What were the strange flashes illuminating the sky over Kotzebue and other areas of the Arctic?
This still unexplained sky phenomenon was accompanied by booms. A meteor disintegration? Some children pulling a prank? Or some rare and mysterious thundersnows?
More than a dozen people reported seeing several bright flashes in the sky, unexplained by air traffic or other human activity. One thought neighborhood children were pulling a prank at first. Another suggested a meteor had split into three parts. Another reported hearing booms.
So what? You remember this video filmed in Yekaterinburg?
Well, yes, that’s a rare thundersnow, which occurs under circumstances similar to a thunderstorm as a cold or warm front moves into an area. The thunder is often muffled by the snow, but the flashes may still be visible. But to occur, the conditions have to be just right!
And what about this one… Look at the column of light illuminating the dark sky:
Weather conditions in Kotzebue and surrounding areas did include some warmer air moving north that could have created enough instability to give rise to thundersnow. But the weather service doesn’t monitor meteor events. So an fireball explosion could also explain the early morning flashes.