Japanese and local astronomers say that green lasers are coming down from a Chinese satellite above the Hawaiian Islands.
In late January, a camera on top of the Subaru Telescope on Mauna Kea, which is part of the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan, took the video.
At first, people thought the lasers came from a NASA altimeter satellite because they only shone for a few seconds. On Monday, February 6, the NAOJ put out a note that said NASA scientists –
“…did a simulation of the trajectory of satellites that have a similar instrument and found a most likely candidate as the ACDL instrument by the Chinese Daqi-1/AEMS satellite.”
Roy Gal an astronomer from the University of Hawaii who did some research on AEMS equipment spoke –
“It’s a Chinese satellite that is measuring pollutants, among other things, it has many different instruments on it.”
“Some kind of topographical mapping or they’re also used for measuring stuff in Earth’s atmosphere, and I think that’s what it is, environmental measurement satellite.”
Ray L’Heureux Former Marine Forces Pacific chief of staff told –
“I’m not sure, and this is my opinion, why the Chinese — who are probably some of the most prolific polluters on the planet — would be collecting data on pollutants on this side of the Pacific.”
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Both experts said that the object is not a clear-cut spy satellite. Governments all over the world have it in their records and know about it. Gal said –
“The U.S. has satellites to do the same thing, so, in this case, despite all the flurry, well deserved flurry, about Chinese spy satellites and other devices, this one is just orbiting earth and has a known orbit.”
The video from Mauna Kea was taken on Saturday, January 28, before a Chinese balloon flew over the U.S. mainland and was shot down off the coast of South Carolina. L’Heureux said –
“They can shut down any communications nodes that they want if they believe that the public is getting too much information. So yeah, I think it’s more probably military than everything else, that’s, that makes sense.”
Gal said that the Chinese satellite doesn’t pose a threat to Hawaii or the people who live there. Gal said –
“No, it’s not a risk to Hawaii or anyplace else, too. We have aircraft making these measurements all the time. If you’ve seen topographical maps with high precision, those are made using sometimes this kind of thing.”
L’Heureux said –
“It seems to me that those tensions are there. People are a little antsy, and I think that we just need to be a little bit more aware, vigilant.”