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Meteor fireball lights up mid-Autumn night sky in NW Yunnan

Updated:2017-10-07 16:46:11   

A large meteor illuminated the mid-Autumn night sky in China's Yunnan Province on Wednesday, with onlookers capturing footage of the fireball.

The meteor entered the Earth's atmosphere at around 8pm local time, with the meteorite falling in a village some 40 km from the city of Shangri-La in northwest Yunnan.

With China celebrating the Mid-Autumn Festival on Wednesday, many people were outside observing the full Moon, meaning a greater chance of such a dazzling yet short-lived event being filmed.

NASA's Centre for Near Earth Object Studies (CNEOS), which belongs to the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), reported the event as having the force of 540 tonnes of TNT.

The object was heading at a speed of 14.6 km/s and was observed by NASA at an altitude of 37 km , some 164 km northwest of the city, RT reported.

A resident of a nearby village told Chinese television that he heard a loud sound and felt mild tremors.

There have been no reports of casualties, but the local Kunming Daily newspaper reported that some tourists visiting the area saw buildings shaking.

Known as bolides or fireballs, these phenomena are large and bright meteors which may also explode in the Earth's atmosphere.

Source: Online reports; Editor: Eric Wang  

Keywords:   Meteor fireball light Yunnan