Spirals Of Blue Light Appear In New Zealand Sky, Experts Point To SpaceX Launch

A New Zealand resident spotted a "bizarre but very cool" blue spiral above her house following a SpaceX launch on June 19

Clare Rehill photographed the spiral in the sky above Queenstown, a town on New Zealand's South Island.

She posted(opens in new tab) the photo on Twitter⁠ early in the morning her time on Monday (June 20), speculating that "it's got something to do with SpaceX."

The sky show came courtesy of a two-stage SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, which launched from Florida's Cape Canaveral Space Force Station on Sunday at 12:27 a.m. EDT (0427 GMT)

Prof Richard Easther, a physicist at Auckland University, explained the reason behind the phenomenon. Clouds of that nature sometimes occurred when a rocket carried a satellite into orbit, he told

'When the propellant is ejected out the back, you have what's essentially water and carbon dioxide - that briefly forms a cloud in space that's illuminated by the sun', Professor Easther

The New Plymouth Astronomical Society said on Facebook that it was "most likely a "fuel dump" or "exhaust plume" from a SpaceX rocket launch", as similar effects have been seen before.


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