NASA confirms a 55,000 mph fireball lit up the sky with a sonic boom

NASA has confirmed the existence of a fireball that entered Earth's atmosphere at 55,000 mph and caused a sonic boom to be heard.

Published Fri, Apr 29 2022 1:35 AM CDT   |   Updated Sat, May 21 2022 9:11 PM CDT

On the morning of April 27, a small flaming meteor dashed across the sky with about thirty eyewitnesses, but many felt its boom.

NASA confirms a 55,000 mph fireball lit up the sky with a sonic boom 01 |

NASA has taken to its blog to detail the event, and the space agency explains that the fireball was a meteor estimated to be about a foot in diameter entering Earth's atmosphere over southern Mississippi. The meteor was first spotted about 54 miles above the Mississippi River near the town of Alcorn, and according to NASA, the 90-pound space rock was traveling 55,000 miles per hour throughout the atmosphere, disintegrating and fragmenting as it pushed deeper.

As the meteor heated up from friction and fragmented, NASA estimates it generated the same amount of energy as 3 tons of TNT (trinitrotoluene), "which created shock waves that propagated to the ground, producing the booms and vibrations felt by people in the area," writes NASA. Notably, as the fireball heated up, it shone bright, and at its peak, it was ten times brighter than the full moon. Eventually, the fireball fully disintegrated about 34 miles above a swampy area close to Minorca in Louisiana.

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Jak joined the TweakTown team in 2017 and has since reviewed 100s of new tech products and kept us informed daily on the latest science and space news. Jak's love for science, space, and technology, and, more specifically, PC gaming, began at 10 years old. It was the day his dad showed him how to play Age of Empires on an old Compaq PC. Ever since that day, Jak fell in love with games and the progression of the technology industry in all its forms. Instead of typical FPS, Jak holds a very special spot in his heart for RTS games.

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