The coolest new space pictures: February 2023
February’s featured space image is a small asteroid burning up in Earth’s atmosphere. Our planet is constantly bombarded by space rocks, but this meter-wide object was notable for being discovered six hours prior to atmospheric entry, with a prediction that it would burn up near the English Channel. That information gave Gijs de Reijke, a landscape photographer and geography teacher from the Netherlands, enough time to get in position for this spectacular shot:
We asked Gijs to tell us a little more about his photo. He wrote:
“Over the years I've captured quite a few meteor showers, and I've seen my share of fireballs during and outside of those showers. Until fairly recently it was nigh impossible to predict the specific time and place where asteroids would crash into the Earth's atmosphere.
The seventh time someone did, in this case the Hungarian astronomer Krisztián Sárneczky, a meter-sized rock would fall close enough to where I live that I could actually see and capture it on camera, if I drove out from under the clouds. That is what I did, and I knew of a photogenic bit of landscape to frame the event, about twenty minutes from home. There are never any guarantees in nature photography, but luck can be forced by knowing how to find and interpret information regarding interesting events.”
Here are some other pictures that caught our attention this February: