PHOENIX - What was that floating (sometimes stationary) bright, glowing object hovering over the Valley Monday evening?
Did you see it? Some thought it was a UFO, a weather balloon or even an alien spaceship.
Several ABC15 viewers emailed us photos and video clips of this white, glowing object. Others took to social media posting photos and trying to guess what was hovering high in the sky.
The real question: What the heck was it?
The National Weather Service in Phoenix confirmed that it was a student research balloon, part of the Columbia Scientific Balloon Facility .
HASP 643N, the balloon's official name, launched from the Physical Science Lab at New Mexico State University. located north of Roswell, N.M. That's approximately 471 miles away from Phoenix or some 412 nautical miles.
The flight was part of The Columbia Scientific Balloon Facility, which is a NASA facility, managed by New Mexico State University, according to the CSBF website.
The CSBF provides very large -- 400-foot wide -- high-altitude (and unmanned) balloons that can reach upwards of 120,000 feet. At the end of the balloon is a payload, which is the device that is conducting the research for the flight.
At last check of an online live tracking of the balloon, the payload landed in a remote part of the desert west of Wittmann, Ariz.
According to the website , there are six balloon flights scheduled for the month of September.
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