What we know about UFO reports that are most likely Chinese Lanterns
“Chinese Lanterns” or sky lanterns are pyrotechnics sold prolifically on the Internet and in
fireworks stands. They are readily available to the public in a variety of sizes, and
are quite often sighted in conjunction with holidays (4th of July, New Years, etc.)
They consist of a thin paper envelope with a wide opening on the bottom side.
Suspended within this opening is a piece of cardboard that has been saturated with
paraffin wax. The wax is ignited with a match and as it burns, it heats air, which
rises into the envelope. At some point the air in the envelope plus the envelope
becomes lighter that the surrounding air, and the envelope ascends as a pilotless hot
air balloon of sorts. The device depends upon the prevailing winds to move
laterally (horizontally) and air temperature to move vertically. When the wax burns
out the device disappears and eventually returns to earth.
The burning wax produces a flickering visual effect, which is often described by
observers as “pulsing.” They are the bane of the serious UFO investigator.
The devices are often launched in multiples creating a “flotilla.” They appear to fly
in “formation” simply because they are independently riding on the same air
currents, although they can be tethered to each other by nearly invisible thread.
They create much excitement in unsuspecting witnesses, and frequently stimulate
one’s imagination causing reports that contain exaggerations and embellishments.
Field Investigators and witnesses alike can be certain to identify them IF:
-They follow the direction and speed of the wind
-They glow primarily organge or amber but can have mutiple colors depending on the paper uesed
-pulse, or flicker
-they may eventually disappear (burn out) lasting approximatly 2 to 6 minuts total, some may last longer.
The following are descriptions of this identified flying objects from witnesses.
"I first saw a single glowing orange circle in the sky. Coming from the west side of interstate 95 it crossed over taking a single path and ascending into the sky over the ocean just to "disappear". Then I witnessed 3 in a triangular pattern do the same thing. Then 2 did the same thing. Then one. Then another. I have video as well.
A person who lives in my neighborhood also saw one of them. She said when the light went out she would still see a silver circle in the sky."
"On Sunday night around 7 pm, after sun went down, I was inside my home. My boyfriend came up fast and said to get outside quick. So I followed him out to the front of our house and we ran out to middle of street, and he was pointing up, saying look! What I saw looked like fire balls gliding smoothly from the north. They were on a from N to a NNE approximate path. As I watched they appeared out of nowhere, just gliding along. Never saw any rapid acceleration. One would appear then couple seconds later another is following, same speed and altitude, a couple of seconds then another. This continued for a few minutes. At this time about 4 of them clustered up on the same path. They were moving around each other."
"I haven't seen these lights in a couple months. I honestly get a bit excited, as well as a little freaked out. I've only seen these same lights 3 times before. This July 4th being the 4th time, go figure. And as I've said before, it has to be more than a coincidence that I wasn't the only one seeing these lights around New Years, in other states as well. Thought I was going crazy.
I was in the car with my mom and my sister, since we were coming back from fireworks. It was quite cloudy that night since it had been raining a lot the previous day, and it was smoky from all the fireworks being shot off. I noticed while looking out the window, even with it being very not visible in the sky, the same lights that I have seen before. At first I brushed it off because it could have been a spark from the firework debris. I shouted "Look, it's the "alien lights" again". My sister never believed me when I would describe these strange lights in the sky. She started saying "Holy crap, those are not normal lights". I can brush these off and say, maybe they are lanterns. But I don't think this is the case with these sky lights.
It's a hard street/road to park on, so we stopped on the side and I did my best to not move around a lot with my digital camera. Thanking my lucky starts I had it with me this time. It was noisy from traffic and popping sounds of fireworks, but you never hear anything in the sky from these things. They're always in a vertical row, not always one beneath the other in perfect formation, but this group was in a formation pretty much. What I did noticed while looking at my video footage was the 2 of the lights zoom to the right and just disappears. My sister said she also saw another light come out and drop down then hovered in place.
When I recorded the last one, because the rest disappeared, it glowed then vanished. Whenever I zoom in and try to it again, it's nowhere to be found."
When witnessing strange lights in the sky or investigating a UFO report we must include all the facts inorder to rule out man made objects like Chinese Lanterns. Chinese lanterns are strange and not ordinary but completely man made.