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Fireball streaking over Florida was a large meteor, experts say

The meteor exploded over the ocean with a force equal to 100 tons of TNT.
Credit: AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee
In this 10-second exposure a meteor streaks across the sky near palm trees, early Monday during the Perseid meteor shower, Aug. 13, 2018, in Bal Harbour, Fla. The meteors are pieces of debris from the comet Swift-Tuttle.

MELBOURNE, Fla. — Experts say a fireball streaking across the night sky over central Florida this week was a large meteor.

Spalding Allsky Camera Network Director Dwayne Free says the meteor was up to a foot wide and exploded over the Atlantic Ocean with a force equal to 100 tons of TNT.

Florida Today reports the fireball was seen around 2 a.m. Tuesday along Florida's Space Coast from Titusville to Palm Bay.

The bright, greenish light was recorded by surveillance cameras and a camera feeding data to the Spalding Allsky Camera Network.

The private network provides data to NASA's Planetary Defense Office's Asteroid Threat Assessment Project in California.

The meteor also was confirmed by the Air Force's 45th Weather Squadron, which specializes in weather assessments for the Kennedy Space Center.

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