Need explanation: What kind of plane was that?

You know, usually, planes fly horizontally, at different altitudes, when seen from ground.

I however remember one occasion where the plane, and it sure looked like a plane with blinking lights, seemed to start out at the very horizon and just go up and up. It followed sky's arch, and as I continued watching it, it passed over me, then continued to the other side and just disappeared having done a full arch, on the other side of the horizon.

The size of the plane was not at all too distant. I could distinguish, I think 3-4 different lights, both white and red. It was dark so I didn't see the profile of the plane.

I've never seen anything like this either before or after, and was wondering, what was different about this plane?
 

WeedWhacker

Senior Member
You know, usually, planes fly horizontally, at different altitudes, when seen from ground.

I however remember one occasion where the plane, and it sure looked like a plane with blinking lights, seemed to start out at the very horizon and just go up and up. It followed sky's arch, and as I continued watching it, it passed over me, then continued to the other side and just disappeared having done a full arch, on the other side of the horizon.

The size of the plane was not at all too distant. I could distinguish, I think 3-4 different lights, both white and red. It was dark so I didn't see the profile of the plane.

I've never seen anything like this either before or after, and was wondering, what was different about this plane?

I believe what you witnessed was merely an optical illusion. (A trick of geometry, and viewer location).

Similar to how this airliner contrail (a horizontal, same altitude contrail) was mistaken for the contrail of a "missile launch":

http://contrailscience.com/los-angeles-missile-contrail-explained-in-pictures/
 

Pete Tar

Senior Member.
When you see a plane flying horizontally, from east to west, and you're facing it looking south, it flies across *your* horizon. Now imagine what someone who is under that plane facing east where it is coming from would see as it goes west - it would arc over their head, appearing to go 'up'.
 

deirdre

Senior Member.
You know, usually, planes fly horizontally, at different altitudes, when seen from ground.

I however remember one occasion where the plane, and it sure looked like a plane with blinking lights, seemed to start out at the very horizon and just go up and up. It followed sky's arch, and as I continued watching it, it passed over me, then continued to the other side and just disappeared having done a full arch, on the other side of the horizon.

The size of the plane was not at all too distant. I could distinguish, I think 3-4 different lights, both white and red. It was dark so I didn't see the profile of the plane.

I've never seen anything like this either before or after, and was wondering, what was different about this plane?
it just seems like its going up because at the horizon the lower part of the sky is hidden.

its harder to see in a photo but my clouds are doing that exact same thing right now. they appear to be 'going up' as they get closer to me (like a 45 degree angle.).

angle.JPG
 

deirdre

Senior Member.
now ive got more a stair effect. maybe easier to see. these arrowed clouds are all at the same height basically. (horizontally)

shark.png
 

Pete Tar

Senior Member.
As the earth is a sphere then strictly speaking a plane flying towards you from the horizon is lower than you and does gradually fly 'up' above your level as it approaches.
 
Hihihi, I liked the shark. OK so this actually happens, I just was directly on the plane and was facing it when it was coming towards me. that makes sense. oki this one is solved then. thank you
 
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