Volume 1 No. 7
Dec 4th 2001
Editor: Anthony James
UFO News is read in France, Finland, Italy, Australia, Canada, USA and the UK. If your country is not mentioned, please let me know.
I was proud to add another country to my list this week when subscribers from France wanted to receive this newsletter. If your country is not listed, please let me know. I have also been informed several times about 'spelling mistakes' in this newsletter. These are always checked before the newsletter goes out, but the point is:- other countries use the same words as we do in the UK but their spelling of the word is different, and if the report comes from, lets say America, and states COLOR rather than COLOUR, or CENTER rather than CENTRE, then I'll leave their version of spelling in that report for authenticity.
Anger and disbelief spread through the UFO community of America on Saturday night as 'space debris' was blamed for streaks of light which broke up into many balls of light, as it burnt up in the atmosphere high above the USA. Reports that a freak meteor shower was the cause didn't seem to grab many people's attention, but the idea that it was burning debris from a Russian rocket grabbed most people. The anger was because no-one had informed the public that a burning light show of either space debris from man made objects or space rocks was imminent. One angry American stated that:- "We weren't notified, Because "our" govt are selfish b*st*rds with all the information, and if we ever have a nuclear war - our first notification will be when we see the flash"!
(Picture's right). Pieces of a Proton rocket disintegrated in Earth's atmosphere this weekend, startling skywatchers in western Europe and at least seven US states.
Dec. 3, 2001: After the recent Leonid meteor storm sky watchers have been hungry for more shooting stars. This weekend they got one. On Saturday night, Dec. 1st, around 10:15 p.m. CST, a sensational fireball glided over the US Midwest. Automobile traffic stopped. Airline pilots peered in amazement through cockpit windows and emergency phone lines were jammed.
Airline passenger Rick Bordignon snapped these photos of the fireball from a window seat on US Airways Flight 612 from Philadelphia to Las Vegas. Rick Bordignon was in a commercial airliner when he saw them. "I was looking out the left window into the starry night when I noticed an approaching light," he recalled. "I was thinking... Hmmm, looks like a missile. But rather than raise a general sense of panic by yelling 'Incoming!,' I did the next best thing and got out my camera. "I snapped one picture but my camera is poor in low light. So I stopped to adjust the settings. When I looked out again I was amazed by what I saw: hundreds of objects with colorful glowing tails! So I snapped another one (inset) but it only picked up the brightest fragments -- and it was shaky, too. "The light plume [seemed to] go up and over our plane. After it was gone I looked around to judge the reactions of the other passengers -- and I swear everyone was sleeping! "When I got off the plane, I tracked down the pilot. He said every pilot in the Midwest saw it and it was the 'buzz of the frequencies.' They had never witnessed anything like it before."
Greg Bakker of Hull, Iowa, said "It was breathtaking!, My wife and I were driving home around 10:30pm CST when I saw the lights. I pulled the vehicle to the side of the road and we sat there awe-struck. There were about 8 objects, fiery yellow in color and slow-moving, much slower than any of the Leonid meteor I saw last month."
Indeed, what Bakker saw was no meteor. It was the remains of a Russian Proton rocket that had left Earth only 10 hours earlier carrying three navigation satellites to orbit. The satellites were deployed successfully, but pieces of the rocket fell back to Earth and disintegrated.
(Picture's right). Saturday's brilliant fireball seemed close at hand to many who saw it. In fact, it was at least 50 km higher than a high-flying jet airplane. Image credit: T. Phillips.
The eye-catching display had actually begun hours earlier. Alan Pickup, a satellite decay expert who works at the United Kingdom's Astronomy Technology Centre at the Royal Observatory in Edinburgh, explains: "The rocket, a Proton or 'SL-12', was launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakstan at 18:04 UT on Dec. 1st. An 800 kg metal casing from the fourth stage of the rocket was on its third orbit around Earth when it burned up in the atmosphere over southern England and France at about 22:35 UT."
Welshman Chris Evans was just stepping out of a restaurant in the French countryside when the casing soared overhead. "At first it was a single large fireball," says Evans, "but then it broke into about 30 or 40 smaller ones, like a giant fireworks display. It was absolutely magnificent." Other observers in the region noted a lingering trail and a "smoky halo" around the Full Moon.
This schematic diagram above, shows the two pieces of a Proton rocket that disintegrated in Earth's atmosphere on Dec. 1st and 2nd: the 800 kg 4th-stage casing and the 4200 kg 3rd-stage rocket. Image courtesy Bill Cooke, Marshall Space Flight Center.
Meanwhile, another even bigger piece of the rocket, its 4,200-kg third stage was decaying. The third stage hadn't dropped as fast as the casing had done. But finally, about six hours later, it too began to glow.
Shannon Rudine at the University of Texas McDonald Observatory spotted the rocket at 10:18 p.m. CST on Dec. 1st (0418 UT on Dec. 2nd). "When I first noticed it, it had already broken into dozens of slow-moving incandescent fragments. Several were brilliant white, each nearly as bright as the planet Jupiter," he recalled
The flaming debris continued from there Northeast over Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska, Missouri, Iowa and South Dakota -- dazzling thousands of onlookers along its path. Many witnesses saw the fireball because it moved in such a leisurely way across the sky. There was plenty of time to pull over and step out of the car, or call a friend to the window. What a change of pace from the Leonids! Genuine meteors zip across the sky in a few seconds or less. The difference is mainly speed: Manmade space debris returns to Earth travelling 7 or 8 km/s, while Leonid meteoroids strike the atmosphere at 72 km/s -- ten times faster.
Right. Fragile specks of comet dust, like this meteoroid disintegrate rapidly in Earth's atmosphere. Weighty rockets take more time. Furthermore, meteoroids, which are fluffy bits of comet dust, are mostly smaller than grains of sand and less massive than a gram. They disintegrate quickly. A Proton rocket, on the other hand, weighs thousands of kg. Such a massive object can burn and glow for a long time, especially when it skims almost horizontally through the atmosphere as this one did. Even so, some sky watchers missed the spectacle.
"I was sitting in my living room on Saturday night when I heard a thunderous boom," says Matt Hilger of David City, Nebraska. "It was loud, but not quite loud enough to pull me away from Sports Center on TV. Moments later, a friend phoned to tell me about the event, but," he lamented, "it was too late....Next time I hear a sonic boom late at night," he says, "I'll definitely look out the window."
Editor's note: After this story was published we received reports that sky watchers in New Mexico also saw the fireballs, adding to the list of US states already mentioned above.
Credits & Contacts
Author: Dr. Tony Phillips
Responsible NASA official: Ron Koczor
Production Editor: Dr. Tony Phillips
Curator: Bryan Walls
Media Relations: Steve Roy
The Science Directorate at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center sponsors the Science@NASA web sites. The mission of Science@NASA is to help the public understand how exciting NASA research is and to help NASA scientists fulfill their outreach responsibilities.
Web Links & More...
Orbital Debris -- Learn more about space junk -- decaying and otherwise -- from this excellent web site at NASA's Johnson Space Center.
Above: Astronomer and engineer Stan Nelson recorded a powerful radar echo from the decaying Proton rocket on Dec. 2nd at 0417 UT. The 217 MHz radar signal was transmitted by the Naval Space Surveillance Radar in Kickapoo, Texas. Nelson detected the echo using a ham radio located in Roswell, New Mexico.
Weekend Meteors -- (Science@NASA) A little more than a year ago, sky watchers in Texas saw another Proton rocket fragment decay. Read all about it!
[Please note that the images referred to can be found in the original article at: http://science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2001/ast03dec_1.htm - John @ UFOINFO]
Crash at Roswell: The Los Alamos Connection
A visit to the International UFO Museum at Roswell, N.M., would lead one to believe that the alleged crash of a UFO near that city in July 1947 was a true extraterrestrial event. At least six alternating videos and numerous displays and audio tapes explore testimony from eyewitnesses and strong circumstantial evidence of an alien crash, recovery and its cover-up by higher military authorities.
Several of the pilots at the Roswell Army Air Base at the time state on tape that within a few days of the incident they flew wreckage to Fort Worth Army Air Field, to Washington, D.C., and to Wright Field (Dayton, Ohio). Three flights were also made to Los Alamos, N.M. Of course these unscheduled flights said to be hauling crash debris do not prove that an extraterrestrial vehicle was recovered or covered up at Roswell. What the flights prove is that the crash was taken seriously by the Base commander at Roswell and his intelligence and air staffs at the local level.
Comes now a story out of Roswell and Los Alamos which may explain the three flights made from Roswell Army Air Field to Los Alamos on July 9, 1947, a few days after the crash. This story is from Carol Syska, former director of the UFO Museum at Roswell during 1999 and most of 2000.
Carol was a group secretary and division budget director at Los Alamos for almost 30 years. She retired in 1988 and moved to Roswell, N.M., not far from the town where she was born and raised. Carol first heard of UFOs when living in California in the early 1950s, resulting in an interest in UFOs in general. One day at Los Alamos, she read that a report containing information about UFOs was available in the Lab library. This sounded interesting to Carol. She ordered the report. She read this booklet, titled Project Blue Book, which contained some comments about wreckage from a crashed vehicle being sent for testing to Los Alamos.
At the time (1962), Carol worked at the Lab with the non-destructive Test Group (NDT). Her boss, a senior scientist, was head of NDT and had been with the Lab since the beginning of the Manhattan Project. If testing had been done on crash debris, Carol’s boss would know about the tests and the truth of the crash at Roswell.
Carol went to the man’s office and showed the report to him. She asked, "Is this true?"
Carol’s boss, in a business-like manner, replied, "What is the level of your security clearance?"
Carol said, "Sir, you know as well as I do what it is." (Carol told me that at the time she held a Q clearance. A Q clearance is a very high National Security clearance.)
Carol’s boss, after a pause, said, "Well, do you have the need to know?"
Carol said, "Guess not," and moved to the door.
Carol’s boss said, "Just a minute." After another pause, he added, "I would advise you to read everything you ever see about this subject."
That was the end of the conversation. Carol never discussed the matter again with her supervisor, the senior scientist, who is now deceased. But Carol believes the scientist gave her a hint of the truth.
Carol’s story continues. One afternoon in the early 1980s, Carol was in a car pool with three men going home, when one of them pointed to a bright light in the sky at about a 45-degree angle above the horizon. The sun had already set behind the mountains. "We all looked at the light, which wasn’t moving. All of a sudden, it dropped about 20 degrees and made a right-angle turn to the east and was gone in the blink of an eye. One fellow remarked, ‘I just got out of the Air Force three months ago, and we don’t have anything like that!’ We never told anyone about this incident," Carol commented. "We did not want to be made fun of."
After retirement from the Lab, Carol joined the staff of the Roswell UFO Museum. Upon Carol’s first visit to the UFO Museum, she saw a letter from the Secretary of the Air Force stating that at no time had the Roswell incident been mentioned in Project Blue Book. This letter proved to Carol that a government cover-up was taking place. Carol continued to read denials of a cover-up as the years went by.
One day, during the summer of 1998, a lady visiting the UFO Museum from Ohio told Carol that she had always wanted to visit Roswell since reading of the UFO crash years before. Knowing that the Roswell Incident was not public knowledge until the 1980s, Carol asked the lady what she had read that told her of the crash. The lady replied that she had read about the crash while working at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base (formerly Wright Field) in the early ’60s. Carol asked the lady what she had read. The lady replied, "It was in Project Blue Book, the very earliest edition."
This conversation between Carol and the lady from Ohio confirmed Carol’s belief in a government cover-up about the Roswell Incident. Why? Because the Incident was inexplicably removed from subsequent editions of Blue Book.
Carol’s story raises serious questions for students of UFOs and the Roswell Incident. Researchers have long believed that Los Alamos may have played a greater role in the Incident than is presently understood.
Some of these questions might be:
1. Why would military leaders send a pile of weather balloon parts, radar targets and American-made crash dummies for testing to one of the most sophisticated laboratories in the world for evaluation?
2. Why would it require a Q clearance to review these tests plus a need to know, if only weather balloon parts were sent to the Lab?
3. What was the true purpose of the three flights made from Roswell Army Air Field to Los Alamos on July 9, 1947?
4. Were later editions of Project Blue Book altered to conceal the fact that crash wreckage was sent from Roswell to the Lab?
5. And, finally, the ultimate question: Did an alien space craft crash near Roswell in 1947, and was it fabricated on another planet, and was the event kept secret from the public ever since?
As I’ve suggested, a visit to the UFO Museum at Roswell could be an unforgettable experience for those with eyes to see and ears to hear. The museum is open seven days a week, and admission is free.
By James Parsons
James Parsons was an Air Force navigator in the 1950s. He is an art appraiser in Taos, New Mexico, USA and a member of two UFO study groups.
(The original photograph of this 'disc' was featured in the book 'Project Blue Book' under case No:46, although the reproduction is not as clear as the poster sized one in Mr J Parsons photograph above. Ed)
[The original article with the image can be found at: http://earthstar.tripod.com/TSB_dir/LosAlamos.html (John @ UFOINFO]
TORONTO - Nick Balaskas writes, "The metallurgy building just south of the University of Toronto's Convocation Hall houses some very unusual metals known as "shape memory alloys." These unusual metals can be severely deformed into various shapes and then when heated will return to their original shapes. These very specialised metals are now being studied at more metallurgy research labs. Some of these same metals and their properties were demonstrated to an amazed public at a recent University of Toronto open house. One application of such metal has already been used in eyeglass frames which return to their original shape (thanks to Roswell UFO crash technology)? After one sits on them by accident. Thanks to George Filer. Filers Files
HOW WINSTON CHURCHILL CHASED FLYING SAUCERS
LONDON UK - The Observer (National Newspaper). Scientists and generals drew up a top secret report on Unidentified Flying Objects and then decided to cover up a wave of rumours and sightings that swept Britain in the 1950s. The Ministry of Defence denied the existence of the UFO report, written in 1951 and later used to brief Prime Minister Winston Churchill, for almost 50 years. But UFO historians Andy Robert and David Clarke have recently unearthed the six-page document as they researched a book on UFOs and the Cold War. The report has been a 'Holy Grail' of British 'Ufology' and details the conclusions of a shadowy panel called the Working Party on Flying Saucers. This group was the idea of Sir Henry Tizard, one of Churchill's most trusted scientific advisers during World War II and a key figure behind the development of radar.
But anyone looking for an elusive 'X-file' that confirms the existence of aliens will be disappointed. The report concludes that all sightings were explainable by natural events, such as the weather or meteors, or were of normal aircraft. But it does speak volumes about the scale of paranoia in Britain at the start of the Cold War. From 1950 onwards, hundreds of UFO sightings were reported across Britain and were regular front-page news. Leading public figures, including Lord Louis Mountbatten, came out with their belief that aliens were visiting Earth. The phenomenon terrified the top brass on both sides of the Atlantic. Generals were worried that reports of flying saucers could be used by the Soviet Union to disguise an earthly attack or that the sightings were giving the Russians a clue that Britain's radar network was faulty and easy to penetrate - which was actually true but unknown within the Soviet bloc. 'This was a time of great paranoia and fear. The Government took a decision to throw a blanket over the UFO scare and say as little as possible about it,' said Clarke. 'There certainly was a cover-up, but what was being covered up was Cold War paranoia and our fears over our radar system.
It was nothing to do with aliens. Despite the official silence, the UFO scares did not die down. In 1952, Churchill fired off a memo to his advisers in the wake of fresh UFO sightings in the United States. "What does all this stuff about flying saucers amount to? What can it mean? What is the truth?" Churchill wrote. Tizard's report was then used to brief the Prime Minister on the perceived lack of real threat from UFO's in August of that year. A few months later an order went out expressly banning all RAF personnel from discussing sightings with anyone not from the military. In trying to underplay the sightings, Britain was following the lead of the United States, which had conducted several studies into its own UFO sightings and adopted a policy of official secrecy. When the British report was presented, a top CIA scientist travelled over to the meeting to make sure the conclusions of America's closest ally fitted in. The London Observer. Published: 21/10/01
China Moves Ahead With Manned Moon Landing Plans
China is forging ahead with a mission to send a man to the moon as it prepares for manned space flights by 2005, state media reported on Friday.The moon mission is part of Beijing's ambitious plans to build a space industry. The China Daily stated Mr Sun Laiyan was Vice Director of the China National Space Administration. However, Mr Sun, speaking at an event to mark the first anniversary of a cabinet 'white paper' detailing China's space plans gave no details or timetable for the mission, according to the newspaper.
A leading Chinese scientist said Beijing, which sent a monkey, a dog, a rabbit and snails into orbit in January aboard its second unmanned 'Shenzhou' spacecraft, needed further unmanned flights before it could send an astronaut into space. "We must be sure that the astronauts are 100 percent safe in outer space after launching," said Liang Sili of the Chinese Academy of Sciences.
China will launch Moon probes from Long March carrier rockets in collaboration with the European Space Agency, the official Xinhua news agency said, citing plans made public last year. It said China hoped to explore the moon in the next decade or longer. Chinese leaders are eager for the pride and prestige that would come if China joined the United States and former Soviet Union as the only countries to put a person into space.
In 1999, China announced a four-step manned space-flight plan, with the aim of establishing a space station served by shuttle-style vehicles.
NASA FINDS PLANET WITH ATMOSPHERE
27 November 2001
Astronomers using the Hubble Space Telescope have detected the atmosphere of a planet circling a Sun-like star 150 light years away. Their ground breaking discovery shows it is possible to measure the chemical make-up of distant planets, and to search for chemical markers of life far beyond Earth.
Full story at Alien Atmospheres - http://science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2001/ast27nov_1.htm
SAN LUIS TLATILCO
Sixteen metallic-white objects were sighted at 9:32 AM on November 21, 2001 as they flew over in the municipality of Naucalpan in the state of Mexico. Fourteen of these objects remained close together while the remaining two stayed apart. The sighting lasted 15 minutes enabling Mrs. Guillermina Vargas and her son to see the objects through binoculars, record them on video, and even count them one by one from their own home. Antena Vórtice has in its possession a three minute video of these objects. In an interview, Mrs. Vargas stated: "the objects moved slowly toward the centre of Mexico City. What saddens me the most is having not been aware of the moment in which they disappeared." Thanks to Joe Trainor and Scott Corrales
LOTS OF SIGHTINGS OVER ARIZONA THROUGH OCT/NOV
TEMPE, PHOENIX USA
On 9/30/2001 at 01:30 Three friends of mine and I were sitting in the back yard of a friend's house when we saw what at first appeared to be a shooting star. it became clear very quick that this was not a shooting star. we quickly moved to a place where we could get a better view. the shape of the object almost seemed missile like, it was gliding in a straight line and appeared to be slowly falling down. it was similar to a trail of lights. two objects exactly like it split off of it and started to also fall. I seem to recall a whizzing sound and so does one other person I was with, however, at least one of the other people who saw it that was standing next to me said they didn't hear anything. anyway, it disappeared behind a tree so we ran to the front yard to see if we could see it hit something, but it then disappeared into the horizon. very soon after we saw an out of the ordinary amount of non commercial aircraft. In the wake of the events on the 11th we all were pretty sure this was it and we were all about ready to die. eh. I'm glad everyone seems to be okay. we called our local CBS affiliate and they said that other people had reported seeing the same thing but there still hasn't been a report.
Triangle shaped craft spotted flying west to east over mid town Phoenix on 10/10/01 at 22:00 hours 4 light dim making no sound. On October 10 at 22:00 hours I was sitting in my court yard in mid town Phoenix AZ. I was looking to the west up at the stars. An object moving from the Southwest to the Northeast caught my attention. It was a clear night. As the craft got closer I could see for light one in front, one in the center, two in the back the light were a dim orange/yellow. The craft made no sound, triangle shape. I could make out the shape against the lighter night sky the shape was dark. There was a visual distortion around the craft.
CLUSTER UFO OVER PHOENIX, USA
There was a mass sighting in Phoenix. I was at work on Friday 10-12-01 at 6:30 PM I video taped 6 black UFO's moving slow over down town Phoenix AZ. I video taped the cluster of UFO's for about 2 min. I now have a few people that have called me. But no one at my work wants to talk about it.
On Oct.19 2001, 20:45pm Phoenix Az, I was sitting out side of the shop I work at and was having a cig. It was about 8:45pm, I was waiting to close the shop at 9:00pm. Watching the sky which was hazy but clear enough to see stars. There was a light layer of clouds coming from the west out of California. I suddenly caught a glimpse of something flying over my head. I looked up to see a group of three reddish/orange, some what bright yet fuzzy looking lights flying at what seemed to be couple of hundred feet above my head but completely silent. It travel at a very fast speed from east to west in the direction of Luke Air Force Base. It travel from above my head all the way across the sky to disappear over single story house across the 30 foot wide alley behind my shop. This took a total of about 6 to 8 seconds, just long enough for me to jump out of the chair I was leaning back in and shouted what the hell is it.
Dear Sir, I would like to file a sighting report I had last night, December 2nd at Point Pleasant, Wandsworth SW18, London. I was driving out of my apartment block at 10.35pm heading S/SE when I noticed a strange long cloud moving swiftly in the sky about 30-40 degrees from the horizon. I thought it was an aircraft, but it was too long and the colours were wrong. The cloud was like a tail of a comet, long and glowing. I stopped the car and got out to have a better look, I could make out about 4 or 5 points of lights within the streak, all travelling in the same direction with no sound and quite fast. I lost it when it got behind some houses, all in about 20-30 seconds. The sky was clear and stars could be seen. (Could have been the part of a rocket: Ed). Steven Lee London
A BUCHAN grandfather is certain there is something out there after capturing what he believes to be several UFOs on film. George Sykes, 64, who lives near Cruden Bay, spotted two brightly-lit globes hovering in the sky one evening and grabbed his camcorder to film them. He said: "It was about 9.45pm and I was letting the dog out before we went to bed when I saw the objects in the sky. I grabbed my binoculars from on top of the washing machine and couldn't believe my eyes. "I shouted for my wife, Isobel, to come and see and also got my neighbour as well. Then I got the camcorder out and was zooming in and out to try and get a good picture. "It was unbelievable, to say it was out of this world is right." The retired Woodend Hospital worker said he was treated to the sighting, which happened in March 2001, for around 10 minutes before the objects faded away. "They were two brightly-lit globes in the sky. One was bigger than the other and the bigger one was spinning really fast with all these marvellous colours shining from them. "It was fantastic to see it. The best way I can describe it is that it was like the effects of a mirrorball shining at a dance." Mr Sykes said he is now certain that we are not alone in the universe. "I have never been a disbeliever about this kind of thing but now I'm totally convinced. There is no way it was a helicopter, plane or car. One of them was about the size of St James's Church and they stayed in the same place. It was definitely something from another planet. "I have five grandchildren and when they come to visit they always ask to see the video of the UFO."
Cannock, Midlands, UK
12th October at 20:30pm. I was walking through the town on my way to an Indian restaurant with some friends from work, I glanced up as it was a fairly clear night as I enjoy looking at the stars, then this triangular shaped object fairly high up raced across the sky from north west to south east. It was a metallic object as the bottom appeared to reflect the amber of all the street lights. It was also completely silent. By the time I realised that this was no ordinary object and went to tell my friends it had disappeared from view it.
Kevin Yates reports that on October 29, 2001, "My wife and I had pulled off our drive in Bishops Itchington at 6:45 PM, when we both looked up and saw a diamond formation of four bright yellow lights in the shape of a diamond with a red one on the top to the left. It moved very slowly emitting no noise, we followed it for about 10 miles to Leamington Spa. Other people along the way appeared to have seen it as well as cars had stopped by the side of the road. In the time we witnessed it, for 25 minutes it changed shape to two bright yellow lights. They also changed shape from being vertical to horizontal. When we got off the main road in Leamington Spa by the police building, I noticed another collection of the same diamond shaped lights coming from Leamington and heading towards Stratford Upon Avon. It was truly a memorable day.
This Issues Selected Picture
Mexican Police photograph over Mexican Freeway.
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