Science is the backbone of the western world, with many people relying on it to give them all of the answers. Scientists are some of the most trusted people in western culture, with their word being good enough for the majority of us. After all, we are not likely to read a scientific study by ourselves, so we trust that the findings are accurate and thoroughly checked. This dependence we have on science leaves us helpless when they don’t have the answers. After all, scientists are people just like us. They make mistakes and incorrect assumptions.
In these eight cases, scientists really don’t seem to have any idea what’s going on.
1. Hessdalen Lights (Above)
Strange light patterns have been witnessed over Norway’s Hessdalen valley since the 1940s, but no scientific explanation has been given. They appear up to 20 times per year, and became a popular scientific mystery when their frequency increased in the mid-1980s. Although scientists have been studying them, all hypothesis associated with the lights have yet to be proven. A likely suspect is that of a UFO, whether manmade or extraterrestrial.
2. Ball Lightning
Ball lightning is something that has perplexed scientists for a long time. There have been enough sightings of the phenomenon to discount claims of this being imagined or falsified, but science is no closer to finding the reason for it. Ball lightning is just what the name suggests; a ball of lightning in the sky. The ball can last up to a minute in the air and can even pass through metal, wood and other structures. Scientists have only theories, with the most popular being John Abrahamson’s vaporized silicon hypothesis.
3. The Hum
Anywhere from 2-11% of the population of multiple populated areas of the world are experiencing a constant humming sound around them at all times. Not everyone can hear the hum, but those who can are plagued by a constant low-pitched hum that only gets worse when things get quieter. Understandably, those who hear this sound suffer from headaches, insomnia, nausea, and other psychological effects. Some have even committed suicide to rid themselves of the sound. Scientists point to noise pollution, but this hum seems to be caused by something much more subliminal.
4. Star Jelly
When meteors fall to Earth, it is expected that there will be some foreign debris that will come with it. One of the common byproducts of a meteor shower is called star jelly (or star snot and other gunk related star names. This sticky, jelly-like substance has been found at multiple sites, but reportedly falls apart after being handled. This is why scientists have not been able to study the substance. One of the biggest patches was found in Philadelphia in 1950, where four police officers found a six-foot long patch of the jelly. As far as an explanation, many scientists dismiss the substance. Any other explanation is usually confined to an animal or plant found on Earth. In other words, they have no idea what it is.
5. Rolling Clouds
Sightings of these Arcus clouds are extremely rare and vary on location. The cloud is characterized by a long tubular shape and often appear lower to the ground than other clouds. They are also accompanied by extreme winds in most cases. Because of the sporadic nature of the clouds, it is hard to predict their locations. Because it’s impossible to tell where and when they’ll appear, scientists have been unable to study the cause of such clouds, and the conditions in which they are possible.
6. Synchronized Fireflies
In the Great Smokey Mountains of Tennessee, there is a rare species of beetles known as Synchronous Fireflies. These fireflies are unique in their ability to synchronize their blinking lights with each other. Scientists do not know how they are able to achieve such synchronization, and it’s only theorized as to what the evolutionary benefit of such synchronization is to the species.
7. Earthquake Rainbows
Earthquake lights refer to the rainbow of light that is seen to appear in the sky during and sometimes before an earthquake. These strange and yet unexplained lights have been recorded as occurring as early as 373 BC. Scientists offer no definitive explanation, though they do have hypothesis as to why they are occurring. One of the more convincing hypotheses is that the earth releases a gas during an earthquake, which reacts with the air to create this color change. Another is that the magnetic field of the Earth is altered when there is an earthquake. Regardless, there is no consensus and these lights remain a natural mystery.
8. Spontaneous Human Combustion
Spontaneous human combustion is exactly what it sounds like and is probably the most bizarre phenomenon on this list. As early as 1673, cases have been reported of people bursting into flames with no external cause. Science has pointed the finger at obesity, alcoholism and cigarette smoking among others, but no chemical reaction has been detailed to explain these combustions.
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