11:44 GMT05 December 2020
Listen Live
    Tech
    Get short URL
    by
    139
    Subscribe

    As a huge bright shape sped across the sky above New Zealand recently, as puzzled residents tried to figure out what the object might be, with speculation ranging from meteor, or hypersonic guided shell to UFOs drawing sperm-like shapes in their wake.

    A huge weird object distinctly visible in the sky on 6 December left New Zealanders wondering just what it was, with imaginations running wild and many speculating it could be an UFO.

    As those who witnessed the fascinating sight shared their impressions, Stuff website posted comments from excited residents.

    Jason Wilmshurst from Katikati in the Bay of Plenty thought it was a large meteor over Rotorua, adding the object was "huge".

    "It moved across the sky from east to west, heading towards Taupo," he said.

    Napier resident Simoné Du Buisson said it was visible from the suburb of Tamatea, posting a snap simply titled Something weird in the sky.

    As the debate gathered momentum, an official announcement put a damper on the speculations, as it seems the object was less a UFO and more of an electron rocket launched by Rocket Lab on a mission titled “Running Out of Fingers”.

    The name, incidentally, is a nod to the tenth electron flight since they began in May 2017.

    With UFO speculations dying down, nevertheless, excited netizens posted dramatic snapshots and footage from different areas where the launched object was visible, eagerly sharing their impressions and speculating what the object shooting across the skies looked like.

    On 6 December Rocket Lab, a private spaceflight company that provides launches for small satellites to Earth orbit, launched seven satellites to orbit, as a two-stage Electron rocket lifted off from the company's Mahia Peninsula New Zealand launch site.

    The mission was the 10th-ever launch for Rocket Lab, founded in Auckland in 2006, with a second headquarters in Huntington Beach, California since 2013.

    The company traditionally bestows a whimsical nickname on each flight.

    Thus, the first launch in May 2017 was called "It's A Test." Their second was called "Still Testing," while the third was named "It's Business Time."

    The company is also in the process of developing reusable boosters.

    Speaking of the current launch, Rocket Lab representatives wrote in the mission press kit:

    "This mission will play a key role in helping us gather data and iterate towards our first full recovery mission next year."

    Related:

    Russian Soyuz-ST to Launch With British OneWeb Communications Satellites in 2020 - Source
    Green Light for BRICS Satellite Amid Space Arms Race Fears
    India's Electric Eye: ISRO Successfully Launches Cartosat-3 Satellite into Space
    Sky Skimmer: Rocket Lab Sets Date for Lightweight Spacecraft Test Launch
    New Zealand Joins Space Nations With First Successful Rocket Launch - Rocket Lab
    Tags:
    satellite, satellites, Satellite, Rocket Lab, launch, launch, UFOs, UFO
    Community standardsDiscussion