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Incedible Impact Photo

  1. Dec 7, 2004 #1


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    Hey, anyone seen this incredible photo??

    Impact pic

    Much larger pic

    APOD article

    http://www.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,4057,11480527%255E13569,00.html [Broken]

    It appears to be the first ever recorded image of a meteor impacting the Earth (though for some reason, they're saying they don't think it was a meteor).

    Note the impact and surrounding cloud of debris.

    It is a very high-quality pic. There are before-and-after shots too (see APOD article). I've been digitally playing with them to find more clues. Experts have examined the pic and believe the image has not been digitally altered.

    The APOD article mentions an online discussion about it, but the link's rotted. Anyone know where to read more about this?
    Last edited by a moderator: May 1, 2017
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 7, 2004 #2
    frozen poop-cicle from an airliner?
  4. Dec 7, 2004 #3


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    Dearly Missed


    but seriously, slant trajectory shows it
    coming in much too fast for dropped poop
  5. Dec 7, 2004 #4


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    BadAstronomy says its likely a bug flying across the front of the camera. There are several reasons why its probably not a meteor:

    -Angle too shallow
    -Light pole was inspected and wasn't damaged
    -Streak does not intersect the light pole
  6. Dec 8, 2004 #5

    Ivan Seeking

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    I don't know how to account for the apparent smoke trail or the light blur around the pole, but to me it looks like we may be seeing the light burn out; perhaps just as it starts to turns on. The lightbulb was found to be failed and it appears that other lights nearby are already on.

    Either that or a USAF energy weapon accidently fired during target practice. :biggrin:
  7. Dec 8, 2004 #6

    Ivan Seeking

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    In fact, looking at this a little more.... What strikes me also is the possiblity of a failed step leader from a lightning strike. In addition the main strike which might be a good distance away, many tendrils can exist that carry relatively little current but that do actually count as small strikes - certainly energy enough to blow a lighbulb. I have seen footage of one storm chaser who was hit by such a strike. Due to the relatively small current involved he was able to walk away and talk about it. I have also seen that puffs of smoke can be seen in some daytime strikes; in fact on rare occasion large smoke rings can appear and cause quite a fuss [I have posted a BBC picture of one in the past]. Finally, step leaders travel in straight lines for jumps of about 50 meters and at about 1/6 C, so a straight dark line over the distance shown seems possible for a failed step leader.
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2004
  8. Dec 8, 2004 #7
    Was a remnant of the alleged meteor found at all? Because if that's what it was wouldn't you have something left over for evidence?
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