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Watch a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket create a stunning twilight phenomenon as it blasts through Earth’s atmosphere

Published Apr 5th, 2022 2:22AM EDT
falcon 9 spacex reusable rocket booster
Image: AP Photo/John Raoux

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There are few things as exciting as watching a rocket launch into outer space. Space may have lost its luster for many over the years, but SpaceX continues to deliver some exciting and delightfully beautiful displays. If you needed a reminder of just how epic rocket launches can be, check out this video of a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket creating a beautiful twilight phenomenon as it takes off.

Check out this video of a SpaceX Falcon 9 launching

The video comes courtesy of Reddit user u/_bittu_, though you can also see a longer more detailed version of the twilight phenomenon in the timelapse video included above. Essentially, what you’re seeing is the SpaceX Falcon 9 taking off and then breaking through the clouds. The white orbs seen whizzing past are other aircraft, like planes, that are moving through the area.

It’s a really striking shot. And, space fans can appreciate the full spectacle as the Falcon 9 rocket takes off into the sky. We’ve also seen similar shots in the intro material that SpaceX shows during its latest launches. The space-focused company actually just launched another Falcon 9 over the weekend, and you can check out the full details of that launch on the SpaceX YouTube.

Because space agencies launch rockets at different times of the day, twilight phenomenon aren’t a guaranteed experience.

What is the twilight phenomenon?

spacex launch
SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket preparing for launch. Image source: SpaceX

Twilight phenomenon like the one in the video can often be seen when rockets take off in the early morning hours. You can only experience the visual treat when a rocket or missile takes off in the twilight hours. At this time, the rays of sunlight hit the exhaust particles from the rocket as they expand. This creates the beautiful color of display that you can see in the above video.

You can see the twilight phenomenon anytime a rocket or missile launches an hour before sunrise or after sunset. It usually occurs when the rocket moves from a darker area into the upper atmosphere. This is where the rays of light are still present, creating the display that so many love.

Because the display is so extravagant, many have often surmised that the rocket or missile must have malfunctioned. They believed the display was made by fuel or other particles leaking out. However, no reports have ever been made of a malfunctioning rocket or missile creating the twilight phenomenon.

Josh Hawkins has been writing for over a decade, covering science, gaming, and tech culture. He also is a top-rated product reviewer with experience in extensively researched product comparisons, headphones, and gaming devices.

Whenever he isn’t busy writing about tech or gadgets, he can usually be found enjoying a new world in a video game, or tinkering with something on his computer.

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