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NASA Responds to Viral 'UFO' Video


A video screen grab of International Space Station's video feed

A video screen grab of International Space Station's video feed

This is What’s Trending Today…

People on social media have been accusing the American space agency, NASA, of shutting off its live video from the International Space Station. They claim NASA turned off the video stream last week because it showed images of a UFO -- an unidentified flying object.

The video was filmed July 9. A YouTube user named Streepcap1 posted a short part of the International Space Station video. The one-minute 40-second video shows a bright object coming into view. Shortly after the object appears, the video stream experienced technical problems and shut down.

Streetcap1 wrote, “This could well be a meteor or the like. What made it interesting was the camera cut off when the UFO seemed to stop.”

Streetcap1's video has been viewed more than 2.7 million times. It quickly became a trending topic on Twitter and Facebook.

A few days later, NASA answered the questions and theories offered online by people who call themselves “UFO hunters.”

NASA spokesman Daniel Huot told the technology magazine CNET that the station "regularly passes out of range,” which causes the video signal to disappear.

He also said that the video was part of the NASA’s High Definition Earth Viewing experiment. The project includes many different cameras. They are on “automatic controls to cycle through the various cameras,” he said.

So, NASA says, there is no person watching or controlling the video. Huot said the bright object could have been the moon, space debris, or just reflections from the station windows.

And that's What's Trending Today.

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Words in This Story

regularly - adv. at the same time every day, week, month, etc.

range - n. the distance over which someone or something can see, hear, or reach someone or something else

debris - n. the pieces that are left after something has been destroyed

reflection - n. an image that is seen in a mirror or on a shiny surface

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