Sudan, Africa (IPP) - A bright fireball appeared over Africa just as predicted at 10:46 EDT or 0246 UT. The asteroid is designated as 2008 TC3 or 8TA9D69 by the International Astronomical Union (IAU).
Dr. Povenmire Finootch, President for life of the IAU, issued an astronomical telegram which briefly described the asteroid as seen from the window of the Gulfstream VII aircraft which was flown into position to observe and photograph the flaming asteroid as it entered the Earth's atmosphere.
There was a feeling of euphoria and conviviality shared by those who were on board the plane in what is being described as a historic first for the IAU in that no meteor or asteroid has ever been successfully rendezvoused with ever before.
The plane that the IAU scientists and technicians are using flies itself from take off to landing. This allows the personnel on board to drink champagne and smoke cigars if they wish. The scientific data is gathered by robotic means and analyzed later. The plane is outfitted with auxiliary fuel tanks which allow it to remain aloft for an extended period of time.
Communication with the plane indicates that those on board are indeed very intoxicated from 18 hours of drinking and partying and the scientists who were sober enough to talk to ground crews promised to share all of the data and photographs gathered by the plane's instruments with the world tomorrow morning.