Did NASA cut a live feed from the International Space Station (ISS)? Some people who believe so quickly took to social media, charging the space agency with a coverup of astronomical proportions. However, NASA officials have now answered those allegations, although questions remain surrounding the recent events of July 9.
A video posted on YouTube was purported to show an unidentified flying object (UFO) passing into view of cameras attached to the world's most advanced space station. Soon after the object is seen on the film, the video is cut. This quick change resulted in a flurry of social media posts, claiming NASA was attempting to hide the presence of alien beings.
The strange object seen in the video recording passed from space down toward Earth. No detail is seen on the object recorded in the latest video, as only an irregular white/gray blob is visible. Even proponents of the idea that this is a recording of an alien spacecraft have acknowledged it may show nothing more spectacular than a meteor falling to Earth.
"Remember a ufo is an unidentified flying object. This could well be a meteor or the like. What made it interesting was the camera cut off when the ufo seemed to stop," Streetcap1 wrote on the caption to the original video.
Officials from NASA state that no unidentified objects were seen from the ISS, and explain that most similar "objects" seen turn out to be nothing more than internal reflections within the space station, or lights positioned outside the orbiting outpost.
"Reflections from station windows, the spacecraft structure itself or lights from Earth commonly appear as artifacts in photos and videos from the orbiting laboratory, just as reflections often appear in pictures taken on Earth," a spokesperson from the Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate at NASA said.
As the ISS orbits around the Earth 16 times each day, the outpost regularly falls out of touch with Tracking and Data Relay Satellites (TDRS) used to relay data between the space station and controllers on the ground. The station also frequently loses contact with the ground, as equipment failures and other glitches occur. When this occurs, NASA officials stated, the agency normally cuts the feed to a video slate or blue screen.
Bright objects fall to the Earth on a regular basis, as meteors and space debris tumble toward our planet. As these objects enter the atmosphere, they glow as the objects pass through the air — a phenomenon we see on the ground as shooting stars. These events can resemble the light seen in the controversial video which was viewed nearly 2.3 million times in the first week following the release of the recording.
The same YouTube user, who placed this latest video online, previously claimed seeing another UFO near the ISS in 2014. Since that time, the user has posted several videos showing unusual lights in space, as well as vaguely geometric shapes on the moon.
Given the large number of people working for NASA, the chances that such a magnificent discovery as the presence of alien life could be kept a secret would likely be small.