Residents of Norway were alarmed when they spotted this strange, animated spiral in the sky without warning.
Upon first glance, many would think the image is simply a creation of an eager photoshop student, but the reports have been validated by hundreds of people who saw the same object.Â Video clips have emerged to further substantiate the still images.
It is believed that the spiral was caused by a malfunctioning Russian rocket that was launched from a submarine.Â Military experts state that the spiraling nature of the light is characteristic of a rocket-propelled object that is not functioning as planned.
SpaceWeather.com reports that a “no-fly” order was issued for the area on December 9th which would correspond to the period in which the Russian military may have been testing an inter-continental ballistic missile.
This explanation has not been confirmed by the Russian government, although it seems the most plausible given the images and video clips that have emerged.Â Regardless of the cause, one thing is certain:Â it caused quite an alarm not only for Norwegian residents, but people around the world.
Update [12/10/09:Â 08:15]:
The Russian Defense Ministry has confirmed the Russian Navy launched a Bulava ballistic missile on December 9, but will not officially confirm the missile as the cause of the spiral lights seen over Norway.
The Russian Navy confirmed the missile was fired from the “Dmitry Donskoi” nuclear submarine (shown above), but would not confirm the submarine’s location at the time of launch.