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No. 70: Jul-Aug 1990

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Spinning Ball Of Light Inscribes Crop Circles

In the January 1990 issue of the Journal of Meteorology, U.K., two reports appeared describing eyewitness observations of crop circles-in-the-making. Both involved a self-luminous spinning ball of light. We reproduce here the second of these accounts.

June 28, 1989, north-central Wiltshire, near Silbury Hill.

"Soon after midnight the occupier of the roadside cottage by the path which leads to West Kennett Long Barrow noticed a large ball of light 400 metres distant in a wheatfield to the west. At the time of the observation he was walking from house to garage, and had a clear view to the illuminated part of the field through a gap in a hedge which borders his garden. He described the ball as orange in colour, adding that it was brighter around the periphery, and he guessed the diameter as 30-40 feet (say, 10-13 metres). When first seen, the ball was already low over the field and still descending. The witness watched the base of the ball 'go flat' as it made contact with the crop and/or the ground. The ball then gave 'a little bounce' and after a further 'seven or eight seconds' disappeared in.

"Next morning on leaving the house the witness could see via the gap in the hedge a large circle at the place which corresponded to the position of the light source the previous night, and some smaller circles were evident as well."

A flyover the same day revealed a big circle with a ring around it plus smaller circles. G.T. Meaden (the writer) arrived at the site on the morning of the 30th to find that a half dozen additional circles had joined the earlier ones. Five of these formed a quintuplet - a large central circle with four small evenly spaced outriders.

(Meaden, G.T.; "Nocturnal Eye Witness Observation of Circles in the Making. Part 2: North Wiltshire, 29th June 1989," Journal of Meteorology, U.K., 15:3, 1990. Journal address: 54 Frome Road, Bradford-on-Avon, Wiltshire, ENGLAND BA15 1LD)

Comment. Meaden, Editor of the Journal of Meteorology, U.K., is the proponent of the plasma-vortex theory of crop-circle formation. It is remarkable that circles should have been inscribed in the same spot two nights running. It is equally strange that crop circles seem to favor ancient sites, such as Silbury Hill.

From Science Frontiers #70, JUL-AUG 1990. 1990-2000 William R. Corliss

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  • "A sourcebook of unexplained phenomena is therefore a valuable addition to a collection of scientific literature. William R. Corliss has provided this in the past with his source books of scientific anomalies in several subjects, and now he has provided it for astronomy. He has done an excellent job of collecting and editing a large amount of material, taken in part from scientific journals and in part from scientific reporting in the popular or semi-scientific press." -- "The Mysterious Universe: A Handbook of Astronomical Anomalies", reviwed by Thomas Gold, Cornell University, in Icarus, vol.41, 1980

  • "An interesting, systematic presentation of unusual weather [..] This book is recommended for a general audience" --"Corliss, William R., Tornados, Dark Days, Anomalous Precipitation, and Related Weather Phenomena, Sourcebook Project, 1983.", revieweed in Choice, September 1983
  • "..the science is necessarily somewhat speculative, but Corliss's symthesis is based on reputable sources." -- "Corliss, William R. (Compiler). Lightning, Auroras, Nocturnal Lights, and Related Luminous Phenomena" reviwed by Joseph M. Moran, Univ. of Wisconsin in Science Books and Films, Sep/Oct 1983

  • "Before opening the book, I set certain standards that a volume which treads into dangerous grounds grounds like this must meet. The author scrupulously met, or even exceeded those standards. Each phenomenon is exhaustively documented, with references to scientific journals [..] and extensive quotations" -- "Book Review: The moon and planets: a catalog of astronomical anomalies", The Sourcebook Project, 1985., Corliss, W. R., Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Vol. 81, no. 1 (1987), p. 24., 02/1987