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A meteor is the visible path of a meteoroid that enters the Earth's (or another body's) atmosphere, commonly called a shooting star. The visibility is due to the heat produced by the atmospheric entry. A very bright meteor, brighter than the apparent magnitude of Venus, may be called a fireball or bolide.

If a meteoroid survives its transit of the atmosphere to come to rest on the surface, the resulting object is called a meteorite. A meteor striking the Earth or other object may produce an impact crater.

A tektite

A tektite

Molten terrestrial material 'splashed' from such a crater can cool and solidify into an object known as a tektite

See also

Crater, Meteor shower,meteoroid, meteorite, tektite, Meteor (rocket)


Last updated: 02-05-2005 22:42:52
Last updated: 02-19-2005 10:32:10