- The videos and photos of the red sky flooded the Chinese internet
- Many opined that there was an "out-of-control fire" raging nearby
- A similar phenomenon of red sky was reported in many countries in 1770
The Chinese port city of Zhoushan witnessed a unique phenomenon last Saturday when the sky turned scarlet. The videos and photos of the red sky soon flooded the Chinese internet attracting more than 150 million views as of Sunday night.
While a few feared that this was caused by an "out-of-control fire" raging nearby, others simply assumed it was "heralding the apocalypse," according to LADbible.
"I have never seen anything like this before. It really amazes me that the sky can even turn red," a user commented. Another added: "It is a blood-red color, that doesn't look good at all."
Another commented with a grim prediction: "There's gonna be an earthquake in seven days, it's not normal to see the sky turning all red."
However, experts have come up with an explanation for the rare phenomenon. An article that appeared in Chinese-state-backed Global Times, quoting experts, said the red sky in the city in East China's Zhejiang Province was caused by the refraction and scattering of light, most likely from ship lights in the port.
"It was foggy and cloudy in Zhoushan on Saturday and it was drizzling at the time of the red sky, which might have been caused by the reflection of light from the low-level clouds," a staff of the Zhoushan Meteorological Bureau told the news outlet.
He added that the good weather conditions meant that more water in the atmosphere forms aerosols, which refract and scatter the light of fishing boats to create the red sky effect.
The report also quashed theories of "massive solar activity" quoting an expert from the space physics research team of the China University of Geosciences in Wuhan.
According to the expert, the solar and geomagnetic activity Saturday was calm, and there were no significant anomalies in solar activity. This basically ruled out the possibility that the geomagnetic and solar activity turned the sky red in Zhoushan, he added.
The phenomenon of solar activity was highlighted after some netizens said a similar red sky had appeared for over nine days in many countries in 1770. An article by Japanese scientists published recently claimed that the phenomenon was caused by a massive solar activity.