The bizarre object struck a mountain top with a massive bang in remote Zhangjiapan village, Shaanxi Province, China.
Residents who rushed to investigate found a burning crater and pieces of broken metal nearby, leading to speculate of a UFO or man-made space junk crashing to Earth.
The crater was just one metre by 50cms in size.
Metal parts, which police believe may have caused the crater were found by officers in three locations away from the crater.
One was a large metal ring which still had letters and numbers visible.
It reportedly struck the roof of a house.
Experts are now testing the metal parts to see if it can be established what they are.
The incident happened on December 12.
A video taken by an eyewitness has been uploaded to the internet.
Nothing can be seen inside the burning crater.
A local called Mr Zhang told HSW.cn that there was a “deep noise” from the sky at around 1pm on the day.
He said he then saw something rapidly falling towards the mountain.
He added: “It made a loud bang when it hit the ground. Then it started burning. The dry grass nearby was quickly set aflame.”
Speculation about the incident was rife online.
One commentator said: “The ring looks like the door of a UFO cabin.”
But another questioned if it was space junk caused by humans, saying: “Are they parts of Shenzhou 11 spacecraft?”
And a third said: “It probably came from a failed time traveller.”