LAKE OF THE OZARKS, Mo. — The bright streak of a meteor reflected in the waters of Lake of the Ozarks on Monday night, but central Missouri wasn't the only place privy to the sight.
In St. Louis, a sonic boom could be heard as the meteor shot across the sky at about 8:51 p.m. And sightings were reported as far away as Minnesota and South Dakota. One local boater caught the meteor on their dock's security camera:
Here are a few interesting facts about Monday night's meteor, according to an article by Erin Heffernan, of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, who spoke with NASA about "Event: 20191112-025148."
1. It Started Behind Mars.
The 200+ pound meteor was about the size of a basketball, and broke off an asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter.
2. It Broke The Sound Barrier. By A Lot.
The meteor traveled through the sky at an estimated 33,500 mph. Since the speed of sound is about 767 mph, the meteor emitted a sonic boom. That's fast, but amazingly, mankind has launched a rocket that went even faster. The New Horizons spacecraft reached about 36,000 mph when it was launched out of Earth's orbit from Cape Canaveral in 2006, and it reportedly reached past 52,000 mph in 2016, about a year after it passed Pluto.
3. There Might Be Pieces... Somewhere In Missouri
The meteor reportedly became visible when it was about 59 miles above Cedar Hill, Mo., and broke into pieces when it had traveled about 70 miles and was then only about 12 miles above the ground. It'd be like finding a needle in a haystack, but if you're lucky enough to located a chunk of the meteor, the Maine Mineral and Gem Museum—planned to open in Bethel, Maine on Dec. 12—is offering $25,000 for a 1kg piece of it. The American Meteor Society estimates the meteor ended its flight somewhere near Wellsville, Mo.
The EarthCam in St. Louis caught a great view of the meteor:
Ready to see another meteor? Your best chance is at about 10:30 p.m. on Nov. 21, when the Alpha Monocerotids shower is expected to send plenty of flaming pebbles through the night sky.