Astromaterials Research & Exploration Science
METEORITE FALLS

ADDISON, ALABAMA

ADDISON, ALABAMA

ADDISON, ALABAMA

DATE/TIME

10/30/2012 @ 22:35:59 UTC

10/30/2012
22:35:59 UTC

LAT/LONG

34.33625 • -87.189535

34.33625
-87.189535

This is an estimated landing site map for this fall, color coded according to mass. Red is kg-mass meteorites, scaling down to yellow single-gram stones.

STREWN FIELD

This is an estimated landing site map for this fall, color coded according to mass. Red is kg-mass meteorites, scaling down to yellow single-gram stones.

SUMMARY

This meteorite fall was an early evening fireball that occurred at 5:35 PM local time on the 30th of October 2012, or 22:35:59 on 30 Oct 2012 UTC. The fireball was seen northwest of Birmingham, Alabama and fifty-six eyewitnesses reported it to the American Meteor Society across Alabama and all surrounding states. Twelve eyewitnesses near reported hearing sonic booms and/or concurrent noise from the falling meteorites.

Meteorites have been recovered from this event, but classification by the Meteoritical Society is currently pending.  For this reason the name “Addison” is used as a provisional name in this report as it is one of the closest named localities to the meteorite find location.  Most meteorites from this event fell within the Bankhead National Forest.

This event is recorded as American Meteor Society event number 1681 for 2012. Signatures of falling meteorites can be found in imagery from four nearby weather radars. In the NEXRAD weather radar network operated by NOAA, the KOHX (Nashville, TN), KBMX (Birmingham, AL), KFFC (Atlanta, GA), and KHTX (Huntsville, AL) radars record signatures of falling meteorites.

The first appearance of falling meteorites on radar occurs at 22:36:56 UTC and 16,190  m above sea level (ASL) in the 2234 UTC data set for the KOHX radar in the 3.4 degree elevation radar sweep. Signatures consistent with falling meteorites appear in a total of six radar sweeps from the four radars, with a final signature appearing at 22:42:32 UTC.

Calculations of mass and total number of meteorites based on weather radar data indicate that this meteorite fall is approximately 31 to 37x the total mass of the Park Forest, IL meteorite fall in 2003. This value comes with a caveat, however, in that the fragmentation behavior of this fall is skewed more strongly towards the survival of small meteorites than any meteorite fall observed in NEXRAD data to date. The Addison fall fragmented extensively, producing copious small meteorites but probably very few larger stones. The largest meteorites seen in NEXRAD data have an estimated mass of only 2.69g, which is smaller than for most meteorite falls.  

The meteorite type is awaiting classification of one of the recovered meteorites.

LEARN MORE

RADAR & MAPS

This composite image shows all the radar signatures from falling meteorites as blue/gray polygons. The Addison meteorite fall is awaiting classification and so the name is provisional.

RADAR SUMMARY

This composite image shows all the radar signatures from falling meteorites as blue/gray polygons. The Addison meteorite fall is awaiting classification and so the name is provisional.

GET DIRECTIONS

Click on the View larger map link that is displayed in the address box above in order to get directions to the strewn field area.

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METEORITES 101

This step-by-step guide will show you how to locate possible meteorite fall sites using radar software and weather data along with info provided by reporting agencies and monitoring systems.
These instructions will show you how to best preserve the meteorites you discover and how to make contact with the organizations that are willing to accept and analyze your find.
Don't know exactly what a meteorite is, what they are made of or where they come from? If that's the case, we have provided a mini-"crash" course in what you need to know about them.
It turns out that meteorites have provided us a lot of scientific insight, not only into the origins of our solar system and planet Earth, but what the future might hold for mankind.
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