Maybe this has something to do with it:
The "funny-looking spheroid" is a typical response of the SOHO LASCO coronagraph CCD detector to an object (planet or bright star) of small angular
extent but so bright that it saturates the CCD camera so that "bleeding" occurs along pixel rows. There is a bright horizontal streak on either side
of the image, because the charge leaks easier along the direction in which the CCD image is read out by the associated electronics.
CCD stands for charge-coupled detector, and refers to a silicon chip, usually a centimeter or two across, divided into a grid of cells, each of which
acts like a small photomultiplier in that an incoming photon knocks loose one or more electrons. The electrons are "read out" by row (fast
direction) and column (slow direction), the current converted to a digital signal, and each cell or picture element ("pixel") thus assigned a
digital value proportional to the the number of incoming photons in that pixel (the brightness of the part of the image falling on that pixel). This
is the same kind of detector as is used in a hand-held video camera, though until recently, the analog-to-digital conversion was left out in consumer
If you point a video camera at a very bright source (say, the Sun), the image "blooms" or brightens all over --- there are so many electrons
produced in the pixels corresponding to the bright source that they spill over into adjacent rows and column, perhaps over the entire detector. Better
CCD's will "bleed" only along the fast readout direction (a single row), and perhaps a few adjacent rows.
The LASCO and EIT CCD cameras include "anti-bleed" electronics which limit the pixel bleeding around bright sources to less than the full row (and
usually no adjacent rows). In the case of a marginally too-bright object, the pixel bleeding will be only a few pixels in either direction along the
fast readout direction. Thus, the "flying saucer" images.
A few of the LASCO images that have appeared on the "extraterrestrial" Web sites show much larger and brighter, but still saucer-like features.
These images are in fact obtained with the instrument door closed, but with an incorrectly long exposure. The big "saucers" result from massive
pixel bleeding along every row of the detector containing part of the image of the "opal," or small diffusing lens, in the instrument door, that is
used for obtaining calibration data.
If your correspondents still prefer to believe that the pixel-bled images of planets or bright stars are something else, ask them why the extended
part of the "saucers" (i.e., the pixel bleeding) always occurs in the same direction relative to the image --- even when the spacecraft is rolled
relative to its normal orientation relative to the Sun.