Dubai: On Wednesday night, residents in the UAE who happened to be outdoors spotted a moving streak of light in the night sky.
Was it a meteorite, an asteroid or a comet? Or was it something out of this world?
Residents who saw the unusual bright light whizzing over Dubai shared their videos with Gulf News and also posted it on social networking sites, who expressed their curiosity as to what the shiny object in question could be.
One social media user, who goes by the alias Cat's Got My Tongue, said: “At around 7.45pm a single UFO object appeared for a short time over the skies of Dubai in the United Arab Emirates. Some speculated as to whether this was a comet, meteor or asteroid?”
Ebrahim Al Jarwan, an astronomer and General Supervisor at Sharjah Planetarium, told Gulf News that this was actually the second sighting made within the month.
“This was not a space object and it was not the first time that we have seen this. This is the second time that we have seen the flying object in less than one month,” explained Al Jarwan.
“We [at Sharjah Planetarium] have also been investigating the incident and found out that there is a company in Dubai that has been using the aircraft for tourism purposes. The flight was made between the desert of Dubai and Abu Dhabi,” he said.
“So the light that everybody saw flying around in the sky was not a natural object, nor was it a meteorite. It was merely flight activity taking place in the UAE.”
Indian expat Shiny Shajudheen and daughter Ashley spotted the “awesome but scary flares” in the sky from Al Khail Gate in Al Quoz around 7:50pm.
“I was driving inside our community and my daughter first spotted this weird fireball kind of stuff in the sky. Then I pulled over and took this video,” said Shiny.
Prior to recording the video in which two trails of flares can be seen swirling while slowly going down, she said they saw both of them crisscrossing each other.
“It was an awesome sight but scary also as we couldn’t understand what they are. We felt they are not meteors. I was wondering if these are some hot air balloons.”
Hasan Al Hariri, CEO of Dubai Astronomy Group, confirmed to Gulf News that the UFOs sighted by residents are not celestial objects.
“The video shows us some kind of two fireballs coming down from the sky and they are not following a straight line or a trajectory, from which you can see clearly that it is not a celestial object,” he said.
“They are swirling and twisting while falling down and that clearly indicates that these objects are manmade because they are changing the directions. At the same time they are not exploding and their speed is very slow which doesn’t happen with the celestial objects like these. So all of these criteria conclude that it is not something coming from the space. It is not a meteor or anything like that,” he further explained.
He also speculated that the objects looked like burnt balloons aimlessly falling down.
However, a company providing hot air balloon rides in Dubai ruled this out saying night service is not legally permitted for hot air balloons due to visibility constraints.
Gulf News has approached Skydive Dubai to check if there was any skydiving activity with flares that happened on Wednesday night that could look like this.