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Thread: How large is a visible meteor?

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    How large is a visible meteor?

    As big as a pinhead? A pea? A golfball?
    How big do they have to get till you just notice them?
    SHARKS (crossed out) MONGEESE (sic) WITH FRICKIN' LASER BEAMS ATTACHED TO THEIR HEADS

  2. #2
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    I've heard that the size of a grain of sand produces the quick flashes/streaks.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
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    I think I've read about the size of a mustard seed. So maybe 1-2mm? Wikipedia says about the size of a grain of sand, so <1mm. So small indeed.

    I'm guessing the quick flashes are smaller ones, and the ones that streak across the sky are a bit bigger? My favorite are the ones that leave a sparkly trail.

  4. #4
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    Sep 2021
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    Meteoroid would have to be about the size of a marble for a portion of it to reach the Earth's surface. Smaller particles burn up in the atmosphere about 50 to 75 miles above the Earth.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Mazanec View Post
    As big as a pinhead? A pea? A golfball?
    How big do they have to get till you just notice them?
    A meteor does not have to be large in order to see it in size can range from a small stone to a grain of sand.

  6. #6
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    As a physics question, assume that the object is travelling 10 to 30 miles per second relative to the atmosphere, and that 10% to 50% of the kinetic energy it loses gets converted to visible light over the time of 1 to 5 seconds.
    If it is 50 to 150 miles away from the observer, how much mass does it need to be visible?
    Forming opinions as we speak

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