reported that Elijah Prychodzko, an amateur astronomer, filmed a bright, circular object in the air through his telescope over Sacramento on December 20. According to the report, late afternoon on December 20, Prychodzko was observing the sky through a telescope when he noticed an explosion in the sky. He recorded the incident by putting his smartphone camera against the telescope viewfinder. He told CBS Sacramento
"I saw something that I'd never seen before. I saw another object orbiting this, whatever it was up there, and I've never seen anything like that before."
The video shows the explosion as caught on camera by the amateur astronomer. He can be heard saying: "Oh, my God, it blew up. Something just blew up."
Prychodzko sent the video to Cody Stark of CBS Sacramento, who sent it to Stephen P. Maran, author of Astronomy For Dummies
Maran, press officer of the American Astronomical Society, has been involved in several NASA programs. He told CBS Sacramento
that he does not believe the incident was an explosion in space or an astronomical event of any sort.
However, the true nature of the explosion has now been confirmed by comparing a photo of a balloon exploding over Tampa Bay, Fla., on July 2, 2012, with the one Prychodzko took over Sacramento on December 20.
Many had argued that it was a weather balloon explosion. The Huffington Post
reports that a UFO researcher Frank Warren, editor and publisher of The UFO Chronicles
website, said: "Obviously, something of this magnitude (planetary-size space explosion) would have been noticed by government (NASA) and or professional astronomers along with a host of amateur astronomers. After reviewing several videos of 'weather balloons bursting' at altitude, it leaves no question as to what the image in the Prychodzko video really is. Like any case we dig into, one either finds ancillary evidence in support of a claim, none, or just the opposite. This one fell apart rather quickly -- research 101."
According The Huffington Post
"In videos of weather balloon explosions -- which can be found on the Internet -- it looks like something is 'orbiting' the main balloon, when, in fact, it's an instrument package called a radiosonde that swings under the balloon, giving the appearance of being in orbit around the balloon. As the balloon rises, the decreased air pressure causes it to expand until it eventually bursts."
also reported on January 4, that the exploding UFO was actually a weather balloon.
Although participants in several UFO forums had declared the incident as proof of the existence of alien life forms and ET spacecrafts, participants in an Above Top Secret forum discussed the possibility that the object was a weather balloon. A message posted to the forum and attributed to the National Weather Service Upper Air Observations Program, said:
"It is very likely a weather balloon that burst. The small dot 'orbiting' the balloon was the radiosonde that was attached below it with about 70 to 100 feet of string. The weather balloon was likely released by the National Weather Service upper air station in Oakland, Calif., at about 3:00 p.m. local time."
reports that George Cline, observation program officer for the National Weather Service's office in Sacramento, confirmed that Prychodzko's reported sighting fits the afternoon timing for release of their balloons. He told NBC News
: "That would put it right around the time for a balloon burst."