Yekaterinburg Fireball: What Lit the Night Sky of the city of Russia into Day that Shocked Scientist
In the 21st Century, we have witnessed considerable developments in the area of science and technology. New discoveries seem to take place almost every day. However, not all of those discoveries have a valid explanation.
Some discoveries have led to an incredible scientific breakthrough, while others continue to baffle experts with their existence. In the city of Yekaterinburg, an unexplainable explosion was spotted which stumped the majority of its citizens.
Fireball Appearance in Russia:
On 14th November 2014, a strange flash lit up the skies of Yekaterinburg, the fourth largest city in Russia. Images were captured by a dashcam on the road, which showed a bright orange-red light with white in the middle, lighting up the whole sky.
The flash occurred at 17:39 local time. However, the dashcam recorded the images at 18:39 local time. The mysterious flash continued to linger for 11 seconds, after which it suddenly disappeared and engulfed the skies in darkness. Though the strange flash occurred on the 14th of November, the images were released on the 18th of November. Strangely, no sound was heard during the time of its occurrence. Several witnesses claimed that the flash had turned the night into a dazzling day for a few moments before disappearing into oblivion. Even a driver who had managed to capture small footage of the flash, issued a plea on the internet regarding the peculiar phenomena, since he found no media coverage of its occurrence. The mysterious flash was also filmed by a few teenagers from Yekaterinburg. Yet, there was no reasonable explanation for this unusual flash.
Several theories were proposed that included a missile launch or an unidentified object from space. Some Scientists presumed that the mysterious flash was a fireball that was created when an asteroid collided with the Earth's atmosphere. However, these theories were dismissed due to the lack of evidence. Viktor Grokhovsky, the member of the Meteorites Committee of the Russian Academy of Sciences, believed that the flash resembled a falling bolide.
Due to low cloud cover, it ceased to exist above the clouds, and hence it lit up the whole sky. Contrary to this theory, another astronomer, Vadim Krushinsky doubted the validity of Grochowsky's claims.
He supported his statement by stating that the color of the flash failed to support the Asteroid speculation. He further explained that the shade of light was dependent on the body temperature, the flash was not a bolide since bolides are usually whiter. The strange flash was orange-red, proving Krushinsky's explanation correct. On the other hand, the Emergency officials suspected the military. They suggested that the military might have scheduled an explosive ordnance disposal procedure. The City Administration also supported the possibility of these claims, but the military denied their involvement.
They stated that no exercise nor training session was scheduled on that date, and no military unit was based in that region. Space Officials were also suspected since they were a series of launches that take from Plesetsk Cosmodrome, which was located in the same area where the strange flash was spotted. However, according to the Space Agency's website, the latest launch from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome took place on October 29 while the next one was planned for November 24. Despite their valid reasons, authorities continued to suspect their involvement. Fortunately, the Regional emergency services announced that there were no casualties in connection with the mysterious flash. But what was peculiar about the flash was that it had no shape nor a pattern. Witnesses also reported that they do not recall hearing any kind of sound from the mysterious flash.
According to regional television, neither meteorologists nor scientists were able to explain the strange phenomenon. A local observatory indicated that nothing fell from the sky on the day of the flash. However, local officials from the Emergency Ministry refused to comment on this incident.
A week after the incident, new footage emerged of unexplained explosives above Siberia. Suspicion again fell on the military for these incidents. It was suspected that the military was burning unused gunpowder that may explain the mysterious flash that occurred on the 14th of November.
When more and more flashes were noticed, attention was focused on an old chemical plant that processes explosives next door to the military unit. This suggested that explosions were being caused by the recycling of unused military gunpowder. One woman from the military, who did not wish to be named, explained that it was a common practice for the military to burn the unused military gunpowder since it was rendered useless beyond its expiration date.
Judging from the various footages, it was confirmed that the flashes were indeed explosions. Officials at the Emergency Ministry insisted that the mysterious flashes are of no danger to anyone if the explosions were caused by burning gunpowder. What began as a mysterious phenomenon, concluded as a simple explosion. Though the reason behind the strange fireball was finally uncovered, the witnesses could not deny the fear they felt on witnessing such an odd event. It seems some mysteries do not remain a mystery for a longer time.
Read more such interestingly mysterious incidents in The Socians.