Balls of light: The questionable science of crop circles

Francesco Grassi, Claudio Cocheo, Paolo Russo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Three papers published by W. C. Levengood (1994), W. C. Levengood and N. P. Talbott (1999) and by E. H. Haselhoff (2001) suggested the involvement of some kind of electromagnetic radiation during the creation of crop circles. Here we discuss the methods and conclusions of the three articles, pointing out the misrepresentation of the experimental protocols, the misleading application of statistical procedures, the arbitrary discarding of unwanted results and the weakness of the proposed physical model to the suggested hypothesis. In particular, we show that Haselhoff's conclusions are unsubstantiated and do not prove the involvement of an electromagnetic radiation source in the creation event.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)159-170
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Scientific Exploration
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2005


  • Balls of light
  • Crop circles
  • Electromagnetic radiation
  • Statistical models
  • Stem node elongation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Engineering(all)

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  • Cite this

    Grassi, F., Cocheo, C., & Russo, P. (2005). Balls of light: The questionable science of crop circles. Journal of Scientific Exploration, 19(2), 159-170.