TECH
23/06/2015 06:07 BST | Updated 23/06/2015 06:59 BST

'Alien' Light Swinging Erratically Through The Clouds Filmed In Indiana

Mysterious footage of a beam of light swinging erratically among the clouds has gone viral.

The clip, shot as as storm approached in Greenwood, Indiana, was posted to Imgur on Sunday and has been viewed almost 2 million times.

The cameraman who filmed the spooky sight can be heard exclaiming and swearing as he tries to make sense of the weird phenomenon.

alien light

A torch of light was filmed swinging unpredictably through the clouds

Claims of a government conspiracy, alien activity and that is it in fact “God giving us the finger” have all been rolled out, as have theories the unsettling light was caused by a weather balloon or swamp gas.

But armchair sleuth yafd indicates it may be a little-known weather phenomenon caused by rapid light changes over the clouds.

He links to NASA’s Astronomy Picture of the Day site, which carries footage of a similar sight and explains:

"What's happening above those clouds? In the past few years, videos have appeared on the web detailing an unusual but little known phenomenon: rapid light changes over clouds. Upon inspection and contemplation, a leading hypothesis for its cause has now emerged. In sum, this hypothesis holds that a lightning discharge in a thundercloud can temporarily change the electric field above the cloud where charged ice crystals were reflecting sunlight. The new electric field quickly re-orients the geometric crystals to a new orientation that reflects sunlight differently. In other words, a lightning discharge can cause a sundog to jump. Soon, the old electric field may be restored, causing the ice crystals to return to their original orientation. To help this curious phenomenon become better studied, sky enthusiasts with similar jumping or dancing sundog videos are encouraged to share them.”

Jumping sundogs are also known as crown flashes.

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