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Bright object in night sky Tuesday likely a missile launch

A bright light visible from Christiansburg turned out to be a missile that was launched from a...
A bright light visible from Christiansburg turned out to be a missile that was launched from a submarine in South Florida Tuesday, February 9.(Twitter: @pucksandpints)
Published: Feb. 9, 2021 at 8:56 PM EST|Updated: Feb. 9, 2021 at 10:41 PM EST
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ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ) - What appeared to some in southwest Virginia as a comet trailing through the night sky, was likely a test of the TRIDENT-II ballistic missile launched from a NAVY submarine off the Florida coast.

The interesting light formation appeared in the southern sky around 6:30 p.m. and was visible up and down the east coast. Here’s what it looked like (below) from Christiansburg, VA as the sun was setting.

With a later sunset time, the missile was even more visible across the southern states where this video was captured in Aventura, Florida.

In fact, there were even sightings of the missile flying through the sky taken from the Turks and Caicos islands, some 575 miles from Florida.

Rocket and missile launches are most visible during the early evening and pre-sunrise thanks to the lower sun angle which illuminates the rocket vapor trail. Meteorologist Brad Panovich explains in a graphic below.

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