Fwd = [SO] Space Debris Enters Midwest Sky
- Forwarded by: fwestra@... (Frits Westra)
Originally from: Skyopen@yahoogroups.com
Original Subject: [SO] Digest Number 845
Original Date: 3 Dec 2001 12:08:08 -0000
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Date: Sun, 2 Dec 2001 10:51:00 EST
Subject: Space Debris Enters Midwest Sky
Space Debris Enters Midwest Sky
.c The Associated Press
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) - Streaks of brilliant light that were spotted from
Texas to Nebraska on Saturday night apparently were caused by space debris
breaking up, authorities said.
A dispatcher at the Kansas Turnpike Authority in Wichita said callers
reported the lights from the Oklahoma border to near Kansas City.
In Hastings, Neb., meteorologist Larry Wirth of the National Weather Service
said callers described a bright light that crossed the horizon from southwest
to northeast and broke.
``People said it appeared to break up into about 30 little balls, with tails,
more or less like fireworks,'' Wirth said.
Wirth said NORAD - the North American Air Defense Command - reported to the
Federal Aviation Administration's regional center in Minneapolis that some
kind of space debris had broken up in the atmosphere.
NORAD monitors satellites and space debris that re-enters the atmosphere.
The Associated Press received telephone calls about the lights from Oklahoma
City, Tulsa, Enid, Edmond, Owasso, Shawnee and McAlester, Okla. Broadcasters
reported that the lights were seen as far away as Denison, Texas.
Witnesses in Oklahoma reported seeing three or four long streaks of light
moving across the sky. They said the streaks appeared to produce sparks as
In Topeka, weather service meteorologist Matt Wolters said such light shows
are not uncommon when space debris enters the atmosphere.
But Saturday night's display was noticed over such a wide area because the
night sky was especially clear, Wolters said.
Copyright 2001 The Associated Press. The information contained in the AP news
report may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or otherwise distributed
without the prior written authority of The Associated Press. All active
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