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Originally posted by Yarium
StMichael, I'm appalled. Is this not deny ignorance? Ignorance covers not just only accepting what we're told, but also not only accepting wild speculation. Ignorance is the opposite of finding THE TRUTH. Although I may have a theory that might explain this, it does not mean that I am blind to the truth.
If a UFO appeared in front of me, my eyes would be open, and I would study it, and find out what it is. This has happened to me in the past, I have seen UFOs - but the term UFO means UNIDENTIFIED flying object, and I will always reflect on what it might have been, either terrestial or otherwise.
Now, onto the point at hand.
I think ChristyZ is right, it does sound a LOT like the Northern Lights. However, this ionization of the air does not necessarily have to happen at the poles, though it does occur there most often. Sometimes it will happen in a localized area (and by localized, I mean probably only visible above half a small state - which Florida is not).
However, it confuses me as to why it only lasted 10 seconds or so.
Thus, I do not think it was the Northern Lights.
At the moment, the only other terrestial phenomena I can think of would be a plane or helicopter flying above the clouds. The "blue" may have instead been a whitish light that appeared blue due to the dark sky and the masking by the cloud. This would explain its briefness.
Some more information would be nice, especially on the following:
How localized was it? By this I mean, was it ALL the clouds to your north? Or just small patches.
How fast were the colours changing? Was it once every second? Three times a second? Once every two seconds?
Also, was it really ten seconds? Or is that an exageration caused by the sheer magnificence of the event. In which case, it's conceivable it was a fireball that was illuminating the clouds, which could be why you're describing it like it was "fireworks". 10 Seconds is too long for this, but 5 or even 7 seconds is conceivable.
Like I said, some more info would be nice to have.
Originally posted by Yarium
Thank you for the compliments , and thank you again for posting more detail. It's sounding more and more like a Fireball to me now.
Fireballs are dense packs of ice and dust and rocks, very much like meteors, that enter our atmosphere and burn up. In other words, they're giant shooting stars. Shooting stars are tiny pieces - the Fireballs are the big daddies, so to speak.
So a Fireball, upon entering the atmosphere, burns up - releasing a lot of light of different colours, as the air around it, and the particles in it, burst into flames and plasma from the intense heat. One of the predominant colours is green, although red, and blue have been observed as well (PURPLE is a new one though - although it could have been the mixing of red and blue).
There was a whole SLEW of fire-ball sightings being mistaken for UFOs on ATS not long ago (about a month or 2 ago), due to their frequency during the meteor shower. I've seen one myself, first-hand, above the skies of Ottawa a year plus few months ago. Amazing sights really. And it was at about 3am - and the only reason I saw it was because someone pulled a fire-alarm and we all had to go outside.
It lasted about 4 seconds.
So, it's sounding like you and your friend witnessed a phenomenon almost as rare as a UFO! Don't think you're less special for that. These things don't happen often, and are even less often observed by someone! They are beautiful and majestic, and they do light up a whole patch of sky as they tear through the atmosphere.
Hope that can answer what you saw!