Swirly Thing Alert!

So, those photographs of a huge swirly thing in the sky over Norway are fake, right?
Actually no. They are real! Yeah, I know, my first reaction was you've got to be kidding me. I tried my best to not read the text explaining it because I just knew I could figure it out... it was a... no, maybe it's a... oh, could it be a... no, it couldn't be that. I knew it was real, but what the heck was it?

Want to have a guess yourself? Take a look at the image below (click for big-ness) and don't read any further until you have guessed. Good luck!

Yes, this is a real photograph!

I couldn't resist any longer, I just had to know. As it turns out this is a missile test that failed as the second stage ignited. The blue cone poking out of the center is the exhaust plume, and the spiral is material being ejected as it spins out of control - lit up by the rocket burning out. Yesterday morning Moscow papers reported on the Norway photos and videos and about the speculation that it's a failed Bulava launch, but the state controlled TV channels have been remarkably quiet on the issue. Silence is golden where military failures are concerned, I suppose.

This clip from CBS sums it up nicely.

Happy Swirling, Spacers!

Image credit: Odd Magne Haugen
Digg this


MsWild said...

Guess you missed my post (shared from Maddow) on Facebook with this link to the best video of the "swirlies": http://www1.nrk.no/nett-tv/indeks/193809