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What is a fireball meteor?

Have you ever seen a very bright meteor? Congratulations, you most likely saw a fireball! A fireball is simply a bright meteor streaking across the sky. Compared to the planet Venus which is about -4 magnitude, a fireball has to be brighter than Venus. Fireballs come in a variety of speeds and even colours. Bright meteors, fireballs, occur randomly throughout the year and we tend to see small explosions. UKMON usually records half a dozen of these types of events.

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What is a bolide meteor?

Compared to a fireball, a bolide is even brighter than the fireball, which is brighter than a normal meteor. I know, we could not make this simpler. Bolide fireball meteors are those heavyweight class of fireballs, brighter than the moon, with ability to cast a shadow. With Bolide fireballs, it also tends to be a case where we can see a large terminal explosion and seen fragmentation. These events happen fairly rarely, maybe once per year or two. The last one we recorded was the St. Patrick's Day fireball.

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Why we need your reports

Our cameras don't cover 100% of the sky, and sometimes we miss important fireball events. The public reports help us tremendously.

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How we handle the data

All your data is sent to the International Meteor Organisation. UKMON does not handle or keep any of your information.

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How to set up meteor camera

If you find it exciting, you can always set up your own camera and join the UKMON community of citizen scientists.

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UK network coverage

Check out the latest network coverage over the UK. There are three camera systems, and we are adding cameras all the time.

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