Meteor Over Melbourne Goes ‘Boom’

Residents of Melbourne were woken up by a loud ‘boom’ around midnight last night. Was it a Meteor Over Melbourne?

A loud ‘boom’ woke up Residents in Victoria last night around 12am. If you were lucky enough to be outside at the time, you would’ve seen the spectacle that caused it burning up in the night sky. But what caused it?

According to experts, the ‘meteor’ wasn’t actually a meteor or a comet, and was probably just space junk that entered our atmosphere above Melbourne.

Professor Alan Duffy, an Astronomer at Swinburne University, told 3AW that the space junk burnt up for 30 to 40 seconds, causing the “biggest light show” he’d even seen.

The space junk was likely to be man-made and very dense, weighing at least a couple of tonnes. “The fact that again it was burning so brightly for so long tells you that it’s big,” says Professor Duffy.

From the University of Tasmania, Astronomer Martin George said there’s a chance the space junk may have fallen off a Russian rocket launched recently to activate a navigation satellite.

Meteor Over Melbourne Goes 'Boom' as it enters the Earth's atmosphere

The space junk burning up in our atmosphere. (Twitter)

This incredible footage from Stewart on Twitter shows the meteor trailing across the sky over Richmond in Melbourne.

What caused the ‘boom’?

The ‘boom’ was heard by Melbournians far and wide, even reaching those in Regional Victoria as far down as Bendigo and Geelong. This is because of how quicky it slowed down. As it entered Earth’s atmosphere at approximately 25,000km/h or 7km/second, it slows down dramatically, creating a sonic boom. This sonic boom was heard throughout the state. It could easily be mistaken for an earthquake as it rattled and shook the ground around us.

The Australian Space Agency is investigating the event.

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