Shoot­ing star steals show off crick­eters

Sunday Star-Times - - Front Page -

A dra­matic at­mo­spheric light show, be­lieved to be a me­teor shower or space junk, il­lu­mi­nated the sky above the North Is­land last night.

The shoot­ing star was first seen shortly af­ter 8.58pm, and was vis­i­ble for sev­eral min­utes.

Wit­nesses from as far as Taupo and Auck­land de­scribed a bright light that ap­peared to fall out of the sky, fol­lowed by a ‘‘boom’’ sound.

It was seen as far south as Taupo, with re­ports com­ing in from Waikato and Auck­land.

A MetSer­vice spokesper­son said the ob­ject was prob­a­bly a me­teor, but Auck­land Uni­ver­sity physics pro­fes­sor and cos­mol­ogy ex­pert Richard Eas­ther tweeted that it may in­stead have been ‘‘space junk’’ – de­bris from man­made ob­jects in space, such as old satellites.

Abi­gail Dougherty was in Whir­i­toa with her fam­ily and saw the ob­ject fly­ing over her head. ‘‘It was re­ally quiet but sparkly and moved in an arch form.’’

At the Black Caps-Sri Lanka cricket one-dayer in Mt Maun­ganui, the cam­era op­er­a­tors turned their lens to the sky as the bat­ting hero­ics be­low were for­got­ten.

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