High Strangeness: Deep Space UFO

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Deep Space UFO

I was having a nice time tonight with my wonderful Orion XT8 telescope, getting some great views of objects in the northern sky:
  • Saturn (w/rings and moons)
  • Castor & Pollux (binary stars!)
  • Capella
  • Procyon
  • The Moon
  • Alkaid
  • A UFO
Wait. What? A UFO??

Damned if it ain't so. I was straining to get a good look at Alkaid, a star in the Big Dipper, because it was nearly at the zenith, and it's tricky to aim a big, bulky telescope at something almost directly overhead. But as I found it in the eyepiece and started to focus, a bright white light zipped across the field of view in a curved path and disappeared.

I'm a Gemini and these are my boys: Castor & Pollux.
What a bonus! As if it isn't exhilarating enough to be able to see the flipping rings of Saturn from my back yard, now I've got UFOs overhead!

It couldn't have been visible for more than a half-second, but there it was... It was in focus, so it wasn't a bug flying past the telescope's aperture. It wasn't a meteor, because its path curved. My impression in the brief moment I saw it was that it was a brilliantly-lit object zipping around in deep space: a UFO.

Me and my telescope saw something weird tonight that we can't explain. Damn, that's cool.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

"It wasn't a meteor, because its path curved"

Meteor paths curve all the time, inside the atmosphere and in space.

Mark OC said...

Point taken. They do curve, subject to the gravitation pull of the bodies in their vicinity... But the curve I saw was very tight and the object left no trail.
Thanks for the comment!