Here is an article on Cracked.com about UFO sightings, they like to do lists of things and write tongue cheek. Some swearing. Entertaining!
Here is an article on Cracked.com about UFO sightings, they like to do lists of things and write tongue cheek. Some swearing. Entertaining!
#5 Chiles-Whitted - It has long been proposed this was a fireball sighting. It bears a remarkable resemblence to the Zond IV incident where people mistook re-entering space debris for a rocket ship with windows. (see Condon study)http://home.comcast.net/~tprinty/UFO/rocket.htm
#4 Green fireballs - There is no evidence presented that these were nothing more than bright fireballs that were green. The Peekskill fireball was recorded on video by over a dozen people and it showed green colors. The meteorite it produced demonstrated that Green fireballs are not so unusual to place them in some sort of special category. The Green fireball story became part of UFO lore because the AF was interested in them for a short period of time (fearing they were some sort of Soviet device). Once they determined they were random and probably just bright green meteors, they dropped interest in the subject.
#3 Gorman Dogfight - There were tests done with a lighted balloon and a TBM avenger in Cuba (which had a similar incident). They pretty much replicated what Gorman described. Ed Ruppelt in his book wrote that Gorman chased a lighted balloon.http://home.comcast.net/~tprinty/UFO/balloon.htm
#2 Washington DC sightings - I discussed this in another thread. The Condon study and Bordon-Vickers pretty much concluded it was anamolous propogation conditions that caused the radar returns. The remaining "lights in the sky" were just stars and other lights that were mistaken by various excited individuals.
#1 Valentich disappearance - The sole testimony this was a UFO event are the transmissions by the pilot, who died during the incident and disappeared without a trace. One can draw all sorts of conclusions about this but one can not use it as evidence of alien spaceships.
Absolutely. Many fireballs have a green colour- not because they contain copper, as some have suggested, but because they ionise the oxygen in the air with the heat of their passage, making it glow with a colour similar to the green colour observed in an aurora., which is also caused by ionised oxygen.#4 Green fireballs - There is no evidence presented that these were nothing more than bright fireballs that were green. The Peekskill fireball was recorded on video by over a dozen people and it showed green colors.
If there was some distance between said fireball and the plane it would appear to last longer then if was right next to the plane.Originally Posted by dirty_g
Again I'm not saying these are all aliens, BUT I do think the explanations we sometimes can give people who think every light in the sky is E.T can be pretty thin. I like to think that in nature there are just things we do not have a full understanding of yet and sometimes we just have to shrug our shoulders and say "What the heck was that?"
Interested in reading any responses.
Last edited by dirty_g; 2010-Aug-10 at 08:49 PM. Reason: to add more to the response
Meteors can last a lot longer than a few seconds. The Peekskill fireball was tens of seconds long so it is possible for a fireball to last 10-15 seconds.
Did you read what Dr. Hartmann wrote and what the witnesses stated? Maybe this picture will help. It is two drawings made by witnesses who saw the Zond IV incident.
Compare those with Chiles-Whitted's drawings. They are very similar.
BTW, it does not have to be space debris. All it takes is a meteor breaking up to give this effect. If you read Hartmann's discussion on the case in the Condon study http://files.ncas.org/condon/text/s6chap02.htm#S3 you might see this.
Meteors zip right past pilots. They appear close but are really far away. Also, a plane flying at hundreds of miles per hour flying past a relatively stationary light (i.e. a lit weather balloon) in the air can make the light appear to zip by.
If you read the Zond IV report, you will see this description;The UFO beside them apparently had windows which a meteor (fireball) does not.
They were looking at re-entering debris. If the witnesses in the Zond case could see windows in a fireball, so could the witnesses in the Chiles-Whitted case.It was shaped like a fat cigar, in my estimation. I was impressed that it seemed of considerable size, the size of one of our largest airplane fuselages, or larger...It appeared to have square-shaped windows...
The average time duration of the reports I saw was about 10-20 seconds in the report. No meteorites were found. Here are a sample of some of the UFO reports that were filed for this known source.
1. From what we could tell as it glided over the treetops, it was in my estimation at least 60 feet long and narrow. Cigar shaped, traveling about 20-25 feet in the air at about 20 mph. When we first saw it, my father recalled the meteor shower expected in 2 days, but as it went by, we realized it was too close to the ground, and definitely not fading. It also traveled in a steady straight line with respect to the horizon. The lights themselves were almost like white light. Some seemed stationary on the object while others streaked by with the continuous movement of the object, sort of like a trail along side. It was like a long skinny bus moving through the sky.
2. It first apeared like a large plane with a row of windows. I thought it was a plane atempting to land on the highway. As it grew closer i realized the object was to large to be a plane. In addition it had no flashing lights or landing lights. It was very long in length, possibly 200' to 500' feet. It had a row of what apeared to be windows yellow orange in color, with several lights in the front and rear the same color. It seamed to slow as it got closer to my truck, almost directly in front, about 1/4 mile away. It dipped down behind some trees, and dissapeared.
3. I noticed how black the sky was and a few stars and saw something shaped like a rectangle, like the size of the windows on this form that we use to fill out information. I was traveling about 70 MPH and saw this shaped traveling in the sky along side of the car. I thought it was a shooting star, but it didn't have a tail and it was airborne too long. It never disappeared in the sky!!!! As I slowed down, the object got closer and I was able to see it much clearer. This object had several windows that were seperated by some kind of bar and very bright lights. I was stunned by what I saw and pulled off the road to get a better look, but The craft disappeared.
These are all reports filed with the National UFO reporting center made by witnesses who claimed they know what they saw but what they saw was not exactly what they described. As best I could tell at the time (and still) was it was classified as a meteor and not re-entering space debris (as I originally suspected when this happened). Truly and unusual meteor. What it demonstrates is that there are bright fireballs that are capable of generating reports of cigars with lighted windows.
And how many times on this very forum have we seen examples of how the mind can play tricks on you by forming patterns in chaos when none exist? Or how people are just really bad at determining distance, angle, and speed of an object? This doesn't sound any different.Originally Posted by dirty_g
There are people that didn't report seeing Venus at dusk, but it was there shining all along, and they got confused by what they saw. Just because there was a difference on what was reported and what other explanations there might be, doesn't make the reporter right.Originally Posted by dirty_g
Another thing, ok so it's a metoer which looks like it has windows etc. Also it's far away as well not right next to them. How does it still apparently seem to stay next to them for 10 - 15 seconds. Even at a good distance away surley it would still zip by due to the sheer speed the damned thing is moving. These things move at (and this is pulled from a wiki answer so please feel free to correct me) 44 miles per second on average that is apparently (158,400 MPH) once they hit the Earths atmosphere. That is pretty damned fast and seems to me to be too fast to seem stationary even at a distance, plus would it not be falling in a downward arc and not apparently flying horizontally along? Please correct me on my quotes here again. I'm always eager to learn more.
The problem is the word "trained". People here that work and automatically think that person would be good at observing everything. It would be like saying a trained astronomer thought something underwater was strange and couldn't be explained by natural means, only because he/she might not have the training to identify what it was. It know it is a generalization, but it happens all the time with police officers as well.Originally Posted by dirty_g
I don't know about the speed, but downward arc would have to defined by the orientation of the pilot observing it.Originally Posted by dirty_g
Also, I found speeds that range from 11 to 72 km a second:
EDIT: A minimum speed for a meteor I have seen is about 7 miles/sec. At a distance of 70 miles, such a meteor would move at roughly 6 degrees per second (assuming my math is correct). Ten seconds of travel is only 60 degrees, which is a good chunk of the sky but not all of it. However, a meteor seen low in the sky is much farther away. They could be well over a 100 or more miles away, slowing the angular speed down further.
This all would give the impression the meteor was flying very slowly by them the same way various people on the ground thought the meteor was flying at extremely slow speeds in the example I gave. It would not matter if you were in a plane flying at a 150 mph or standing still. The angular speed would be the same and the apparent slow speed would be the same.
Last edited by astrophotographer; 2010-Aug-10 at 11:37 PM. Reason: Additional information/calculation.
The thing is, some people just don't want to believe the simple answers. Mundane and prosaic? Oh, sure. But you know, people do mistake Venus for an alien spacecraft. The evidence I've seen suggests that Jimmy Carter's reported UFO (and my understanding is that he never said it was aliens) was Venus, based on when and where he reportedly saw it. It sounds silly. However, the simple explanations usually do, even when they turn out to be true.
"Now everyone was giving her that kind of look UFOlogists get when they suddenly say, 'Hey, if you shade your eyes you can see it is just a flock of geese after all.'"
"You can't erase icing."
"I can't believe it doesn't work! I found it on the internet, man!"
(That links to a lengthy, but quite fascinating and very thorough, debunking)
Now, maybe that case reflects more on the M.A.F. training and perhaps a lack of knowledge of the limitations of their equipment, but let's face it, those things were on the ground, and they still thought they were UFO's. Venus is, at least, in the sky...
No, it was probably a smallish mass broken into even smaller parts during re-entry. What you see in a meteor fireball is usually the envelope of heated air around the object. This envelope of heated air glows brightly and can look quite a bit larger than it really is.
Here's the Peekskill fireball
Each of the component parts of this fireball was maybe the size of a refrigerator or smaller, but the glow was clearly visible from tens of kilometers away.
#5 Chiles-Whitted - The Zond IV comparison is interesting, and the drawings almost seal the deal. Except for a few problems.
Chiles and Whitted were decorated and respected pilots, not some random group of surprised individuals. Now I'm not saying pilots are infallible, but I'll take the word of a decorated and respected aviator like Chiles or Whitted over the word of a scientist with an axe to grind any day of the week. Has baut had a thread on flaws in the Condon report?
So what did happen? TOTAL observation time start to finish was estimated to be 10 - 15 seconds. During that time the pilots became aware of the object, determined that it was closing on them at high speed, made a hard left turn to avoid a collision, witnessed the object passing about 700 feet to the right of their DC-3, which was then being buffeted by turbulent air and in the last second or two Whitted observed the object enter into a steep climb. That doesn't sound like space debris to me.
The "apparent slow speed", which in this case was actually said to be apprently high speed was enough to cause the pilots to bank sharply to the left away from it.
Chiles sees an object to the right front of the plane. So far so good. He points it out to Whitted and speculates it is some new army jet. They continue to watch, but in just a few seconds the object now appears to be on a collison course with the DC-3. They bank hard to the left and the object goes by them at an apparent distance of 700 feet. They are buffeted by turbulence. Whitted looks back and observes the UFO as it goes up in a steep climb.
These guys had seen meteors many times during their careers. This was no meteor.
Meteors are a very variable phenomenon. Chiles and Whitted could not claim to have seen every possible combination of size, velocity and entry angle, and every possible way in which a meteor could disintegrate. In order to claim that they would probably need thousands of years of flying experience, not decades.
Of course it is totally impossible to estimate the distance of an unknown object unless you know the size (or the size of something behind it).They continue to watch, but in just a few seconds the object now appears to be on a collison course with the DC-3. They bank hard to the left and the object goes by them at an apparent distance of 700 feet.
Pilots are trained to take evasive action if they think something might hit them, for obvious reasons. Here's an experienced pilot taking evasive action to avoid a distant fireball.
In fact it was the re-entry of a Gorizont/Proton rocket body on 5/11/1990, tens of kilometers away.The accompanying Tornado pilot was so convinced that they were on collision course with the lights -- apparently nine were seen -- that he 'broke away' and took 'violent evasive action'. The formation of UFOs continued 'straight on course and shot off ahead at speed -- they were nearly supersonic.
Last edited by eburacum45; 2010-Aug-11 at 04:16 PM. Reason: accuracy
EDIT: You can find the original statements by the pilots here: http://www.nicap.org/docs/chiles/chiles480724docs2.htm
Note what Whitted stated: "We heard no noise nor felt any turbulence from the object"
Chiles added "There was no prop wash or rough air felt as it passed".
So, you can drop the idea there was turbulence.
2. You say that it could not be a meteor as an absolute and that you know they had seen fireballs before. What makes you so sure? There are a number of cases where pilots swerved to avoid meteors/fireballs (see Klass UFOs Identified and Randles danger in the air).
Last edited by astrophotographer; 2010-Aug-11 at 04:57 PM. Reason: Added link and more to #1
If I dismissed the cases, then I wouldn't even put them IN the bucket. Looking at the observations and explanations of KNOWN phenomena put it at the very, very bottom of it.Originally Posted by Torngarsuk
That's the main problem, we would love to dig deeper and find out exactly what a phenomenom is. But there are 2 major stumbling blocks:
1. We can only dig deeper with methods known to work on phenomenom that is known to us.
2. A sighting is gone, we can't go back and verify what was seen.
As part as 1. We have overwhelming evidence of phenomenom that are unrecognized or misidentified. So; the most common place to start is with stuff we know and compare.
As a pilot, your are required to make judgements continuously. It is not necessary, well at least it hasn't been necessary so far for me to know the exact distance or the exact size of a target before taking a prudent course of action.
This is a great example of one problem I have run into many times. Namely, getting the story straight. Too many times, I have seen details either added or omitted by people on both sides of the UFO fence. Here we go again, but first, since I am new to this forum, let me state that I am not a professional UFO investigator. I am not a believer in ET, at least not beyond the fanciful stories of Mr Spielberg.
I do believe there is life "out there", somewhere. The sheer scope of what astronomer's have found and continue to find makes it all but certain at least in my mind. On the other hand, for the exact same reason, I find it hard to believe we have been visited. However, if we were visited I suspect the visits would be very similar to the visits some of my pilot brethren have paid to our neighbors here on Earth. In other words, in the same way we can spy on our neighbors undetected, I suspect ET would employ similar tactics. Since ET would require vastly superior technolgy to reach us in the first place, any sightings would necessarily be spectacular and dramatic, at least that is my take.
My primary interest in UFOs springs from my interest in aviation. I do believe many sightings are conventional or at least semi-conventional aircraft. Before I rubber stamp this case and toss it into the bin, I would prefer to at least get all the information and read a competent analysis of the same if it exists.
The Chiles' statement to Mr Shannon was recorded more than a week after the event. Since this is not the first accounting, the most I can do here is try to track down earlier accounts. If they match up, then I would be interested to know the source of the turbulence addition.
As a pilot I place a lot of weight on the turbulence detail, if that detail is fabricated, I am deeply concerned.
Sorry, couldn't resist.
I see where Ms Randles first published in 1979. From the mid-eighties on, I have only revisited the UFO topic infrequently. That is probably why I haven't heard of her.
Since stumbling into this forum, I can safely say I have read more about UFOs in the last few days than I have in the last 10 years! The advent of digital cameras pretty much ended my interest in photo cases. Frankly, I'm at the point where I will need to see a saucer land on the White House lawn in person, before I become a believer.
You seem to have all the answers astrophotographer. Why do you spend time trying to debunk UFO sightings? Were you a believer at one time?