Shuttle Sparks Electro-Physics. Explosions Recorded
Written By: The Electric Warrior
photo: Red Sprite
(The Electric Warrior) - An unusual purple lightning
bolt seen in a San Francisco photograph of Shuttle
Columbia has gained national attention and also
sparked discussion about rare forms high-altitude
lightning. A network of sensitive listening devices
recorded subsonic explosions during the shuttle’s
reentry which could shed light on the Columbia
disaster. Another photograph captured by the US Air
Force Research Laboratory as the shuttle passed over
New Mexico is also being studied.
A purple corkscrew lightning bolt can reportedly be
seen in a photograph taken by a Bay Area shuttle
buff on the morning of the Columbia accident. NASA
experts are examining digital photographs which
await public release by a photographer who at this
time remains anonymous.
Strange flashes of colored lightning with names like
Red Sprites and Blue Jets are a recent scientific
discovery that continue to intrigue scientists. One
peculiar thing about the Blue Jets phenomenon is that
their discharge travels away from Earth, up from a
stormy cloud bank toward the ionosphere. The Sprites
leap down from above.
SUBSONIC EXPLOSIONS RECORDED
Researchers at a scientific conference in Denver,
Colorado have confirmed the intercept of inaudible
"infrasound" signals during the shuttle’s reentry on
February 1. Infrasound sensor arrays have been used
to study the mysterious electrical discharges in the
upper atmosphere. People cannot hear infrasound, but
they can feel it from audio systems with the bass turned up.
The Toledo Blade reports that the Columbia recordings
have been sent to NASA for analysis. An expert with
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
said "We’ve been asked not to discuss the results
publicly, and we will honor that request." Some
believe the recordings could shed light on the theory
that a Blue Jet knocked Columbia out of the sky.
An expert in high-atmospheric physics at Los Alamos
National Laboratories in New Mexico has said it is
not likely that the electrical phenomenon had
anything to do with the Columbia accident, but it
needs to be studied. "I’m highly skeptical they
could have had anything to do with Columbia’s demise,"
he told the San Francisco Chronicle. "But somebody
needs to see how they interact with spacecraft."
SHUTTLE STUDY GROUPS. DIGITAL CAMERA GLITCH
NASA investigators have set up a panel of both
government and private experts to study the San
Francisco photograph. Another panel is studying
input from a network of powerful Air Force
telescopes and radar stations. The Space Agency
has pooled data from a variety of sources including
private citizens and secret government cameras in
an effort to create a time-line of events leading
up to the Columbia disaster.
A NASA official has said the "lightning strike"
photo is being studied to see what it means. The
digital camera that took the photo is known to have
its own color glitches. Nikon told WorldNetDaily
that unless they examine the camera it would be
speculation to say whether the anomalous purple
light had anything to do with a defect in the device.
Listening devices record explosions from dying shuttle
DENVER, CO (Toledo Blade) - A little-known network
of listening devices, used partly to detect rogue
nuclear tests, overheard Columbia’s death, recording
explosions as the space shuttle broke apart 39 miles
above the Earth. Government researchers gathered at
a scientific conference here confirmed intercept of
the so-called "infrasound" signals during the
shuttle’s fateful reentry on February 1.
NASA studying Columbia photos
SAN FRANCISCO (Chronicle) - NASA investigators of
the Columbia space shuttle disaster have set up a
study group to analyze a photograph, taken by an
amateur astronomer from a San Francisco hillside,
that appears to show a bolt of electricity striking
the doomed orbiter as it streaked across Northern
California...If the San Francisco photograph does
indeed depict a bolt of electricity in the ionosphere,
the "infrasonic" sensors in Colorado might be able
to detect the faint thunderclap that accompanied it.
Spy telescopes, radar could help shuttle probe
NATIONAL (CNN/AP) - NASA officials said Monday
that they have asked the Air Force Space Command
to review all data that might contain information
about the shuttle’s last flight. The effort has
already uncovered an observation made by ground-
based radar suggesting that an object may have hit
or broken off the shuttle on day two of its 16-day