Reports Report 1077q (Event 1077-2018)

This report has been linked to the following event: Event 1077-2018
Observer
NameFrederick V
Experience Level4/5
RemarksI am a Navy pilot. I was flying my aircraft to a high overhead position of Runway 35 at Valley International Airport. I was climbing at an attitude of approximately 15 degrees nose high, for training. Approaching 2,500 feet, I began to notice my cockpit lighting up. It felt like a spot light shining on me. I looked up expecting to see a potential traffic conflict, but saw the largest fireball I’ve ever seen. I routinely watch the sky for astronomical events. I’ve never seen anything like this. This event lit up cockpits of my fellow pilots over 90 miles away in Corpus Christi. One other person I know saw it, two others only saw the light of it inside their cockpits, but did not see the meteor. I reported the event to Valley tower, they saw the light, but did not see the meteor. It lit up the ground as if it were daylight. It was very intense. (I edited the time after consulting with tower personnel at Valley International. I reported the event at exactly 01:31:28 UTC. I reported it to tower immediately upon witnessing the event. It can be definitively established when this event occurred.)
Location
AddressHarlingen, TX
Latitude26° 12' 32.8'' N (26.21°)
Longitude 97° 39' 0.97'' W (-97.65°)
Elevation10.4m
Time and Duration
Local Date & Time2018-03-19 20:31 CDT
UT Date & Time2018-03-20 01:31 UT
Duration≈3.5s
Direction
Moving directionFrom up right to down left
Descent Angle201°
Moving
Facing azimuth360°
First azimuth15°
First elevation90°
Last azimuth345°
Last elevation60°
Brightness and color
Stellar Magnitude-28
ColorWhite
Concurrent Sound
ObservationNo
Remarks-
Delayed Sound
ObservationNo
Remarks-
Persistent train
ObservationNo
Duration-
Length-
Remarks-
Terminal flash
ObservationYes
RemarksThe fireball exploded into dozens of smaller pieces
Fragmentation
ObservationYes
RemarksIt looked like a firework. Dozens of pieces blew up and continued in the general direction of the fireball.