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Is it a bird? Is it a plane? Cockfosters man hoping to solve UFO mystery
The truth is out there and one Cockfosters man who spotted an unusually bright light in the night sky is looking to find it.
Brian Nye, of Hamilton Road, has become increasingly keen to identify the spectacular dot after observing it through his living room window in recent weeks.
Suggestions range from the International Space Station to neighbouring planets but the 75-year-old has had no luck pinning down a definite identity for the mysterious space object.
He said: “I have been watching it every night for a couple of months or so now and I was wondering if anyone else has seen it.
“I imagine it is something like a satellite but I would be very happy if someone could identify it. It is so much brighter than any other stars and moves about the same speed as the Moon across the sky.
“It certainly isn’t a plane or anything as it is too slow and it must be at least ten times bigger than any other stars.”
Intrepid UFO enthusiasts at the Enfield Independent contacted the Royal Astronomical Society to try and get some clarification on the spacey subject.
Professional astronomer Robert Massey explained the object was most likely a nearby planet that is particularly visible at this time of year.
He said: “It sounds to me like Mr Nye could be seeing Venus. It appears to travel from the south west to the north west but it is in fact the earth that is rotating. It is spectacularly bright at the moment because it is in a position where the angle between Venus and the Sun is at its greatest.
“It is sufficiently light that if you know where to look you can even see it in daylight. It is unmistakeable, even through the light of London, and if you have a clear western horizon it will be the first thing you will see in the evening.”
Mr Massey suggested keen amateur astronomers to look out for a phenomenon coming up next month, the transit of Venus, which will not be seen again until 2117.
He said: “It is what happens when Venus moves directly between the Earth and the Sun. That is something I would certainly suggest people try and see. Best thing to do is find a local astronomy group and see what they are doing.”