What was the Bright Light in the Sky Sunday Night?
If you happened to be outside late Sunday evening, you may have seen a bright light in the sky. But what was it?
It was around 11:40 pm on Sunday, June 19th (Father's Day) when a number of people in several states saw a bright meteor. Many people were discussing it late Sunday night and into Monday on Reddit.
The video was recorded in Maple Park, Illinois, which is west of Chicago near Dekalb.
The National Weather Service in Grand Rapids released the following statement on Facebook on Monday:
Around 11:40 PM EDT Sunday, a number of people in Michigan and nearby states spotted a bright meteor. Estimated to have traveled from south to north over southern Lake Michigan. Meteors like this are typically visible when they are 50 miles above earth's surface, in the upper reaches of the atmosphere. For comparison, most of the thunderstorm clouds we see in Michigan only climb about 5 to 10 miles into the atmosphere, and cruising altitude for a commercial jet aircraft is about 7 miles high.
The American Meteor Society had 181 reports of people seeing the meteor in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin. The society mapped out the locations where people witnessed the light in the sky. You can see that map here.
The report also included one photo of the meteor from Thomas S. in Chicago...
June is a Busy Month for Meteors
The month of June is known for having the most intense period of meteors of the year, even more than the August Perseids and the December Geminids meteor showers. , as the best and most intense of the year. The June Zeta Perseids peaked on the 17th of June and the Beta Taurids will peak on the 29th.
If you are outside in the coming weeks, especially on nights when the skies are clear, look up and you may see a meteor or two -- or more!