A mysterious streak of light in the night sky baffled many Europeans on Christmas Eve, with speculation running wild as to whether it was a meteor, a comet or space junk.
Videos captured in Germany, Switzerland, France and Belgium show the blaze of light passing across the sky more slowly than a typical shooting star, and with greater brightness and detail.
The leading edge of the streak appears round and white, while the tail trailing it has an orange tone in some images.
People commenting on Twitter wondered about a range of possibilities. Some suggested it might be a comet, while others thought it could be space junk.
There was also speculation about rocketry. The last major blast-off, of a Russian Soyuz-2, was Friday, and some amateur astronomers conjectured that a spent rocket stage was plunging back toward Earth.
German and Belgian astronomical authorities differed on the cause.
A spokesperson for the German Aerospace Centre, the country’s national aerospace research institute, told a local newspaper that the celestial phenomenon was "99.9 per cent" certainly a meteor.
"Every year 200 tonnes of material falls to Earth. Sometimes it’s a big chunk," Andreas Schutz said.
The Royal Observatory of Belgium disagreed, saying Sunday in a statement on its website that the streak of light was from the atmospheric re-entry of the final stage of a Soyuz rocket.
Sand Pirates: ISIS Are America’s 21st Century Terrorist Privateers 2014 11 01 What is ISIS? If you believe govt and corporate propaganda, you still think that ISIS is a grassroots Islamic ideological movement ¨C and with no connection to intelligence agencies like America¡¯s CIA, Britain¡¯s MI6, Turkish (NATO) intelligence, Saudi intelligence, Israeli intelligence, or Pakistan¡¯s ISI.
The reality of ISIS is something altogether different¡
On closer inspection, these marauding paramilitary ISIS gangs are nothing ...
Ancient Stone Circles in Mideast Baffle Archaeologists 2014 11 01 Huge stone circles in the Middle East have been imaged from above, revealing details of structures that have been shrouded in mystery for decades.
The Big Circle called J1 is about 390 meters (1,280 feet) in diameter, with an open area created by bulldozing in its interior.
Credit: David L. Kennedy, copyright is retained by the Aerial Photographic Archive for Archaeology ...
Sweden Recognizes Palestinian State; Israel Upset 2014 10 31
Sweden on Thursday became the biggest Western European country to recognize a Palestinian state, prompting a strong protest from Israel, which swiftly withdrew its ambassador from Stockholm.
The move by Sweden’s new left-leaning government reflects growing international impatience with Israel’s nearly half-century control of the West Bank, east Jerusalem and its blockade of the Gaza Strip. It also comes during increased ...
Fed-Backed Study: How to Brainwash Public into Fearing “Climate Change” Like Ebola 2014 10 31
$84K study seeks ways to make public fear "climate change and overpopulation"
The National Science Foundation is funding a study to determine how to brainwash the public into fearing “climate change and overpopulation” as if they were Ebola.
The NSF awarded an $84,000 grant to researchers at the State University of New York at Buffalo yesterday to figure out how to make ...
Brain decoder can eavesdrop on your inner voice 2014 10 31
As you read this, your neurons are firing – that brain activity can now be decoded to reveal the silent words in your head
TALKING to yourself used to be a strictly private pastime. That’s no longer the case – researchers have eavesdropped on our internal monologue for the first time. The achievement is a step towards helping people who cannot ...