This Huge Daylight Fireball Soared Over Wyoming Back in 1972
I have a pretty good memory, but even I didn't remember the time back in 1972 when a huge fireball soared over Wyoming in broad daylight.
I found this rare video while stumbling around YouTube looking for something else. It's what appears to be 8 mm video that was taken near Grand Teton National Park. The description on YouTube is in Spanish, so I've done a little Google Translate for the backstory on what happened:
On August 10, 1972 a fireball furrowed the Earth's atmosphere from Utah to Alberta for 101 seconds, traveling a distance of 1000 miles at a speed of 14.7 kilometers per second. The asteroid was filmed by Linda Baker from Grand Teton National Park and a satellite from the US military detected infrared atmospheric radiometry. With a size between 2 and 80 meters in diameter, had it hit the surface, it would have formed a crater the size of a medium-sized city.
Come to find out, there is a Wikipedia page with even more information about this object. It says that analysis of the video has many believing it was part of a comet or asteroid. Wikipedia also states that a witness in Missoula saw the object go directly overhead and create a huge sonic boom.
Here's how it appeared in a video taken in Canada.
It's not uncommon in our part of the world to see fireballs at night, but one this size that actually lit up the daytime sky is one for the record books. We can all be thankful this one passed above us in the sky and didn't make impact as it would likely have leveled a city the size of Casper or Missoula.