'Huge fireball' spotted in NI night sky was like something from the film 'Armageddon'

Northern Ireland stargazers were treated to a spectacular display of what has been described by several eye witnesses as a "huge fireball" in the night sky on Wednesday evening.

Thursday, 27th May 2021, 7:15 pm
Updated Thursday, 27th May 2021, 7:16 pm

A meteorite, which experts believe first became visible over Scotland, was spotted shooting across the Northern Ireland night time sky shortly before 11:00pm.

The dazzling display was seen in every county in Northern Ireland as well as Co. Donegal where it is believed to have split into three pieces before coming down just off the northern most tip of the Inishowen peninsula.

"I was outside looking at the moon when this huge fireball caught my eye - it was like something from that film Armageddon," said Tom McChrystal from Omagh, Co. Tyrone.

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A screengrab taken from the video provided courtesy of Eileen McLaughlin who caught the meteorite while on Shroove Beach, Inishowen, Co. Donegal..

"It was one of things where you just to be in the right place at the right time to see it," explained Mary Hughes from Armagh.

The International Meteor Organisation (IMO) said: “Fireballs are meteors that appear brighter than normal.

“Due to the velocity at which they strike the Earth’s atmosphere, fragments larger than one millimetre have the capability to produce a bright flash as they streak through the heavens above.

“These bright meteors are what we call fireballs and they often strike fear and awe for those who witness them.”