Impressive fireball crossing Mediterranean Sea on December 4th

final ma

At 04h08 UT of last December 4th, an impressive fireball crossed the skies from North Africa to south of Ibiza Island.

As the angle of penetration into our atmosphere was very low, the object bounced off the atmosphere. Its final altitude was higher than the initial one converting  it into an Earth Grazer fireball.

SMART Project's detectors operated at Calar Alto (Almería), Sierran Nevada (Granada), La Sagra (Granada), Seville, Aljarafe and Huelva observatories, registered this event.

Some of the external cameras of Calar Alto Observatory, also recorded this event. 

As usual, Professor José María Madiedo (Instituto de Astrofísica de Andalucía IAA-CSIC) the SMART Project PI, has carried out the preliminary analysis of this object and his first conclusions (more research are ongoing on this object) have been as follows:

  • Event type: Cometary.
  • Estimated Speed: 83.000 km/h.
  • Initial altitude 99 km
  • Final altitude 100 km

The path this fireball followed above Mediterranan Sea shows the incredible lenhgth of this fireball.


Below are the Awesome videos registered with the Calar Alto Observatory external cameras and the SMART Project camera. 

1. Start of the fireball

2. Continuation and end of the fireball

3. Accelerated video with 360º camera

4. SMART Project detector

5. South camera

6. East camera

Calar Alto (CAHA) fireball detection station, together with the one at the Observatory of Sierra Nevada (IAA-CSIC) and others placed at different locations in Spain, are part of the S.M.A.R.T. project led by Professor José María Madiedo (IAA) to track that kind of objects. Specifically, Calar Alto (CAHA) station and the one at Sierra Nevada (IAA-CSIC) constitute a collaboration agreement between the IAA researcher José María Madiedo and both institutions.