Re: (meteorobs) November 16 fireball

I have a good radio forward scatter record of the Nov 16 midwest
fireball.  At my location (Urbana, IL -- 40 06 13 N, 88 12 55 W) the
signal is first detectable at 18h 04m 05s Central Standard Time and
lasts for about 90 seconds.  On the tape are heard the simultaneous
forward scattered echoes from six transmitters, and it is a marvelous,
rip-roaring cacaphony of sound!

The receiver was listening to 83.24 MHz, but I don't know where any of
the transmitters are located.  At the beginning of the event the echo's
pitch drops from 1165 Hz to 850 Hz in 3.65 seconds.  It will take a
little more data to yield a good velocity but that's a start.

This may have been a satellite reentry, but of course it *did* happen at
the time of day when most big fireballs, bolides and meteorite falls
happen.  The big stuff is asteroidal and, because of the way asteroid
derived orbits cross the earth's orbit, these bodies tend catch up to
the earth from behind, i.e. 6 pm plus or minus a few hours.  I've seen
several really big fireballs in the last 30 years and they've all
happened in the late afternoon and early evening.  So a natural meteor
is a sufficient explanation.

Aart Olsen
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