Every year in The Netherlands 20 to100 crop circles mysteriously appear in wheat fields. They remain a mystery, but new research, reported in the scientific journal Physiologia Plantarum, may help clear up their origins.

Dr. Eltjo Haselhoff is the author of the article. He?s a physicist and also a member of the Dutch Center for Crop Circle Studies (DCCCS), who looks into the phenomenon in his spare time.

Haselhoff has developed his theories after sampling crops from many of the circles and talking to the few eyewitnesses who have seen a crop circle created. ?There aren?t many eyewitness accounts,? he admits, ?but that?s not surprising. Most people feel very uncomfortable telling these stories. But according to them there are two components involved when a crop circle is made, and those are a ball of light floating through the air and a tremendous sort of whirlwind which seems to do the flattening. They also say that it only takes seconds to produce the formation.?

A controversial video from the U.K. shows a crop circle being created in seconds by several small, white balls of light. Last year, our science reporter, Linda Howe, was with a group of observers in England when she saw similar lights hovering over a crop circle.

?It?s possible that they are all man-made,? says Dr. Haselhoff. ?It?s the most logical explanation but it doesn?t answer all the questions. I am convinced that many of the formations I have visited were not man-made in the sense that they weren?t flattened by mechanical means, using planks and ropes and pushing down the crops.?

Fellow researcher Robert Boerman also agrees that the circles can?t all have been made by conventional means. ?There is rock hard scientific evidence to prove that a lot of the circles are not man-made,? he says.

Boerman hopes to be able to reproduce the technology and create a crop circle. ?I have a theory and looking at the evidence I think – I hope – that we can create a crop circle of our own in the very near future. With the right equipment we will be able to create a circle in England, Canada or the U.S. from home, here in The Netherlands. We don?t know who is creating them now, but if we can create our own crop circle then we can understand how it works.?

?In several of the crop circles that have been investigated,? says Haselhoff, ?we?ve found physical anomalies in the plants, which correspond perfectly with the hypothesis that the crop is heated by a small spherical heat source which is this ball of light. It?s an effect which makes part of the stems of the plants expand, very similar to the mercury in a thermometer, if it?s warm it expands and gets longer. This expansion of the stems is much stronger in the center but decreases gradually towards the edge of the circle.

?It matches perfectly the distribution of, for example, the light from a bulb in a dark room. Right beneath the light bulb the light is very strong but towards the edges of theroom it gets darker. And this distribution, which is very well known, matches perfectly the measurements we?ve found in the field on several occasions.

?We need to perform more solid research. It?s too easy to say it?s all man-made. We have demonstrated biological changes to the crops and radioactivity has even been discovered. We don?t know what?s going on but nevertheless these modified crops enter our food chain because the farmers just harvest the crops like all the rest. Nobody really knows what?s going on and that?s a frightening thought sometimes. Just think about that the next time you eat a slice of bread.?

Unknowncountry.com Opinion: If the circles are being created in secret by people with a command of unknown technologies, these people do not have the better interests of mankind at heart. They mean to create the impression that aliens are here when they are not, in other words, to mount a massive deception for obscure and possibly dangerous reasons. Such people need to be found out and their motives revealed, on behalf of the public good.

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