WATCH THE VIDEO: Mystery light could be Indian moon mission
UPDATE TUESDAY 6.40AM: IT HAS been suggested the mystery light which caught the attention of sky watchers across North Queensland may have been the launch of an Indian space craft headed to the moon.
The Indian Space Research Organisation launched the Chandrayaan2 yesterday.
Residents across northern Australia spotted the object from Mackay, Caval Ridge and all the way to the northern Territory.
ABC North West Queensland has reported the object was past of and Indian space mission to reach the moon.
USQ Professor Jonti Horner told the ABC the footage appeared to be an Indian rocket.
"Looking at the footage, it looks like what you get when a spacecraft above the atmosphere engages its rockets and does a burn," they said.
"It's way too slow moving to be a meteor. The consensus seems to be it's the Indian mission to the moon."
Indian media have reported the mission, which will the country's second journey to the moon, was spearheaded by two women.
It is understood the space craft will orbit the moon's south pole.
Dalby-based scientist and former NASA employee, Dr Peter Broxham, confirmed the mystery light streaking across the night sky on Monday night a rocket leaving the Earth's atmosphere on the way to the moon.
"What people were seeing was the space vehicle staging, it made its initial launch and then it's fired to gain more altitude. That's why it was so misty looking around the core of the vehicle," Dr Broxham said.
"It just so happens that the trajectory of the vehicle takes it straight across Queensland and it was still at such a low altitude, it still hadn't gained the height of the International Space Station yet."
Dr Broxham was a project manager at NASA on and off for about 40 years and has spent many years looking up at the sky, so he knew what people were seeing was something out of the ordinary.
"The biggest giveaway was how long it was up there and the misty trail around the core.
"The space station comes around like a very large dot in the sky, a continual spaced arc across the sky, and a shooting star is just there one second and gone the next," he said.
INITIAL: A MYSTERY light has been seen streaking across the sky in north and central Queensland tonight.
The footage captured was filmed from Ingham and appears to show an object similar to a meteor streaking across the atmosphere.
There are reports of the mystery light, seen moving east to west, from residents to the south of Queensland in Hervey Bay and all the way out to Julia Creek - including Mackay.
Reports have emerged that the object was seen in the sky for more than a minute and was not a flash like a meteor.
Speculation is mounting on social media that the light seen was from India's successful launch of its unmanned mission to the moon.
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