fireball

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fireball,

very bright meteormeteor,
appearance of a small particle flying through space that interacts with the earth's upper atmosphere. While still outside the atmosphere, the particle is known as a meteoroid. Countless meteoroids of varying sizes are moving about the solar system at any time.
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 leaving a trail in the sky that can remain visible for several minutes; often a distinct sound, perhaps caused by very low frequency radio waves, is associated with it. A bolide (bō`līd) is a fireball that explodes in the air because of thermal stresses created when it passes through the earth's atmosphere.

fireball

A bright visual meteor of magnitude greater than –10. About 50 000 to 100 000 occur in the Earth's atmosphere each year.

fireball

[′fīr‚bȯl]
(astronomy)
A bright meteor with luminosity equal to or exceeding that of the brightest planets.
(nucleonics)
The luminous sphere of hot gases that forms a few millionths of a second after a nuclear explosion.

fireball

1. a ball-shaped discharge of lightning
2. the bright spherical region of hot ionized gas at the centre of a nuclear explosion
3. Astronomy another name for bolide