ALSACAT -> Home 

Cette page en françaisCliquez!


ALSACAT is my comprehensive catalog of UFO sighting reports in Alsace, the region is the North-East of France, whether they are "explained" or "unexplained".

The ALSACAT catalog is made of case files with a case number, summary, quantitative information (date, location, number of witnesses...), classifications, all sources mentioning the case with their references, a discussion of the case in order to evaluate its causes, and a history of the changes made to the file. A general index and thematic sub-catalogs give access to these Alsatian case files.

Previous case Next case >

Case of Magstatt-le-Bas, on July 29, 2017:

Case number:



Someone reported to the UFO website OVNI-France an observation made the day before, July 29, 2017, in the Haut-Rhin.

The person said that that when returning from a party with friends, on the road between Uffheim and Magstatt-le-Bas, around 11:28 p.m., he or she saw "like a fleme [sic] in the sky."

Arrived home and still seeing "this glow" which had lost in brightness, the witness took his/her "iphone" and filmed the thing because it seemed "bizare" to him/her. Zooming in, the witness saw "a bright red circle" on the phone screen. The glow faded out just after the witness stopped filming. The duration of the observation is given as 5 minutes.


Temporal data:

Date: July 29, 2017
Time: 11:28 p.m.
Duration: 5 minutes.
First known report date: July 30, 2017
Reporting delay: 1 day.

Geographical data:

Department: Haut-Rhin
City: Magstatt-le-Bas
Place: From the road between Uffheim and Magstatt-le-Bas then from home, UFO in the sky.
Latitude: 47.640
Longitude: 7.414
Uncertainty radius: 1.5 km

Witnesses data:

Number of alleged witnesses: 1
Number of known witnesses: 1
Number of named witnesses: 0
Witness(es) ages: Not reported. Adult.
Witness(es) types: Not reported. Resident.

Ufology data:

Reporting channel: By the Web to the "OVNI" UFO Website.
Type of location: From the road then from home, UFO in the sky.
Visibility conditions: Night
UFO observed: Yes
UFO arrival observed: ?
UFO departure observed: Yes
Entities: No
Photographs: Yes. Video.
Sketch(s) by witness(es): No.
Sketch(es) approved by witness(es): No.
Witness(es) feelings: Puzzled.
Witnesses interpretation: ?


Hynek: NL
ALSACAT: Probable Chinese lantern.




07/29/2017 - (Dep.68) - Gleam - luminous circle

Date: 07/29/2017

Department: 68 (Haut-Rhin)

Localization: Magstatt le bas

Hour: 11:28 p.m.

Numbers [sic] of witnesses: 1 persons [sic]

Type of observation: NL: Nocturnal Lights

Approximate duration of observation: 5 minutes

What was seen: Gleam - luminous circle

Description of the facts:

Yesterday evening, coming home from a party with friends, on the road between Uffheim and Magstatt le bas I see as a like a fleme [sic] in in the sky.

Arriving at home I still see this glow but it lost brightness so I take my iphone and I start filming, already a glow like this seems weird to me and when I filmed I zoomed in and I saw a bright red circle on my screen, the glow dissipated then just after stopping filming



The video shows exactly what can appear when filming a Chinese lantern. And the report contains absolutely nothing that would suggest this explanation should be discarded.

Chinese lantern.

Above: a Chinese lantern.

The first "false UFOs" caused by Chinese lanterns that I identified were in the United States during the airship wave of 1896-1897, it also happened during the 1954 French "saucers" flap, including in Alsace (Example), it happened during the wave of 1973 in the United States (Example), etc. As there are years-long gaps in their use, some ufologists, too many ufologists, and of course the witnesses, forget them as a possible cause for UFO sightings.

In the years 2005 to 2018 (when I write these lines - in Alsace, most so-called "UFO sightings" that were reported were actually caused by Chinese lanterns.


Probable Chinese lantern.

Sources references:

* = Source is available to me.
? = Source I am told about but could not get so far. Help needed.

File history:


Main author: Patrick Gross
Contributors: None
Reviewers: None
Editor: Patrick Gross

Changes history:

Version: Create/changed by: Date: Description:
0.1 Patrick Gross January 15, 2018 Creation, [ofe1].
1.0 Patrick Gross January 15, 2018 First published.

Valid XHTML 1.0 Strict

 Feedback  |  Top  |  Back  |  Forward  |  Map  |  List |  Home
This page was last updated on January 15, 2018.