Environment

Sonic boom heard and felt across North Alabama


A sonic boom was heard and felt across North Alabama shortly after 13:40 CST (19:40 UTC) on November 14, 2017. At this time, there is still no official explanation.

Numerous Alabamians, primarily from Blount, Jefferson, Walker, Cullman, Talladega, Calhoun, Clay, Winston, Randolph, Tuscaloosa, and St. Clair counties took to Twitter to report the event shook their homes. There are also reports of the sound being heard in Columbus, Mississippi.

ABC 33/40’s chief meteorologist James Span said the sound does not appear to be related to a geological event but at this time there is still no official explanation.

The National Weather Service in Birmingham has not confirmed the source of the sound but believes it originated from an aircraft breaking the sound barrier or a meteorite from the Leonid shower.

A sonic boom is the sound associated with the shock waves created by an object traveling through the air faster than the speed of sound. Sonic booms generate significant amounts of sound energy, sounding much like an explosion to the human ear.

Supersonic flight and sonic booms

Chelyabinsk meteorite sonic booms

Featured image: Sonic boom reports in North Alabama on November 14, 2017. Credit: Google. Edit: TW





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