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Elon Musk has ‘not ruled out’ a UFO hitting the SpaceX rocket that exploded

Published Sep 9th, 2016 2:15PM EDT

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In early September, one of SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rockets undergoing testing exploded at Cape Canaveral. Thanks to some grainy video that shows birds flying across it, the internet’s conspiracy theorists shifted to top gear and started accusing aliens (or the US military).

As moon-landing as that might sound, SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has said that investigators have “not ruled out” some kind of flying object — an unidentified flying object, you might say — causing the explosion. Tinfoil hat time, everyone.

DON’T MISS: A UFO causing the SpaceX rocket explosion is the best conspiracy on the internet

Musk took to Twitter very early this morning to mostly complain about things:

Musk asking for crowdfunded help to understand a rocket explosion is a big change, and a bold move when you remember what happened last time Reddit tried to solve a mystery.

The SpaceX boss also handed a freebie to conspiracy theorists when he said they couldn’t out an object causing the explosion:

For now, though, the prevailing theory is that some mechanical component failed while the rocket was being fuelled. A strut snapping or weld breaking could cause sparks and release explosive gases. Combining those two things, according to my many years spent watching Mythbusters, tends to make things go bang.

Solving the mystery of what went wrong will be hugely important for SpaceX. The company has more launches scheduled for the end of the year, but none of those will go ahead until whatever problem caused this explosion can be fixed.

An object hitting the rocket isn’t totally impossible, but the videos showing flying objects around the rocket have been thoroughly debunked already. Since rocket launches are filmed from some miles away using a telephoto lens, a bug or a bird flying across the lens much closer to the camera will look suspiciously like a drone or projectile.

Chris Mills
Chris Mills News Editor

Chris Mills has been a news editor and writer for over 15 years, starting at Future Publishing, Gawker Media, and then BGR. He studied at McGill University in Quebec, Canada.