 11:15 a.m. and did not notice anything unusual when she left. When she came home about four hours later, the roof damage was evident and tiles were scattered, some broken, some knocked into their yard, at 2044 Paseo El Paso.

The Kings just moved here from Fort Campbell, Ky., and closed on the house on Feb. 15.

From the pattern of the damage on the roof, it appeared whatever hit the house was traveling from the west at a pretty shallow angle of descent.

Neighbor Jenee Mittenzwei, who lives in the home across the street immediately east of the Kings', did not notice anything hitting the roof.

"I didn't see anything, didn't hear anything, but I've got three kids in here," Mittenzwei said. "We were here, though."

The Kings never heard anything unusual on the roof, and she believes it must have happened while she was out running errands.

"The police officer said 'I've never seen this one before,' " King said.

The Sierra Vista Police Department report, which King called in Monday afternoon when she noticed the strange damage, was inconclusive as to the origin of the hole in the roof.

"Unknown how it occurred, unknown if intentional or act of nature," reads the report, which was originally entered as a criminal damage call.

King said she called the Federal Aviation Administration in Tucson to report whatever had come from the sky and damaged their roof. The agency promised to send someone out, she said.

The Realtor who brokered the recent purchase of their home also came to take a look.

King said her inquisitive son Brandon, 10, was fascinated by the fact that whatever hit their roof was possibly from space.

"If it was a meteor(ite), he wants to keep it because he's all about space," his mother said.

Brandon's sister Kathleen, 7, could take or leave meteorites, so to speak. She is more interested in the mysteries of the ocean, her mother said.

Brandon got an opportunity to gaze at the stars with the help of the Huachuca Astronomy Club last week at General Myer Elementary School.

Unfortunately, as of Tuesday afternoon, no one had found whatever projectile hit the Kings' roof.

"I'm just seeing a lot of weird cars in the neighborhood," King said.

Doug Snyder, an amateur astronomer who is a member of the Huachuca Astronomy Club said he went out to see Tuesday the damage done to the King family's roof, and, like Brandon King, he was rather disappointed that whatever hit the roof hadn't been located.

"Evidently, it wasn't a wild bird," Snyder said, noting the velocity and angle at which whatever it was hit the tiles. "It was moving at a pretty good clip."

One theory that it might have been so-called "blue ice" from frozen commode water dumped from commercial aircraft did not fly with the amateur astronomer because of the general lack of commercial flight activity in this area, as well as the very slight angle at which the roof was struck.

"That comes to mind, but I don't think so," Snyder said. "And it wasn't just the neighborhood kids throwing rocks."

Snyder said it may or may not have been of an astronomical origin, but the incident, in any case, is "very curious."

If it was space debris of some sort, the neighborhood terrain of yards with rocks was not aiding anyone's search for the likely projectile, Snyder said.

Like others who stopped by the family's residence, Snyder said he left a card in case anything else turns up.

Don't panic its just the wind

Wind, not meteor, likely cause of damaged roof

The damage to a roof on Paseo El Paso on Monday was most likely caused by wind, many local residents with the same experience pointed out Wednesday.

A number of Winterhaven and Canyon De Flores neighborhood residents in south Sierra Vista reported being eyewitnesses to similar jumbling of their roof tiles, caused by gusts of wind, not meteors, as some had speculated regarding the cause of the damage Monday to the home at Paseo El Paso. One woman said she experienced the same sort of damage last summer to their home's roof and skylight at the family housing on Fort Huachuca.

Chuck Krzmarzick of the Winterhaven neighborhood said that on June 13, 2002, a "dust devil" tossed about the concrete tiles of his roof.

Unlike the King family Monday, Krzmarzick was in the house when the dust devil hit.

"I thought, man we're finally going to get some rain, and I went outside. There wasn't a cloud in the sky, but I saw a dust devil," he said. "They (the concrete tiles) weigh maybe 10 pounds, but that dust devil sucked them right up."

Krzmarzick and several other local residents noted that all roof tiles are not required to be nailed down. Only the ones on the top ridge, the sides and the bottoms are typically secured to the house frame.

"The rest are just laying down," he said.

As such, with wind like the spring brings here, roof tiles can be affected with the right gust.

"It goes across the roof like a tractor or a roll of thunder," said resident Ken Hooton, whose Pebble Beach Drive home was hit three years in a row before he moved over to Winterhaven. "There's no doubt about what it was. It was a dust devil."

A Sierra Vista neighborhood code enforcement officer said the local wind rating consists of an expectation of peak gusts of 90 mph for a duration of no more than three seconds. If that rating were of 100 mph, then requirements for securing roof tiles would be somewhat stricter, but there would remain no requirement that they all be individually bolted down nevertheless, the city inspector said.

With the thermal expansion of roof tiles, bolting each one to the house frame would result in more broken tiles.

Rather than local government determining the rules for securing roof tiles, the code often refers to the roofing materials' respective manufacturer guidelines, he said.

'Very lucky' folks on Maui possibly saw meteor

The Maui News
Thu, 12 Apr 2007 07:43 EDT

WAILUKU - A brightly glowing object that streaked across the sky above Maui was reported by a few people up early enough Wednesday morning to witness the phenomenon.

The Maui News received several phone calls from people who said they saw what probably was a large meteor that moved from northwest to southeast or reporting an unusual cloud that remained in the sky after it passed.

Mike Maberry, assistant director of the University of Hawaii Institute for Astronomy, said he was not aware of any reports of an object in the sky. But he said its description sounded like a meteor.

"Whoever got to see that was very lucky," he said, adding that chances are "very slim" of a meteor landing in the vicinity of Maui in the middle of the Pacific.

Maberry said the meteor itself would not need to be very large to make a spectacular show.

"They don't have to be much larger than a poi pounder to look really big," he said.

Many of the meteors that make bright streaks across the night sky are only the size of a grain of sand, he said. A meteor is a rock or similar solid material that crosses into the Earth's atmosphere, with the friction from the high-speed entry causing the material to burn. When a space object lands on Earth, it is called a meteorite.

Kaleo Evangelista, a paddler with Kihei Canoe Club who was working out with a crew offshore from old Suda Store, said the glowing object made quite a show a few minutes after 5:30 a.m.

"We saw a glow going over us, just like an airplane," he said. But instead of seeing an aircraft the canoe paddlers saw a light blue, almost white object moving from northwest to southeast.

For one to two minutes, the paddlers watched the object move across the sky, leaving a trail of smoke before it disappeared behind Haleakala. Evangelista said he couldn't tell if the object landed on land or in the ocean.

"We didn't see any kind of explosion or flash," he said.

The object traveled roughly parallel to land until it abruptly changed course, "dropping down at a 45-degree angle," he said.

Evangelista called his friend, Charlie Fleck, who lives in Wailuku Heights. Fleck woke up, stepped outside and snapped photos at 5:49 a.m. of the smoke trail with his digital camera, but he didn't see the object itself.

"It was just an amazing looking sight," Fleck said. "The smoke lingered for an hour in the sky. . . . It was big, very noticeable in the sky."

Comment: Feeling left out because all of your friends are seeing meteors and fireballs and you haven't? Feel a slight depression coming on? Don't worry! Give it a few more months or years. If you can just hang in there, we guarantee you'll see more meteors than you can shake a stick at.

UFO Or Meteor Or Spy Plane Observed in Western Iran?

Fars News Agency
Sat, 14 Apr 2007 13:37 EDT

A radiant Unidentified Flying Object was observed in the sky of the town of Yasouj in western Iran from 20:00 to 20:30 hours local time (16:30 to 17:00 GMT) Wednesday night.

Witnesses told FNA that the object has been observed for more than an half an hour.

Witnesses also said that the UFO which was as big as a ball and with a blue color disappeared after the weather grew cloudy.

Officials declined to comment on the event.

In similar incidents in the last few months, 4 Unidentified Flying Objects were witnessed in separate cases in the same area and almost at the same time.

In one of such cases a UFO crashed in Barrez Mounts in the central province of Kerman.

Officials, then, denied reports that the explosion has been the result of a plane or chopper crash, reminding that all the passing aircrafts have been reported as sound and safe.

They also stated that investigations were underway by police and other relevant authorities in that regard.

While some reports spoke of meteors, governor general of Kohgilouyeh and Boyer Ahmad province said there were no conclusive witnesses in that regard, yet he did not dismiss the possibility that the crash has been caused by a meteor.

Eye-witnesses assured that the explosion has been caused as a result of the crash of a radiant unidentified flying object onto the ground.

Meantime, an informed source told FNA that the object has been on fire and there has been thick smoke coming out of it prior to the crash, concluding that the object couldn't have been a meteor as meteors do not smoke.

The source also said that the crash has been witnessed by people in several cities, and mentioned that the rendezvous point was located 100 kilometers from the provincial capital city of Kerman.

He said that people in the city of Rafsanjan also reported to have witnessed a similar incident several days before.

Similar crash incidents have been witnessed frequently during the last year all across Iran, and officials believe that the objects could be spy planes or hi-tech espionage devices.

Another unexplained boom - Florida

Wed, 11 Apr 2007 15:08 EDT

The explosion was heard miles away.

At Pineda Crossing, near the Suntree subdivision, John Panik said he was having trouble sleeping, got out of bed and turned on the television just before 3 a.m.

"I was sitting there and suddenly there was a loud boom," Panik said. "It shook the windows - not like a big rattle, but a little one. I thought, 'That's not normal.'"

The clock read 3:30 a.m. Panik called the Brevard County Sheriff's Office, and was told by dispatcher they'd send a deputy out to check out the area. He also contacted Patrick Air Force Base, and was told they didn't know anything about it.

"I thought it was a sonic boom," he said. "That's what I told the sheriff. Like the shuttle returning, but usually you hear two booms, not one."

This morning, reports of the explosion were all over the television.

"Everybody freaked out. My wife said, 'Oh, you did hear something,'" Panik said.

There have also been calls to FLORIDA TODAY from residents in Satellite Beach who heard the explosion.

This story is developing. If you heard the explosion and would like to comment, please contact Walker at 242-3527 or e-mail dwalker@floridatoday.com. Please include name and a phone number.

Cyclists baffled by lights in sky

Richard Gurner
The Argus
Mon, 16 Apr 2007 07:53 EDT

Strange lights were seen flying high above the coast during the early hours of Saturday morning.

Lawyer Stefan Simanowitz, 38, was cycling along the Brighton and Hove seafront with flatmate Paul Storey when the pair spotted two lights in the sky between the Palace Pier and the West Pier at 12.45am.

Mr Simanowitz, of Victoria Cottages, Hove, said: "First there were two and then they disappeared. Then we saw another one arc out along exactly the same trajectory and then that was followed by another.

"In total there were six of them all following the same path. They were maybe a couple of hundred metres out to sea. Each one appeared for about three minutes."

He added the lights were not bright white but resembled the colour of a flame and that he could offer no real explanation for them.

In November last year The Argus reported how hundreds of people reported seeing similar lights in the sky along the seafront.

After baffling the police and air traffic controllers at Shoreham Airport it was revealed the lights were in fact flying Chinese lanterns tethered together with string making them move in parallel formation.

Did you see the lights in the sky on Saturday? Do you know what they were? Send your images to pictures@theargus.co.uk.

Meteorite Traces Deep In The Ocean

Kizilova Anna
Russian Science News
Tue, 17 Apr 2007 13:14 EDT

A theory suggests a giant meteorite falling on Earth 65 million years ago and killing all dinosaurs. Russian scientists have found traces of this meteorite. During a marine expedition, organized by the Institute of Marine Geology and Geophysics (Russian Academy of Sciences) and aimed at ocean studies, the crew of the science and research ship "Morskoy Geofizik (Marine Geophysicist)" discovered an astroblem - a circular structure, which usually forms after a celestial body falls down from the sky - at the bottom in north-west of the Pacific. Researchers gave found astroblem the name "Sakhalinka". .

The processes that take place after celestial bodies fall into the ocean are studied very poorly, because scientists know location of very few underwater craters on our planet, and the fact that every new astroblem causes a tide of scientific interest and curiosity is not surprising at all. The "Sakhalinka" astroblem is unique, since it is located very deep at the ocean bottom. All known underwater craters - Chicxulub of Mexico, MjĂžlnir impact structure in the Barents Sea and Lockne of Sweden are located between 200 and 400 m, whereas Pacific astroblem lies as deep as 6 thousand meters.

During the expedition discovered crater was investigated by means of CSP (continuous seismic profiling), thus its exact contours and some other parameters were detected. Crater's diameter at 5900 m depth is 12 km, and its depth in basement topography is 7 hundred meters. Crater's centre has following geographic coordinates - 30 degrees and 15 minutes of north latitude and 170 degrees 3 minutes of east longitude.

Scientists have thought over possible conditions, which led to "Sakhalinka" astroblem formation, and their calculations suggest meteorite's diameter to reach 500 m. Statistics of meteorite falling claims that such large objects approach our planet only once in 100 thousand years. When such a meteorite falls into the ocean, it generates tsunamis with waves, higher than 10 m, 1 thousand km away from the epicenter, or the impact point in other words. However, no matter what a splash a giant celestial body makes, when it falls to the ocean, it forms no crater, when the ocean in the point of impact is deeper than 4 thousand meters. Therefore, "Sakhalinka" astroblem appeared at those times, when the ocean was much shallower than it is today.

Russian think-tank has performed a reconstruction of paleooceanologic environment, which brought researchers to a conclusion that during the Cretaceous period ocean level was about 2 km lower than its current level. Sedimentary deposits, filling the astroblem, allow stating possible crater's age - the structure most likely formed between the Cretaceous and Paleogene. And then scientists have suddenly remembered the hypothesis about Earth's collision with a giant meteorite, happened some 65 million years ago. Meteorite rounded our planet from south-west to north-east and fell to many smaller meteorites, thus forming a "crater belt", and finally fell somewhere to the ocean. Last trace of said celestial body on Earth scientists consider to be Kara cryptoexplosion structure. Bearing in mind movements of ocean plate in Cenozoic era, geologists think that "Sakhalinka" perfectly fits into the Euro-African crater belt and appeared because of said meteorite or a part of meteoritic cloud had fallen to the Earth. Everything indicates that dinosaurs were in fact killed by a giant meteorite.

Explanation for 13 cracked airplane windscreens doesn't fly!

Aviation Today
Mon, 05 Mar 2007 03:54 EST

"We have nothing at the impact sites to say this is definitively what it is." Maybe the NTSB should look again - over and through the Denver dilemma. It may not be as nitty gritty and transparent a solution as flying grit.

A Convenient but non-Credible Sleuthing?
In Air Safety Week dated 26 February ("Thirteen plus One") we reported upon some of the likely causes of the 22 windshields cracking on 14 aircraft during a 90 minute period at Denver International Airport on 16th February last. The Denver-based NTSB lead investigator Jennifer Kaiser has now come up with an FOD explanation that she thinks "flies". It's a natural phenomenon according to Jennifer. "The only commonality across aircraft type, operator, location, time and phase of flight was the wind and weather," Kaiser claimed. Despite aircraft being parked in different orientations, fine particles of grit were being swept along by gusts as high (at one stage) as 48 mph claims Kyle Fredin of the National Weather Service. On one parked aircraft, a CRJ 700, all four cockpit windows were cracked. Either the grit, or the wind, was turning corners.

SkyWest Airlines appeared to suffer the most cracked windscreens, with nine of its CRJs and Embraer Brasilias affected. Windshield fractures developed on six planes as they were taking off, some of which aborted; on one just after it had landed; on two as they were taxiing to the terminal after landing; on three as they were parked at the gate; on one as it was being pushed back from the gate; and on one while it was at 19,000 feet.

The main imponderable was that the crazed windscreens appeared on a number of different types of aircraft. The Denver Post Report however doesn't go into any finer detail except to say that the fine particles caused a fine pitting that in turn must have caused the cracking. There's no common denominator disclosed such as whether or not all the windscreens involved had thermostatic feedback mechanisms made by company X. You will recall that the ASW surmise was that a cold-soaked thermostat may not have been able to kick-start its feedback process and thus allow the heating current's inflow to be modulated. No feedback on increasing temperature of the NESA warming layer equates to a system determination of "obviously needs more heating current", which is supplied and the result is a quickly (and non-uniformly) heated NESA layer - which ultimately causes the outer layer to craze. In part, as ASW surmised, this can also be caused by the vice-like grip of the windscreen's cold-soaked frames and the many bolts clamp-holding at least three layers of transparencies that are being non-uniformly heated. Allowing 30 minutes for the cabin's APU heated cabin air to bring up the windscreen's cold-soaked metal frames and bolts to a uniform temperature with the glass is seen as the first step of a logical process of pre-heating.

Speaking as one who has flown in hail, freezing rain, snow and desert sandstorms in jets with heated windscreens, at speeds over 480mph, as a convenient solution for the 14 jet happenstance at DIA, it's all a bit see-through. For pressure of particles on a windscreen, think proportional to the square of the indicated airspeed, not just ten times Denver's peak gusts of 48 mph. AD 2007-04-09 affecting the EMB135/145 (and wef 23 Mar 07) addresses poor electrical contact due to loosening of the attaching hardware of the power cables of certain windshield temperature controllers.... to prevent overheating of the power cable terminals of the windshield temperature controllers.

The cracking, said Kaiser, occurred on the outer of the three layers of the windshields; microscopic analysis showed fine particles caused pitting that in turn caused cracking. Investigators were unable to determine the precise nature of the debris as there were no "transfer" marks of the material onto the windshields (think CSI), Kaiser said. "We have nothing at the impact sites to say this is definitively what it is." Maybe the NTSB should look again - over and through the Denver dilemma. It may not be as nitty gritty and transparent a solution as flying grit.

Comment: The analysis mentioned above is very doubtful. 13 planes with cracked wind screens within a 90minute period and with no other damage. Nor were they facing the same direction.

If it was such a common thing, then it is strange that they were puzzled in the first place. A google search will tell you that this is not very common.

If we can have inconvenient truths, it appears that we can also have convenient lies.

... or maybe it was space junk: fiery ball presents puzzle

Michael Purvis
The Sault Star
Thu, 19 Apr 2007 07:07 EDT

It wasn't a bird, and it sure wasn't a plane.

In fact, Dave Gough isn't quite certain exactly what he saw streak through the sky above the Churchill Plaza around 11 a.m. Thursday morning.

"I saw a fiery ball fly through the sky from east to west," said Gough, 54.

Local astronomy experts say it could have been anything from a meteor to a piece of space junk.

It is possible to see meteors in broad daylight, said Klaus Peltsch, an adjunct professor of astronomy at Algoma University College, and president of the Twin Saults Astronomy Club.

"There have been many recorded examples of daytime meteors," said Peltsch. "It's unusual though, so the question would be did anyone else see it to corroborate the fact that the event did occur."

April 16 to 25 is the peak of a shower of Lyrid meteors, making it possible that's what Gough saw, said John Shibley, a contributing editor to Astronomy Magazine who works in Lake Superior State University's communications department in Sault Ste. Marie, Mich.

The mostly tiny meteors are debris left over from Comet Thatcher, which the earth passes through once a year.

"This comet leaves junk along its orbit and the earth passes through where the comet has been," said Shibley. "It's like a car driving through a flock of bugs and they hit your window, same thing."

The vast majority of these meteors are the size of a grain of sand. In order for someone to spot one during the day, "it has to be big," said Shibley.

Shibley said another explanation is that it was a spent rocket booster or piece of space junk burning up as its orbit decays.

He said spent rocket boosters are "quite spectacular to see," leaving sparkles in their trail as they shatter on the earth's atmosphere.

"If he didn't see a lot of streamers and sparkles going behind it, it may not have been a piece of space junk," said Shibley.

City police received "no calls whatsoever of a fiery red ball," said Sgt. Lisa Kenopic.

Green fiery ball streaks across Colorado skies

Sun, 22 Apr 2007 08:07 EDT

A bright flash in the black and white video posted on the web site cloudbait.com shows what many people on the front range witnessed firsthand Friday night, a meteor burning up in the skies above western Colorado. Astronomer Chris Peterson runs the website from his home in Guffey which doubles as an observatory and astronomy lab.

Peterson says Friday night's meteor was pretty rare, normally happening only once or twice a year. "These things are so bright and so sudden and they're so beautiful they're kind of a once in a lifetime thing when you see one and people really really remember them," Peterson said.
Together with the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, Peterson's backyard laboratory monitors a network of cameras and telescopes across the state all set up to capture events like Friday night's fire ball. "They look at the sky all night long and so when these events happen we catch them on multiple cameras and we can triangulate," Peterson explains.
He says the unusual angle of the flare ruled it out from being part of the annual Lyrid meteor show which is taking place this weekend. "It was just a sporadic fireball, a big piece of space debris that came in and burned up over the western half of the state."
But for just being space debris, it certainly put on quite a show. Jody Wolkensdorfer of Colorado Springs wrote to News First ,"My first though was, WOW...that is a very long lasting falling star! Then all of the sudden there was a very large green ball which turned into a bright red fiery ball with sparks and flashed everywhere in the sky."
Carol Dial's son was skate boarding at Goose Gossage park when they saw the meteor. The teens ran to the car to grab a video camera but the light had already left.
Both reported seeing the meteor drop in the mountains either behind Garden of the Gods or the U.S. Air Force Academy. In reality it burned up in the atmosphere several miles above Western Colorado near the Utah boarder.
Peterson says it's common for people to misjudge how close a meteor really is. "Usually people think meteors are landing really close and they're not," Peterson said. "There's an illusion at night, you don't have good depth perception, you don't know how far away something is and so, you see something bright, it comes down and it's eventually very far away."
Peterson encourages people who witnessed Friday's meteor to email him a report.
The Colorado Springs Astronomical Society is planning a public star party at Bear Creek Park in Colorado Springs Saturday and Sunday night to watch the Lyrid shower.
Click here to watch the meteor as it burns up.

Comment: "Peterson says Friday night's meteor was pretty rare, normally happening only once or twice a year."

Remember this sighting that was reported in early January as 'space junk'.

Looks like Denver has hit its quota for the year and it is only April.

Possible alien stone found near Seattle

Wed, 25 Apr 2007 09:02 EDT

University of Washington research engineer Bill Beaty is set to test a piece of stone purported to have fallen from an alien spacecraft 60 years ago.

Philip Lipson and Charlette LeFevre, who run the Seattle Museum of the Mysteries, have been researching for years a story that began in June 1947 when a government employee swore he saw flying saucers three days after a Tacoma man said similar UFOs had dropped metal and lava onto his boat, the Seattle Post-Intelligencer reported Monday.

"You don't want to know how complicated and bizarre this is," said LeFevre.

Lipson and LeFevre said they believe that 60 years ago a B-52 bomber crashed while carrying slag from a UFO.

They now have a black chunk of rock that may be their best clue, and Beaty will test the rock this week.

"You can tell it's been liquid because it's all full of bubbles," said Beaty. "We have to look at the bedrock in the hill and see what's there. If it looks like that, then it's probably the same."

"If this is totally different than the bedrock that's there, then this will be very interesting," he added.

A Mystery Wrapped in a Strange Black Rock is Chunk from Outer Space or Just a Piece of Poppycock?

Casey McNerthney
Seattle Post-Intelligencer
Wed, 25 Apr 2007 09:04 EDT

Unidentified flying discs. Secret military missions. Government cover-ups.

The story Philip Lipson and Charlette LeFevre have been researching for years has almost all the elements of a made-for-TV movie.

As the story goes, a government employee swore he saw flying saucers three days after a Tacoma man said similar UFOs spewed metal and lava onto his boat. There was even a man in black.

A witness later recanted his statement - some say out of fear - after a military plane supposedly transporting classified debris exploded into flames.

"You don't want to know how complicated and bizarre this is," said LeFevre, who, with Lipson, runs the Seattle Museum of the Mysteries on Capitol Hill.

Lipson and LeFevre believe that 60 years ago a plane that crashed in Kelso contained slag from a UFO. They've tracked down newspaper stories and testimony, and gathered the clues at their museum.

But it's the black chunk of rock they keep locked in a glass case that may be their best clue, and a scientist may test the rock this week.

Officially, the story is poppycock. The government dismissed it as such decades ago.

Damaging debris

On June 21, 1947, Harold Dahl was salvaging logs near the shore of Maury Island. Dahl said that at 2 p.m. he saw six doughnut-shaped aircraft, about 100 feet in diameter.

He said five of the metallic aircraft, which didn't appear to have signs of propulsion, circled above one, which dropped to about 500 feet and spewed what he thought was 20 tons of metal and molten rock.

Dahl reported to co-worker Fred Crisman that the falling debris injured his 15-year-old son, killed their dog and damaged the boat's wheelhouse.

Three days later, U.S. Forest Service employee Kenneth Arnold said he saw nine similar flying saucers between Mount Rainier and Mount Adams. The Associated Press published Arnold's claims that when one of the aircraft dipped, the others did, too.

The day after Dahl's sighting, a man in a black suit arrived at his Tacoma home in a black 1947 Buick, Dahl said later. Books by UFO historians say the man in black threatened Dahl, saying that if he cared about his family, he'd never speak of the incident again.

He spoke of it at least one more time in July 1947, when he met with Arnold in a secret meeting in Room 502 of Tacoma's Winthrop Hotel. Arnold wrote about the meeting in his 1952 book, and said they were also joined by United Airlines pilot Capt. E.J. Smith - another who claimed to see the discs - as well as Air Force Lt. Frank M. Brown and Capt. William L. Davidson.

Smith told The Idaho Statesman that Brown and Davidson were given six pieces of "metal or lava."

The chunks were loaded onto a B-25 bomber at McChord Field to be shipped to a California military base, according to the now-defunct Tacoma Times.

B-25 crash

It was still dark in the early morning of Aug. 1, 1947, when a fire erupted in the left engine of the B-25.

Longview police officers reported watching the B-25 circle over Longview and Kelso, leaving a streak of smoke behind the burning motor.

When attempts to extinguish the fire failed, two other crew members - Sgt. Elmer L. Taft and Tech. Sgt. Woodrow D. Matthews - parachuted to safety. Brown and Davidson, who some believe knew there were UFO parts on the plane, stayed with the bomber.

The B-25 crashed into the base of three alder trees. Brown and Davidson's mangled bodies were thrown clear.

On Aug. 3, 1947, an Associated Press report said the men died investigating flying saucers.

Black chunk

Kelso resident James Greear heard about the crash 10 years ago and had made several attempts to find clues. He found almost nothing in the woods until earlier this month, when Bob Davenport told him the exact location. Davenport, now 75, was 15 at the time of the crash and one of the first people to rush to the wreckage.

Greear went to the crash site April 15 with Lipson and LeFevre.

In the north fork of Globe Creek, a friend of Greear's found a black chunk slightly larger than a softball that looks as if it could have once been lava.

"We are not making any claims of what it is," Lipson said.

But he and LeFevre are hopeful.

"You can tell it's been liquid because it's all full of bubbles," said Bill Beaty, a research engineer in the University of Washington's Chemistry Department. He plans to have a colleague analyze the chunk this week.

"We have to look at the bedrock in the hill and see what's there," he said. "If it looks like that, then it's probably the same.

"If this is totally different than the bedrock that's there, then this will be very interesting."

Rarely spoke of sighting

Though popular among conspiracy theorists, Dahl's claim that a UFO spewed debris onto his boat is likely to remain folklore.

"I didn't know anything about it until 2003 when a man from Sacramento sent me about 50 pages of research about it," said Dahl's 76-year-old daughter, Louise Bakotich of Aberdeen. Though Arnold insisted his sighting was real, Dahl rarely spoke of his sighting after 1947, and often said it was a hoax when he did. Charles Dahl, who was supposedly injured by the falling debris, didn't confirm the injuries before his death, his sister said.

The Army and Air Force have repeatedly denied that UFO fragments were on the B-25 flight. An August 1947 document, said to be from FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover, states that the story of the B-25 having flying disc fragments was a hoax.

Those statements, however, only fuel the curiosity of UFO researchers such as Lipson and LeFevre.

"We're starting where they left off 60 years ago," LeFevre said. "There's a lot more out there."

P-I news researcher Marsha Milroy and P-I librarian Lytton Smith contributed to this story.

-I reporter Casey McNerthney can be reached at 206-448-8220

or caseymcnerthney@seattlepi.com.


Seattle Museum of the Mysteries is at 623 Broadway Ave. E. General admission is a $3 suggested donation. Children 15 and younger are free. Hours vary. Large groups are asked to call ahead: 206-328-6499. The museum's Web site is HERE

FBI documents relating to the Dahl sighting: goto.seattlepi.com/r687


JUNE 21: Harold Dahl says he saw six doughnut-shaped aircraft, about 100 feet in diameter.

JUNE 24: U.S. Forest Service employee Kenneth Arnold says he saw nine similar flying saucers south of Mount Rainier.

AUG. 1: A B-25 airplane leaves McChord Field in Tacoma and crashes near Kelso. A United Airlines captain says that "metal or lava" associated with the mystery flying objects was on board.

'UFO debris' may be lava or meteor chunk

Casey McNerthney
Seattle Post-Intelligencer
Thu, 26 Apr 2007 13:56 EDT

The University of Washington research engineer who analyzed a mysterious black fragment that some thought was debris from a UFO said it's probably a meteor chunk or old lava.

Related content

· Is strange rock from UFO or just a piece of poppycock?

"I'm not a geologist, but this looks like old lava or maybe ancient mud to me, because it's all full of little gas pockets, and gas pockets have crystals coating the inner walls," chemistry department researcher Bill Beaty said in an analysis

Watch a video of the analysisWatch a video of the analysis

"If it's got little crystal incrustations, then at one point it had to be deeply buried."

The rock was recovered April 15 from the 1947 crash site of a B-25. The bomber was said to have been carrying six chunks of "metal or lava" spewed from a UFO that were recovered off Maury Island.

On June 21, 1947, former Tacoma resident Harold Dahl said he saw six doughnut-shaped aircraft hover above his boat, which was salvaging logs on Maury Island. He said one of the discs hovered to about 500 feet and released what he thought was 20 tons of metal and molten rock.

"My personal theory is that the entire UFO incident was just an exploding stony meteor," Beaty said. "If a meteor comes in at 90 degrees right above you, you would see huge fireballs that aren't moving sideways; maybe several of them if the rock broke up from tidal forces. ... And then a whole bunch of hot rocks falls on your fishing boat."

The story was first reported in 1947, and since the Seattle P-I reported this week that the recovered rock is being displayed at the Seattle Museum of the Mysteries, owners have received dozens of calls and e-mails.

Charlette LeFevre, who runs the museum with Philip Lipson, said they plan to have the rock analyzed at least twice more, including a chemical analysis.

"To me it's very interesting that at the very impact site of the crash, we found slag similar to what has been found at Maury Island," said LeFevre, whose rock made international news, including a mention on Art Bell's weekend radio program. "We can't say that it's the exact slag that was on the flight, but we will keep investigating."

Since the P-I story, LeFevre said, the museum also has been contacted by people who claim to have information about flying saucers over Seattle in June 1947 -- the same month U.S. Forest Service employee Kenneth Arnold reported seeing nine saucers between Mount Rainier and Mount Adams.

"We now have three independent reports of discs specifically seen over Seattle," she said. "There's a lot more than just Kenneth Arnold."
P-I reporter Casey McNerthney can be reached at 206-448-8220 or caseymcnerthney@seattlepi.com.

Meteor photographed exploding above Zagreb, Croatia

Short Translation by SOTT Forum member
Sun, 29 Apr 2007 10:39 EDT

A Meteor weighing about 300 grams and falling in an angle at about 90 deegres and with a speed of about 40 km per second exploded above Zagreb at an estimated height of 60 km, just 1,5 second before hitting the ground, and made a flash as strong as 300 to 400 megawatts.

Explosion photographed from 3 cities thanks to Croatian students meteor watch network.

Meteor was part of Lyrid, meteor rain, and was made of ice and silicate.

Comment: There is the usual disclaimer of these events, that it is just part of the Lyrid meteor rain and implied therein, that there is nothing to worry about.

If there is nothing to worry about then why is there a total media blackout of this event outside Croatia?

That is more telling than anything, especially in light of numerous similar events in recent times.

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