Strange Sun-like Object Any Ideas?

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Strange Sun-like Object... Any Ideas???

A few days ago, my family and I were stuck in a traffic jam on the expressway about an hour before sunset. There were no clouds in the sky and my sister pointed out what appeared to be a small sun a quite a bit to the southeast of the larger one. I have seen comets, shooting stars, and aircraft of many types, but never anything of this magnitude, especially during broad daylight. The object was nearly identical to the sun in color and brightness, and about 1/5 it's size. It appeared to remain stationary for the hour or so until sunset, at which point we lost sight of it, though I couldn't say whether it disappeared or sunk below the horizon. I've wracked my brains and the only thing I haven't ruled out is some sort of bizarre geomagnetic event. There were no reports in newspapers or astronomy journals in the area that I am aware of, and I am thoroughly stumped as to what it could have been. Any ideas would be appreciated.
 

NateTG

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Could it have been a reflection of the sun?

Under certain circumstanaces, the surfaces of temperature difference in the air can become reflective. If the object was close to the sun in brightness and size and color, that's a possibility.

If you only saw it from inside the car, then it might also have been a reflection onto your windshield from a convenient surface.
 

Labguy

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Probably a "sundog", especially if you live where it is cold this time of year. Usually seen in pairs,one left and one right of the sun. Any search will turn up a lot about sundogs and how they form.

Labguy
 

blu

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Maybe it was the moon?

Im not sure whether the moon has been known to reflect light,
and it would appear much larger than the sun hmmm ..
 
Originally posted by blu

Im not sure whether the moon has been known to reflect light,
and it would appear much larger than the sun hmmm ..
Of course the moon reflects light. It certainly wouldn't be too bright without the Sun. And it would appear about the same size as the Sun... unless perhaps by illusion. But the two are approximatey the same angular diameter.
 
There was a lunar eclipse about 2 days ago, could it have had to do with that?
 

russ_watters

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Originally posted by cassiopeiae
There was a lunar eclipse about 2 days ago, could it have had to do with that?
Since at the tme of a lunar eclipse, the moon is on the OPPOSITE side of the earth from the sun, its unlikely it was the moon.
 
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Which reminds me I didn't get too see it because of clouds :(
 

Phobos

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Originally posted by russ_watters
Since at the tme of a lunar eclipse, the moon is on the OPPOSITE side of the earth from the sun, its unlikely it was the moon.
Precisely. During the lunar eclipse (and any full moon), the moon is on the opposite side of the sky from the sun. A full Moon is just rising in the east as the sun is setting in the west. The Moon appears closer to the sun in the sky when it's less than full, but then it wouldn't appear circular, would it? (i.e., crescent moon)

The sun dog explanation seems like a good one. Quick links...
http://www.amtsgym-sdbg.dk/as/halo/
http://itss.raytheon.com/cafe/qadir/q2546.html
 
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Originally posted by StephenPrivitera
Of course the moon reflects light. It certainly wouldn't be too bright without the Sun. And it would appear about the same size as the Sun... unless perhaps by illusion. But the two are approximatey the same angular diameter.
Why the 'of course' ?
Not everyone knows the same things as everyone else.
What is 'of course' to you today was news to you at some point in the past ( unless, of course, you have known that since birth ).
 
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Re: Strange Sun-like Object... Any Ideas???

I vote that it was the moon.
 

Dotini

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Re: Strange Sun-like Object... Any Ideas???

...The object was nearly identical to the sun in color and brightness, and about 1/5 it's size. It appeared to remain stationary for the hour or so until sunset, at which point we lost sight of it, though I couldn't say whether it disappeared or sunk below the horizon. I've wracked my brains and the only thing I haven't ruled out is some sort of bizarre geomagnetic event.
I saw something like this phenomenon about two months ago in Seattle.

Here is a video of a similar apparition seen in China. It has been determined to be a mirage.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a8fWUPlqwlQ&feature=related

What is not a mirage are electric blue noctilucent clouds, now being seen all over Earth shortly after sunset. They were completely unknown 100 years ago, so our atmosphere must be evolving in certain ways...

Respectfully submitted,
Steve
 

turbo

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Re: Strange Sun-like Object... Any Ideas???

Is this a necropost record?
 

Dotini

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Re: Strange Sun-like Object... Any Ideas???

Is this a necropost record?
What are the Forum rules for such matters? Are questions, answers or other data known to "go bad" after a certain period of time? Why shouldn't all threads automatically be deleted after say, 90 hours or 90 days of inactivity?

All that is gold does not glitter
Not all who wander are lost
The old that is strong does not wither
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.
 
Last edited:

bcrowell

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Re: Strange Sun-like Object... Any Ideas???

What are the Forum rules for such matters? Are questions, answers or other data known to "go bad" after a certain period of time?
It's frowned upon to "necropost." One reason is that people start making an effort to reply to your post, not realizing that they're wasting their time because the thread was from 8 years ago and the people involved are no longer looking at the thread.

Why shouldn't all threads automatically be deleted after say, 90 hours or 90 days of inactivity?
Because threads can contain permanently useful material.
 

Evo

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Re: Strange Sun-like Object... Any Ideas???

But they should be locked as the older threads no longer meet our rules.
 

FlexGunship

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Re: Strange Sun-like Object... Any Ideas???

I vote that it was the moon.
Aah ha! You registered an account for the sole purpose of voting on a hypothesis that was clearly discredited 5 posts (and 8 years) ago?

That's a necropost record in two respects.

I think you're late for your vote with the Warren commission.
 
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Re: Strange Sun-like Object... Any Ideas???

it couldent have been the moon because it the moon was next to the sun the surface of the moon facing us would be away from the sun so it wouldent have been very bright. my vote is on soe sort of atmospheric refraction.
 

Borek

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Re: Strange Sun-like Object... Any Ideas???

Apparently this thread needs to be locked.
 

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