UFO hunters have spotted a curious object near the sun in a new NASA image. It is, in the words of a blogger for the website Gather, "what looks like a metallic, jointed spaceship with a gigantic extension, perhaps a boom arm, anchored off its lower end."
The YouTube video drawing attention to the object has quickly made its way to discussion forums and the tabloid press, and many seasoned UFO believers are calling it a definite "spot."
But does this image, which was taken by a camera on board NASA's Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) on Tuesday (April 24), really show a spaceship dropping by the sun to harvest some solar energy, as one YouTube commenter suggested? Or is this object something much more mundane? We asked scientists in the solar physics branch at the United States Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) — the group that analyzes data from Lasco 2, the telescopic camera that snapped the picture.
According to Nathan Rich, lead ground systems engineer in the NRL's solar physics branch, the "spaceship" is merely a collection of streaks left by cosmic rays, charged particles from space, which whizzed through the camera's sensor, or CCD, as the image was taken. . . .
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