Bright burning meteor lights up sky in eastern S'pore on May 24

Quick, make a wish.

Ilyda Chua | May 25, 2024, 06:46 PM



If you happen to have been looking at the full moon on the night of May 24, you might also have seen something else: a meteor fireball.

The fireball, which appeared in the sky as a "bright burning flash", was reportedly sighted in east Singapore at around 11:47pm.

A few onlookers even managed to capture the phenomenon on camera.

Video from Priyanka Vijoy

Photo from YK Chia

One Facebook user who managed to capture the phenomenon on camera said that she initially intended to record a video of the full moon "since it looked really beautiful".

She had been at her home near Bedok Reservoir when she saw a bright flash.

"I just happened to be fortunate enough to capture the meteor on camera — it took me by surprise!" the user, who goes by the name Priyanka Vijoy, told Mothership.

"At first I thought it was part of some fireworks celebration but I realised after a while that it was actually a meteor! Truly grateful."

A meteor

Astronomy enthusiast Gerardyn Brittos identified the phenomenon is a particularly bright meteor, also known as a fireball.

"It's not rare, quite common. Just see if you are lucky enough to face the right direction at the right time," she explained.

Also known as a bollide, a fireball is a meteor big enough to be seen over a very wide area.

Meteors are basically rocks that fall into the Earth's atmosphere. Sometimes, due to friction, pressure, and chemical reactions with atmospheric gases, the rocks heat up and radiate energy, leading to the pretty light displays we see on the ground.

While fireballs usually do not survive passage into the atmosphere intact, fragments are sometimes recovered on the ground, according to NASA.

These, we call meteorites.

Pretty cool.

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Top image by Priyanka Vijoy and YK Chia