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What would a shooting star look like if it was coming straight towards you? © Getty Images

What would a shooting star look like if it was coming straight towards you?

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Asked by: Steve Welch, via email

A shooting star, or ‘meteor’, is caused by a tiny piece of rock or dust burning up in the Earth’s atmosphere. If one was coming straight at you, it would appear as a brief flash of light at a single point in the sky – rather than the usual streak of light we associate with shooting stars. This brief flash would be difficult to spot with the unaided eye, but they can be seen in long-exposure photographs of meteor showers.

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