The mysterious streaks of light seen in the sky over the Sacramento area on St. Patrick’s Day apparently were burning space debris, according to the Associated Press.
What streaks of light, you ask?
St. Patrick’s Day revelers posted videos on social media of the surprising streaks of light. Jaime Hernandez was behind the King Cong Brewing Company in Sacramento for a St. Patrick’s Day celebration when some people noticed the lights, the Associated Press reported. He began filming.
The brewery posted his video on Instagram with the caption: “Crazy Fireworks. This flew over the brewery tonight. What do you guys think? #UFO.”
Here’s what Jonathan McDowell, an astronomer at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, thinks: He’s 99.9% confident the streaks were burning space debris from an obsolete Japanese communications package.
He said in an AP interview that the instrument helped relay information from the International Space Station down to earth via satellite. The equipment, weighing 683 pounds, was discarded from the space station and was expected to completely burn upon reentry, the AP reported.
McDowell estimated the debris was about 40 miles high.
More than 42,000 people viewed the King Cong Brewing Company’s Instagram post.