|Occurred : 8/19/2011 21:59 (Entered as : 081911 21:59)
Reported: 8/19/2011 9:59:07 PM 21:59
Location: Merritt Island, FL
|Fireball over Merritt Island - leveled off and headed north toward space center
I saw an orange fireball through a skylight and alerted everyone to it's presence. We all raced outside in time to see it make a coarse correction and to see the flame dissipate.
At first it appeared to be falling straight towards us however at some point it leveled off and flew in a north, north east direction straight toward Kennedy Space Center from our point of view.
While it was falling the flame appeared quite large, after it leveled off the flame was mostly out however it did NOT lose speed or altitude during it's flight. It's as if the flame was turned off but we could still see the afterglow until it got to far away.
None of us saw a craft of any type. The flame was too bright to see anything around it however there were 2 distinct intensities of luminescence. The center portion was a yellow(er), more intense light than the outside area. The outside light while still very bright was almost translucent. Both lights dimmed at approximately the same rate.
It moved completely across the sky in less than 30 seconds however there is no telling how long it was falling as I only saw it when it came into view. I estimate it was traveling faster than a small plane, even as quick as a jet.
One person described it as a rocket but I don't think that was likely considering it was descending and made no audible noise though the wind notoriously blows south west here so that isn't surprising.