A strange glimmer of light has been spotted this week in live footage from the International Space Station to stir up excitement in online specification circles. But don’t get too excited: social media quickly found an explanation for the weird array and its “meaty” rather than “ET”. Despite some netizens encouraging the R / UFO subreddit, the video probably doesn’t show evidence of alien life – just evidence of Kalamar.
“This must have been resolved,” r / tyrannosnorlax wrote in an update to their original post. “… Squid fishing lights are the most admirable explanation ever.” Now, this is still evidence of an alternative life – squids are, above all, very strange creatures – but the top theory of cephalopod evolution is not significantly extroverted. In reality, a photo taken by the crew of Expedition 37 missions in October 2013 and uploaded by the NASA Earth Observatory shows almost identical scenes.
“[S] This image of Susima Strait, a shallow body of water separate from South Japan and South Korea, shows the iveral distinctive colors of electric light,” Adam explained to Voyland for the observatory. “Fishermen probably spotted Todrod’s Pacificus as the Japanese flying squid bright. Such images began to pop up in the late 1970s when scientists began compiling images of the Earth on the first night. Although these may seem strange and unreasonable at first glance, they regularly use governments around the world to monitor their fishing activities.
They also provide oceanographers with valuable information about natural marine phenomena: for example, NASA oceanographers have found that sea urchins formed by varicose veins and rear currents in the water can sometimes be located by the light of fishing boats. Once the squidy explanation is given, the rest of the footage becomes more understandable. “In the second post I made, you can see more phishing lights at the bottom right and lots of city lights through the rest of the video,” r / tyrannosnorlax explained. “Patterns that look like stars are the result of higher gain that the ISS camera uses in low light, which I understand is combined with radiation from space.”
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