Astronomers speculated what had happened, but one of them, Jose Maria Madiedo from the University of Huelva in Spain, revealed that it was indeed a meteorite that hit the moon. Attached to his tweet was a YouTube link displaying the impact on the top-left half of the moon. Madiedo observed the meteorite flash through Spain’s Moons Impacts Detection and Analysis System (MIDAS), which is run by the University of Huelva and the Institution of Astrophysics of Andalucia. “We employ an array of telescopes endowed with high-sensitivity cameras that monitor the lunar surface in order to detect these events,” he explained. However, lunar impacts with meteorites occur all the time, probable even daily. Only the light conditions were different this time, during eclipse. T
he meteorite impact caused a bright flash. “I was really, really happy when this happened,” says Madiedo. For years, he and his colleagues have been hoping to observe a meteorite impact on the moon. „It reminds us that the solar system is still a very dynamic place,” said Robert Massey at the Royal Astronomical Society. The eclipse was streamed live online by several organizations, including the Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles and the Virtual Telescope Project.