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The Philadelphia oil refinery explosion was so big, it could be seen from space

If you were on social media this morning, you likely saw many of the jaw-dropping video clips of an explosion at a South Philadelphia oil refinery.

The Philadelphia oil refinery explosion was so big, it could be seen from space
[Photo: Matt Rourke/AP/Shutterstock]
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If you were on social media this morning, you likely saw many of the jaw-dropping video clips of an explosion at a South Philadelphia oil refinery. According to fire officials cited by CNN, the fire and resulting explosion at Philadelphia Energy Solutions came from a vat of butane.

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The explosion could reportedly be felt for miles, and videos of the incident were nothing short of apocalyptic, particularly those shot at close range in which the explosion resembles some kind of hellish mushroom cloud.

It turns out, you did not need to be at close range to see the big bang, though. The explosion was so large it was visible from space, captured on satellite images shared by a number of news outlets today. Check out the clips ahead—and look closely for the blip.

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About the author

Christopher Zara is a senior staff news editor for Fast Company and obsessed with media, technology, business, culture, and theater. Before coming to FastCo News, he was a deputy editor at International Business Times, a theater critic for Newsweek, and managing editor of Show Business magazine

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