Meteorite impact near Viñales in Western Cuba

Filter by


EUMETSAT Users Twitter

RSS Feed

RSS Icon Image Library

On 1 February 2019 a meteorite exploded over Western Cuba near Viñales in bright daylight, as seen in GOES imagery.

Date & Time
1 February 2019 18:02–19:32 UTC
Volcanic Ash RGB

By HansPeter Rosesli (Swizterland)

Using GOES-16 Volcanic Ash RGB imagery it was possible to track the speed of the debris before it made impact in western Cuba. Figure 1 shows that the meteorite debris travelled in the atmosphere at a speed of ~45 km/h.

Figure 1
Figure 1: GOES-16 Volcanic Ash RGB, 1 Feb, 18:17 and 19:17 UTC

The impact site can be seen in the GOES-16 Volcanic Ash imagery, 1 Feb 18:17 UTC (Figure 2).

Figure 2
Figure 2: GOES-16 Volcanic Ash RGB, 1 Feb, 18:17 UTC

Meteorites can be composed of a number of materials and using the GOES-16 Volcanic Ash RGBs it is possible to see if this meteorite contained any sulphur-related materials. Sulphur shows up as bright green in the Volcanic Ash RGB and on this animation of the RGBs, in five minute intervals between 18:02 UTC and 19:32 UTC (Figure 3), there was no significant SO2 signal visible, so, most probably, the meteorite did not contain significant amounts of sulphur-rich material.

Figure 3: GOES-16 Volcanic Ash RGB animation, 1 Feb 18:02 UTC–19:32 UTC
By continuing to use this website, you are giving consent for EUMETSAT to store certain information about you. To learn more about what information EUMETSAT collects and how it is used, please view our Terms of Use page.