Originally posted by Gazrok
Ed Ruppelt himself (head of Project Bluebook at the time, now a UFOlogist and author whose gone on record that Bluebook was a coverup) was actually likely involved somewhat in this case, as the paper points out.
Originally posted by mblahnikluver
I wonder what they wanted or were doing there.
Originally posted by Gazrok
Came across this... This was a report that was created to debunk the sightings and put forward the "temperature inversion" theory as the explanation.
..The funny part of this of course, is that the government later flip-flopped on this, and even admitted that this simply wouldn't explain the sightings by their own pilots (as such inversions would not be seen VISUALLY), and it's status in Bluebook was again changed to "unknown".
"I have interviewed five of the CAA personnel involved in this case and four of the commercial airline pilots involved, I have checked the radiosonde data against well-known radar propagation relations, and I have studied the CAA report subsequently published on this event. Only an extremely lengthy discussion would suffice to present the serious objections to the official explanation that this complex sighting was a result of anomalous radar propagation and refractive anomalies of the mirage type. The refractive index gradient, even after making allowance for instrument lag, was far too low for "ducting" or "trapping" to occur; and, still more significant, the angular elevations of the visually observed unknowns lay far too high for radar- ducting under even the most extreme conditions that have ever been observed in the atmosphere. Some of the pilots, directed by ground radar to look for any airborne objects, saw them at altitudes well above their own flight altitudes, and these objects were maneuvering in wholly unconventional manner. One crew saw one of the unknown luminous objects shoot straight up, and simultaneously the object' s return disappeared from the ARTC scope being watched by the CAA radar operators. The official suggestion that the same weak (1.7"C) low-level "inversion" that was blamed for the radar ducting could produce miraging effects was quantitatively absurd, even if one overlooks the airline-pilot sightings and deals only with the reported ground-visual sightings".
Dr. James E. McDonald, Senior Physicist at the Institute of Atmospheric Physics at the University of Arizona
James McDonald, Statement on UFOs to U.S. House Committee on Science and Aeronatics, 1968 Symposium on UFOs
Washington, DC Area, July 19/20, 1952.
A few minutes later it got even more interesting. One blip track showed an abrupt 90-degree turn, something WE could not do. Then, when the sweep came around, another object suddenly reversed, its new blip "blossoming" on top of the one it had just made. From over 100 mph, the mystery object had stopped dead and completely reversed its direction, all in about 5-seconds.
On top of that, a startling report came in from the tower. Operator Joe Zacko had been watching the ASR scope, built to track high-speed objects. One of the objects was traveling at a fantastic rate across the screen and was racing over Andrews Field toward Riverdale. Zacko called Cocklin and they both computed the speed, 2-miles per second, 7,200 mph! From the trail it was plain that the object had descended vertically into the ASR beam, leveled off for a few seconds, then climbed at tremendous speed out of the beam again.
Then an ARTC controller called Andrews AFB and told them they had a target south of their tower, directly over the Andrews Radio range station. The operators looked and saw a "huge fiery-orange sphere" hovering in the sky directly over their range station.
By sun-up, the UFOs ended their 5-hours of maneuvering over Washington. But before they left, at 4:30 AM a radio engineer by the name of E. W. Chambers was leaving the WRC transmitter station when he saw five huge discs circling in loose formation. The objects tilted upward and climbed steeply into the sky.
Diagram of July 20, 1952 UFOs Over DC
Diagram of the UFOs tracked by Washington's National Airport radar scope on July 20, 1952. At A, 7 objects approach the Nation's capital from the south. At B, some are seen over the White House and Capitol. At C, they appear over Andrews Air Force Base. At D, one UFO tracks an airliner. At E, one is seen to make a sharp right-angular turn.
Source: UFOs - A Pictorial History From Antiquity to the Present, by David C. Knight. (McGraw Hill Book Co., 1979.)
"There is no other conclusion I can reach but that for six hours on the morning of the 20th of July, 1952 there were at least ten unidentifiable objects moving above Washington....I can safely deduce that they performed gyrations which no known aircraft could perform. By this I mean that our scope showed that they could make right angle turrns and complete reversals of flight".
Senior Air Route Traffic Controller Harry Barnes.
"I saw several bright lights. I was at my maximum speed, but even the I had no closing speed...Later I chased a single bright light which I estimated about ten miles away. I lost visual contact with it at about two miles".
Lt William Patterson, F-94 Pilot who chased UFOs over Washington DC, 1952.
The 1952 UFO Sighting Wave, Part 1 (pdf)
As papers, politicians, and public clamored for answers, the Air Force hosted the biggest press conference in history. A transcript shows that the spokesperson engaged in what amounted to double-talk,but the reporters, desperate for something to show their editors, picked up on Capt. Roy James' off-the-cuff suggestion that temperature inversions had caused the radar blips. James, a UFO skeptic, had arrived in Washington only that morning and had not participated in the ongoing investigation.
Nonetheless, headlines across the country echoed the sentiments expressed in the Washington Daily News: "SAUCER" ALARM DISCOUNTED BY PENTAGON; RADAR OBJECTS LAID TO COLD AIR FORMATIONS. This "explanation" got absolutely no support from those who had seen the objects either in the air or on the radar screens, and the U.S. Weather Bureau, in a little-noted statement, rejected the theory. In fact, the official Air Force position, which it had successfully obscured, was that the objects were "unknowns."
Though the major Washington sightings occurred over the weekends of July 1920 and July 26-27, 1952, sporadic reports and trackings were recorded into mid-August. Here, the black dots indicate unidentified targets tracked on the radar screen at Washington National Airport on August 15
Video shows an exhibit about UFO files contained within the National Archives and Record Administration (NARA)
Originally posted by Gazrok
For those who are unfamiliar with this incident, some of the old ones are still the best ones.
Reflecting on the incredible events, Harry G. Barnes, a senior air traffic controller for the Civil Aeronautics Administration, wrote in a widely distributed newspaper account that the UFOs seemed to
"..become most active around the planes we saw on the scope. . . . They acted like a bunch of small kids out playing. It was helter-skelter as if directed by some innate curiosity. At times they moved as a group or cluster, at other times as individuals over widely-scattered areas. . . .
There is no other conclusion I can reach but that for six hours on the morning of the 20th of July there were at least 10 unidentifiable objects moving above Washington. They were not ordinary aircraft. I could tell that by their movement on the scope. I can safely deduce that they performed gyrations which no known aircraft could perform. By this I mean that our scope showed that they could make right angle turns and complete reversals of flight. Nor in my opinion could any natural phenomena account for these spots on our radar. Neither shooting stars, electrical disturbances nor clouds could either. Exactly what they are, I don’t know".
Originally posted by Gazrok
The “official” explanation given at the time was “temperature inversions” on radar. The press accepted it and let the story die.
Originally posted by GLontra
The US government created this fake explanation in 1952..
"As a result of several trips to project Bluebook,I´ve had an opportunity to examine quite carefully and in detail the types of reports that are made by Bluebook personnel.In most cases, I have found that theres almost no correlation between so-called "evaluations and explanations" that are made by Bluebook and the facts of the case...
There are hundreds of good cases in the Air Force files that should have led to top-level scientific scrutiny of this problem,years ago,yet these cases have been swept under the rug in a most disturbing way by Project Bluebook investigators and their consultants."
Dr James McDonald -Senior physicist at the Institute for Atmospheric Physics and professor in the Department of Meteorology at the University of Arizona