Stargazers were treated to a mysterious sight last week, when an ethereal spiral appeared in the night sky.
A telescope located on Hawaii’s dormant volcano Mauna Kea captured the apparition, which began as a discrete point before transforming into a stunning, bright whirlpool.
The Subaru Telescope time-lapse footage was posted to YouTube on Thursday, and it’s something to behold, as you can see for yourself below.
A caption to the clip reads: “In the early morning of [January] On January 18, 2023, an unusual object appeared over Maunakea, Hawaii.”
A “mysterious” flying spiral over Maunakea 2023-01-18 UT / マウナケア上空にまた渦巻き出現！Youtube
He continues: “At first it was just a small dot in the left center of the view, then it ejected an arc-like feature.
“It got a little bit bigger… A bright spot appeared on the spot, then it turned into a spiral.”
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So what was behind the phenomenon?
None other than Elon Musk.
Well, not him specifically, but his SpaceX team.
“The spiral seems to be related to the launch of a new satellite by the SpaceX company,” officials from the National Astronomical Observatory explained in a tweet.
In fact, Musk’s company launched its Falcon 9 rocket from Cape Canaveral, Florida, on Wednesday, carrying a GPS satellite for the US Space Force.
But where did that spiral come from?
Satellite tracker Scott Tilley suggested it was caused by a Falcon 9 vent, as the rocket released fuel during its descent into the Atlantic Ocean.
This isn’t the first time a SpaceX launch has given birth to a “crazy blue spiral.”
In June last year, a New Zealand woman managed to snap a photo of a “weird but cool” swirl in the sky over her home after a Falcon 9 launch from Cape Canaveral earlier that day, while in Illinois, a man captured a “smoke ring” as the satellite entered orbit.
Who knew the head of Twitter could be behind moments of such serene beauty?
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