The Week highlights NASA’s desire to squelch yet another bit of fun. First here’s the video footage that got certain people all excited:
Following its public debunking of the 2012 Mayan apocalypse myth in 2009, Nasa has once again dignified a conspiracy theory with a response, claiming that a planet-sized triangular UFO is actually an optical illusion.
True believers had seized on video footage from Stereo-B, one of two Nasa probes studying the sun, which appeared to show a colossal triangular-shaped object. The video [above], which was recorded in December 2011, shows the triangle entering the frame from top right, while earth, Venus and the sun are all on the left of the frame.
Nasa has offered its own explanation for what it terms an “image artifact”. On the Stereo website they write: “The answer lies on the exact opposite side of the image. At the same time as this strange-looking feature starts being visible, the very bright planet Venus enters the HI2-B field-of-view from the lower left.
“Notice that Venus and the feature stay in step almost exactly opposite each other across the middle of the detector. This is not a coincidence. The strange looking geometrical ‘object’ is actually an internal reflection of the planet Venus within the telescope optics.” Cuttingly, the Nasa writer adds: “This effect has been seen many times before.”…
[continues at The Week]