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Look out for a fireball over the Channel early tomorrow, 2023 Feb 13 02:59 UTC

Started by Rick, Feb 12, 2023, 23:38:20

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There's another potential fireball that's been discovered in advance of it entering the Earth's atmosphere. It's due to arrive at about 02:59 UTC on 13th February 2023, somewhere just off the coast of northern France east of Le Havre.

Nick James posted the following to the Global Meteor Network mailing list:
QuotePeter Birtwhistle has reported that NEOCP object Sar2667 is showing a probable impact over northern France tomorrow morning. It is tiny, only around 1m, so it will burn up in the atmosphere but it could be a spectacular fireball.

The latest impact prediction is: 2023 Feb 13 02:59 UTC at lat +49.81751, lon E 0.43452

The current astrometry covers a short arc but is of good quality.



Unfortunately most of the UK was cloudy, but folk along the south coast and folk across the channel got some great views. The object has now been officially named 2023 CX1: https://minorplanetcenter.net/mpec/K23/K23CA3.html

It is the seventh time an object has been discovered just prior to entry. The previous ones being 2008 TC3, 2014 AA, 2018 LA, 2019 MO, 2022 EB5 and 2022 WJ1. There's a collection of observation reports on https://fireball.imo.net/members/imo_view/event/2023/937

Various videos on social media. For example:



I've looked at the raw data from my (completely clouded out) meteor camera, and there is a bright flash at about 02:59.20 UTC, so the fireball certainly lit up the sky briefly. No useful image, of course...


A few GMN cameras seem to have managed to capture something useful, but there was a lot of cloud about, and the meteor was very bright so cameras that did see it got saturated. The automatic analysis doesn't work well in those conditions, but it's possible some manual analysis will get useful results.


Nick James posted to the Global Meteor Network mailing list about the seven (so far) pre-entry discoveries:
QuoteThe discoveries have all been from the northern hemisphere (actually only three observatories, two in the US and one in Hungary) but one of the impacts was in the southern hemisphere. Most of the Earth's surface is water so it is quite unlikely for an impact to be over land. The rate of discovery of these small objects pre-impact has increased over the last few years. The CNEOS data shows that there is no northern hemisphere bias. It is just that there are more observers there.

Of the seven pre-discovered impactors so far:

2008 TC3 was discovered by CSS at Mt. Lemmon and landed in Sudan with recovery of a lot of material.

2014 AA was discovered by CSS at Mt. Lemmon probably landed in the Atlantic between Africa and Central America.

2018 LA was discovered CSS at Mt. Lemmon and landed in Botswana.

2019 MO was discovered by ATLAS at Mauna Loa and landed in the Carribbean.

2022 EB5 was discovered by Konkoly Observatory, Hungary and landed somewhere between Greenland and Iceland.

2022 WJ1 was discovered by CSS, Mt. Lemmon and landed in Lake Ontario. I don't think any fragments were found but Denis will know about that one!

2023 CX1 was another Konkoly discovery and landed on the north coast of France. A search for falls is underway.

Many of the larger impactors appear in the declassified CNEOS data but 2014 AA is missing. The two recent ones (2023 CX1 and 2022 WJ1) were very small, probably a metre or less given how faint they were before they hit the atmosphere.