Krugersdorpers spot meteorite slicing through the sky

For illustrative purposes only. A meteorite in space as seen by Nasa. Photo: NASA

Krugersdorpers went nuts about the meteorite that fell to earth near Krugersdorp North this morning, 15 June at about 6am.

Kaylem Cronje said in a Facebook post that he was on his way to work when the meteorite fell into the atmosphere.

Corné Breydenbach asked his friends if it was indeed a meteor.

“We also saw it. It had a greenish light with a tail that sparkled with light,” said Corné.

He joked, saying that he initially thought it was a petrol bomb because he knew about the taxi strikes taking place in Midrand.

Yolandé de Koker was on the N14 heading in the direction of Centurion when the meteor appeared.

“I almost hit my husband in the face when I suddenly saw it and pointed in its direction,” said Yolandé. “It was super bright, then it faded and disappeared.”

Related article: Meteorite bashing changed Earth’s chemistry: study

This sighting might have been beautiful, but considering that Nasa recently released a statement saying that there were 10 potentially hazardous asteroids that are too close to earth, one might just want to contain one’s excitement.

Read the full article here: http://www.express.co.uk/news/science/815697/ASTEROID-WARNING-NASA-discovers-potentially-hazardous

It’s not clear whether or not this meteorite reached the Earth’ s surface. Nasa claims that space rocks smaller than about 25 meters (about 82 feet) across will most likely burn up as they enter the Earth’s atmosphere and cause little or no damage.

Ten fun facts about meteorites:

• A meteoroid is a small rock or particle of debris in our solar system.

• They range in size from dust to about 10 metres in diameter (larger objects are usually referred to as asteroids).

• A meteoroid that burns up as it passes through the Earth’s atmosphere is known as a meteor. If you’ve ever looked up at the sky at night and seen a streak of light or ‘shooting star’, what you are actually seeing is a meteor.

• A meteoroid that survives falling through the Earth’s atmosphere and colliding with the Earth’s surface is known as a meteorite.

• The fastest meteoroids travel through the solar system at a speed of about 42 kilometres per second (26 miles per second). The Earth’s atmosphere experiences millions of meteors every day.

• Meteors are easier to see during the lower light conditions of night. A small percentage of meteoroids fly on a path that goes into the Earth’s atmosphere and then back out again. They are known as Earth-grazing fireballs.

• When many meteors occur in a short time frame in the same part of the sky, the phenomenon is called a meteor shower.

• About 500 meteorites reach the Earth’s surface every year, but of those only about five ever make it to scientists for study.

• Meteorites that are observed as they fall through the Earth’s atmosphere and later recovered are called ‘falls’; all others are called ‘finds’.

• To date there has been about 1 000 collected ‘falls’ and 40 000 ‘finds’.

Unsure why a meteoroid is different to meteor, comet or asteroid?

Be sure to learn the difference between these three heavenly bodies by visiting http://www.sciencekids.co.nz.

Do you perhaps have more information pertaining to this story? Email us at [email protected] or phone us on 011 955 1130.

For free daily local news on the West Rand, also visit our sister websites: 

Randfontein Herald

Roodepoort Record

Get It Joburg West Magazine

Remember to visit our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages to let your voice be heard!

  AUTHOR
Bianca Pindral
Journalist

Latest News

COMMENTS

Top