Great ball of fire

FRAGMENT: The spectacle was produced by a comet shard.

A SPECTACULAR fireball, as bright as the moon, flashed across southern Spanish skies in the early hours of Tuesday, August 31.

The blazing pulse of light proceeded rapidly in a northwards direction, eventually fizzling out around 38 kilometres above Malaga province.

Caused by the rapid disintegration of a comet fragment as it entered the earth’s atmosphere, the incandescent phenomenon is not uncommon at this time of year.

Entering from the heavens at a speed of around 130,000 kilometres per hour, the meteor fell sixty kilometres before burning up entirely, and was visible throughout Malaga’s coastline.

The event was captured on video by observatories operating in Almeria, Granada, Huelva and Sevilla, and prompted a number of concerned citizens to take to social media, with some mistakenly believing the planet to be under attack.

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