Fireballs in the Sky: Report meteors on your smartphone and join the citizens' science project

Review posted Wed 18 Dec '13
Fireballs in the Sky Fireballs in the Sky Info Visit

No, it's not the name of the next Star Wars movie nor is it the title of the next One Direction album. Fireballs In The Sky is a completely new science application developed by the prestigious Curtin University in Western Australia that allows you to contribute to meteor research no matter where you are in the world. If you look up into the sky one night and see a fireball or a meteor, you can report it to the team of scientists who will incorporate the data into their research as they hunt for space rocks. The app uses the sensors in your smartphone to record all the details of the sighting and add to Curtin's vast database of space knowledge.
Have you ever looked up into the sky one night and seen a bright fireball or meteor? Well, now you can use this app in your smartphone to automatically record the time it took place, the location, the altitude as well as the azimuth of the meteor to build an animated recreation of the fireball that you saw. Add your own details about brightness, color, speed and fragmentation and Curtin and its team of planetary scientists and engineers will gain valuable knowledge of meteor action as well as making you a part of a groundbreaking space project called the Desert Fireball Network. The DFN is a research project based on a series of cameras positioned throughout the Nullarbor Desert in Western Australia. By capturing fireballs on camera, scientists are able to calculate an orbit and a trajectory for a meteorite and can work out where in the solar system it came from and where it may have landed. The app also allows the user to keep up with the progress of the DFN research - with everything from field trip blogs and photos, stunning images from the desert cameras and news and astronomical events available at your fingertips. It gives you the chance to be involved in a major scientific project and, the more contributors they have, the more information they can gather and the bigger the network will grow!
It makes a nice change to review an app with as much scientific clout as this one does. Rather than copious amounts of business or photo apps we have here something completely different - a science app that will actually have some impact. This smartphone app sends back information about meteor sightings and tells us what created it, where it came from and where it might have landed.  It can be used to track fireballs from all over the world and all you really have to do is to click where in the sky you think it's path began and click it again to where it might have landed. With enough confirmations, the team can work out where it came from and send back the information to you. Fireballs In The Sky is a citizens’ science project that allows the public to collaborate and get involved.

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