Footage of this incredible bubble-like burst of light in the night sky was captured by cameras at an astronomical observatory in Hawaii.
Sky watchers have been flooding internet forums with speculation about the burst, filmed by a webcam mounted on the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope on Mauna Kea.
Captured in time-lapse footage, the glowing sphere takes several minutes to expand until it virtually fills the frame – then it vanishes as mysteriously as it appeared.
On the early morning of 22 March, Subaru Telescope observers on the summit of Mauna Kea, noticed that there is a huge halo of light above the eastern horizon. It was slowly expanding to over 45 degrees in 5 minutes or more.
The event was captured by the Subaru Catwalk Night Camera and also by CHFT’s NNW webcam.
Theories as the cause of the mysterious luminous sphere have ranged from the opening of an inter-dimensional portal to the future to a battle between two alien starships.
The most likely explanation is that it is a U.S. Minuteman III inter-continental ballistic missile (ICBM), ejecting fuel as it enters the upper reaches of the Earth’s atmosphere.
Astronomy forums, Bad Astronomy reveals that a Minuteman III ICBM had been scheduled to launch from Vandenburg Air Force Base, California, three minutes before the burst was observed, at about 3:35am Hawaii time.
Some people are questioning this explanation by saying that recently there have been an enormous number of so-called ‘missile phenomena’ which have never appeared before.