Yeoman stressed that the bolide event was likely not associated at all with the incoming asteroid 2012 DA14, which will fly within 17,200 miles (27,000 kilometers) of Earth when it passes safely by our planet today.
"The asteroid will travel south to north," Yeomans said. "The bolide trail was not south to north and the separation in time between the fireball and 2012 DA14 close approach is significant."
Asteroid 2012 DA14 is 150 feet (45 meters) wide -- about half the size of a football field -- and will make its closest approach to Earth at 2:24 p.m. EST (1924 GMT) when it passes over Indonesia. It will be about 5,000 miles (8,046 kilometers) closer to Earth than the communications satellites circling the planet in geosynchronous orbits.
NASA scientists and professional and amateur astronomers around the world have been tracking asteroid 2012 DA14 since it was first discovered by a team of amateurs in February 2012. Not only does the asteroid pose no threat to Earth during today's flyby, but it will not hit Earth for the foreseeable future, NASA scientists have said.