How mysterious orbs could be used to predict earthquakes: Scientists link strange lights to movement in the Earth’s crust
- These strange lights can appear before earthquakes but rarely afterwards
- They often occur near rifts caused by movement in Earth’s tectonic plates
- Scientists believe the tension during this process creates an electronic charge, which turns into light when it reaches the surface
They have been linked to UFOs and hallucinations and thought to be harbingers of doom.
Now scientists claim to have unravelled more details about a family of mysterious floating orbs, known as ‘earthquake lights’
The lights, which take many forms and appear before or during earthquakes, could provide an early warning sign.
Mysterious floating orbs of lights are harbingers of an imminent earthquake, scientists claim. These lights were seen before the 2008 Sichuan earthquake in China
For instance, seconds before the 2009 L’Aquila, Italy earthquake struck, pedestrians saw 10cm high flames of light flickering above the stone-paved Francesco Crispi Avenue in the town’s historical city centre.
In 1988 a bright purple-pink globe of light moved through the sky along the St. Lawrence River near the city of Quebec, 11 days before a powerful quake.
And in 1906, about 100km northwest of San Francisco, a couple saw streams of light running along the ground two nights preceding the devastating earthquake that destroyed much of the city.
The rare earthquake lights are more likely to occur on or near a rift, an elongated depression or trough in the Earth’s crust bounded on both sides by normal faults, than other faults.