Bright lights without a bang: Flash of light over Kiev causes wild speculation


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Bright glow without a bang
Flash of light over Kiev causes wild speculation

A bright flash of light fell over Kiev last night. The authorities speak of a US satellite as the cause. But NASA denies it. There is wild speculation about the event on social media.

A flash of light across the sky has caused confusion in the Ukrainian capital of Kiev. Around 10:00 p.m. local time (9:00 p.m. CEST) on Wednesday, “the glow of a flying object was observed in the sky over Kiev,” said the head of the Kiev military administration, Serhiy Popko, in the online service Telegram. An AFP journalist observed a flash in the sky, which was not followed by thunder or any other sound. Popko said the crash of a NASA satellite was responsible for “initial information.” However, NASA itself rejected this shortly thereafter.

NASA announced earlier this week that the Rhessi satellite, weighing around 300 kilograms, was scheduled to enter the earth’s atmosphere. However, the US space agency said in a statement released during the night that this had not yet happened at the time the flash was observed.

The crash of the satellite was not planned until around 2:50 a.m. on Thursday, and no other satellite entered the atmosphere on Wednesday. According to NASA, Rhessi was used to observe solar flares and was launched in 2002. The satellite was decommissioned in 2018.

The Ukrainian Air Force had said in connection with the flash of light that it had to do with the crash of a “satellite” or “meteorite”. According to Popko, head of the military administration, anti-aircraft defenses were activated in Kiev, but without firing. Nevertheless, there was wild speculation on the social networks about the cause of the flash of light. A popular theory was that it was caused by aliens.

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