Reports Report 2717a (Event 2717-2017)

Name Athena H
Experience Level 2/5
Remarks Pleased to have witnessed this; quite stunning. Hope this helps.
Address Lancaster, CA
Latitude 34° 41' 35.99'' N (34.69333°)
Longitude 118° 10' 22.19'' W (-118.17283°)
Elevation 711.307m
Time and Duration
Local Date & Time 2017-08-12 23:50 PDT
UT Date & Time 2017-08-13 06:50 UT
Duration ≈3.5s
Moving direction From up left to down right
Descent Angle 124°
Facing azimuth -
First azimuth 356.17°
First elevation 48°
Last azimuth 2.31°
Last elevation 27°
Brightness and color
Stellar Magnitude -21
Color Yellow, Light Yellow, White
Concurrent Sound
Observation No
Remarks -
Delayed Sound
Observation No
Remarks -
Persistent train
Observation Yes
Duration 2s
Remarks These 2 questions are a little more difficult to answer, especially the 2nd....not sure I understand the "degree" vs. time... ("a fist held at arm's length) there was a train from the start, before it burst/exploded into a bright ball. Hm. Also there was an arch. I've been looking for a place to explain it as I saw it...maybe doing this will help. ** Just arrived at my car in Walmart parking lot (have receipt and date/time stamp). Finishing at check out, receipt was stamped with "23:46" (11:46 pm)...I added a few minutes for the bagging and arriving at car. Facing North. It "arched." Not straight up or straight down. Started from the left and went up a little, arched and then headed down. I remember thinking it was traveling the curvature of the earth?! Since at first I thought it was a shooting star, but took particular note that it seemed to be coming from a further distance as it arched up and (seemingly) came in it began to fall. I've been fortunate to see a number of "shooting starts" usually at the point where it seems to be "falling" in a slight arch. But this seemed to go up, then arch, and then start to fall. Duration from start to finish (after exploding) could have actually been 4-5 seconds. There was that tail all along (as with shooting stars). I remember, clearly, deducing (not well-versed on this science of all this), that it had just entered the earth's atmosphere...because it suddenly burst into a ball (with a flash) (like an explosion)..pulsating brightness. I think it was yellow (yellow-ish) first, later mixed with a lot of white. It continued to travel long enough (with the tail)...maybe another second... for me to have the thought that perhaps it was some aircraft as Edwards Air Force base is relatively near by. (Have been fortunate to see a number of shooting stars, but never saw one explode). As this initial explosion continued...milliseconds between, it then appeared to (morph) into another degree of explosion but more "white" and throwing stuff away from it ("fragmentation?") more (the residual debris??) and flash, radiating out, with greater intensity...before it disappeared. So it seemed to always have the tail (or trail?) -- continuing through the explosion...went it then dissipated. Pretty sure it started with the yellow color fist at initial explosion, adding lots of white after and not the other way around. (Please note, in re-reading, by wording it as 1st and 2nd explosion...not accurately worded... better to describe it as phase 1 and phase 1. (I'm trying; tired and it's late here.) I did definitely take notice as it happened, the change of color (rather surprised at the yellow) -- So my shooting star turned into a shooting fire ball (with trail) and before milliseconds to 1 second, it had its second-phase explosion. Then, disintegrating. ----- I hope this helped. As I recall considering that it may have been an aircraft, once it disintegrated and then disappeared f
Terminal flash
Observation Yes
Remarks See above.
Observation Yes
Remarks Well, it was like the 2nd phase of the explosion. Reminded me a little of the way a child would draw a sun...with the pointy tip flares and not just a round ball. I guess, in other words, it seemed to be an even-distribution around the circumference of the a flash, shooting away I did notice...with particulates, also like tiny specs (debris?). And then poof, it was all gone.