Shedding Some Light on the Houston UFO Sighting

Houston UFO

The big UFO news over the past few days has been a supposed mass sighting of unidentified object hovering over Houston Texas, with the image above being one of the most publicized photos of a few doing the rounds. A search of Twitter shows that over the past day or two this has become a hugely popular story, probably on account of the Daily Mail story linked above.

Could a UFO have visited Texas this week?

Several people have taken it to Twitter to post pictures showing a strange object floating through the Houston clouds during a storm last Monday.

Some of the pictures show a bright oval object hovering. An unrelated picture shows a similar object through clouds. There are others, some showing what appears to be lights underneath the 'thing.'

Here's a local news report from immediately after the 'sighting' (August 12):

My thoughts: originally on seeing the most popular photos, I wondered why some of the photos show a very stormy night, while others show what appears to be a very clear night. After that, I dug into Twitter a bit to try and find the origins of the most popular photos - and, rather than finding "several people", the two most popular seem to have originated with the same person, one Nathaniel Xavier (@djnayyz) - photo 1, and photo 2. (Note: in a later tweet @djnayyz then said "I never took that picture I just posted it", though he has not yet answered commenters asking about the actual origin. He also seems happy to take the national media attention that's come along with his 'reposts').

A couple of days later Xavier then posted a video of the UFO to Instagram:

Is that ball lightning? Or is it just an old favourite CG 'UFO' video effect?

Returning to the photos however, there seems to be a fairly simple explanation: the 'UFO' is just the reflection of a highway light pole in the car window (a common source for UFO misidentification). See the image below for comparison, and note the number of lights on the UFO:


This would neatly explain how the centre of the UFO seems to be 'transparent' - only the lights are showing up in the reflection. Look again at the image at the top of this post, considering whether it might be a reflection of a light on the window...

A guess for how things played out: 'UFO' noticed while driving in car, image posted to social media, gains momentum, post another photo, gets on local TV, friend creates a nice CG UFO video, post to social media, international media attention. Purely a guess though, so I welcome your thoughts.

(thanks for the heads-up Kat)

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red pill junkie's picture
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12 April 2007
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12 lights in the 1st 'UFO' photograph. 12 lamps in the highway light pole.

The seconds image: Probably the reflection of the car's dashboard.

This other video, though, seems more interesting:

See video

[Via Open Minds]

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It's all the rabbit SH*T you stumble over on your way down!!!

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SiriusBorst's picture
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Long time Houstonian, when we saw the main photo in question my wife and I both immediately thought of the highway lights here. Unfortunately, I feel I can also clearly see the evidence of poor photoshop editing in the picture as well (big line in the sky dropping down from the light circle, unlikely distortion).

Funny part is, when this happened.. we were in Marfa at the lights viewing platform!

Greg's picture
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SiriusBorst wrote:

Long time Houstonian, when we saw the main photo in question my wife and I both immediately thought of the highway lights here. Unfortunately, I feel I can also clearly see the evidence of poor photoshop editing in the picture as well (big line in the sky dropping down from the light circle, unlikely distortion).

Funny part is, when this happened.. we were in Marfa at the lights viewing platform!

Thanks for passing on your local knowledge! And had a laugh at your Marfa note (not at you, just the way things seems to work out like that).

Kind regards,
Greg
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SiriusBorst's picture
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Greg wrote:

Thanks for passing on your local knowledge! And had a laugh at your Marfa note (not at you, just the way things seems to work out like that).

Agreed! Go figure we'd drive across the state to Marfa at the same time as the supermoon, whose light pollution killed all our stargazing/UFO hunting! Not to mention, missing all of this and learning of it through the Grail a week later..

In regard to the changing weather in the photos.. as the later poster notes.. that could just be Houston. Our weather is often all over the place and lately we have had a lot of fast moving storms and heat lightning in the evenings--if an object held position for even a short period of time, the background could have quickly shifted. The sheer size of this city should also be noted, lots of vantage points which are quite far apart.

In terms of oddities in our skies, being a historian and researcher of anomalous anything.. I've come across dozens of counts of odd stories from the area over the years, have even heard claimed personal sightings of a hand-full of friends and acquaintances here--so it is quite odd that I only learned of this "mass sighting" through the Grail, then again, big city. For my part, and I am by no means a hardcore skeptic, I've never seen a thing here--have been here for over a decade and look out over the entire J.S.C. campus in the evenings from a third floor patio.

I'll keep watching though!

minime13's picture
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I was driving through the city that night (Houston), and it was originally an extraordinarily stormy night that ended up being rather clear. Those are just our storms - when they're bad, they roll through and are gone in a flash. So, that shouldn't discredit the photos - that's just Houston weather.

The video seems to be the most unusual, and perhaps it is ball lightning. If so, it is an amazing phenomenon in itself to capture such an event, as I think the first time it's even been observed in nature (rather than being discussed in theory) was earlier this year. Either way, a weird occurrence.

Myself and several of my friends had some weird phone problems in the days after this, as well. Could be the large amount of lightning strikes/electricity in the skies that night...or maybe something else. I didn't see anything more than an awesome light show, courtesy of nature.

terry the censor's picture
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The same thing happened in 2010 with kids taking pictures from inside a bus.

http://thetruthbehindthescenes.wordpress...