Goodness, gracious—that really was a great ball of fire in the sky.
People all over Northern Virginia have reported spotting a fireball in the sky Friday night around 8 p.m. The American Meteor Society, at the time of this writing, has over 300 pending reports of a fireball.
Have a picture of tonight's fireball? Share it here!
Twitter and Facebook users described the amazing sight. @chuckywallace wrote, "Definitely saw it in Alexandria. My wife thought it was a flare! Very bright and lasted several solid seconds. There were two flashes as it continued to break apart."
Zane P., from Alexandria, wrote, "This one lasted a lot longer than most other fireballs I've seen. I expected sound as it kept getting closer, brighter and kept exploding. It exploded twice as it streaked across the sky."
So what is a fireball, anyway? Basically, it's a very bright meteor. The American Meteor Society describes it this way:
"A fireball is another term for a very bright meteor, generally brighter than magnitude -4, which is about the same magnitude of the planet Venus in the morning or evening sky. A bolide is a special type of fireball which explodes in a bright terminal flash at its end, often with visible fragmentation."
The society asks that anyone who spots a fireball record details on its website.