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Are Meteorites Treated as UFOs?

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posted on Jul, 15 2009 @ 11:46 AM
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Last night I observed a Shooting Star. Unlike most Shooting Stars this one was close and came straight down, appearing to land in the hills outside of town. Immediately afterward there was a lot of military helicopter air traffic in that area. We rarely ever see military helicopters in this area, however, the National Guard does do night maneuvers annually in the area where the Shooting Star seemed to come down. It just seemed rather coincidental.

I started thinking about it and I know that in High Powered Rocketry, just a small amount of ferrous metal in Rocket will set off Radar if it reaches a ceiling above 5000 feet or so, which is why you have to file a launch plan with the FAA 48 hours a. of time. So, it would stand to reason that a small meteorite, with high concentration of iron would do the same.

I know that Unidentified Radar Contact causes jets to be scrambled to the location to investigate. A lot of the bored rednecks around here like to launch homemade weather balloons made out of a Campbells Soup Can, a Votive Candle, Butane, and a Dry Cleaning Bag, just to watch the jets fly over. 10 minutes later.

So, I'm wondering if anyone here can confirm whether or not Meteorites are treated as UFOs by the FAA and if it is S.O.P. to investigate them when they fall.




posted on Jul, 15 2009 @ 03:07 PM
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I cant answer that question. But i can say that a UFO is a unidentified flying object. So, as long as the object stay unidentified (to dont know what is it), it is considered a UFO.
When you see a meteorite, well its easy to define it i would say. But what if what you saw was lets say a spaceship burning, flying at high speed (some kind of alien object used to travel)?

About the UFO definiton associated to extraterrestial life, mostly we see pics/footage of their "travel system". So, its not really "unidentified" (it is about who owns it, or better saying, is it man made, or alien made)

Im making my first posts, and hopefully my posts will evolve with my learning. So pardon about something wrong, and yes i accept criticism.


[edit on 15-7-2009 by eddy_12]



posted on Jul, 15 2009 @ 05:33 PM
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Yes - but it doesn't necessarily mean anything fell!

Well, whenever there is a bright meteor, people often call 911 and report "something" crashing. They in turn investigate, for obvious reasons. Of course, people see the choppers/whatever, and jump to the conclusion that a UFO has crashed.

As you saw, meteors can look much closer than they actually are. Basically the brain has trouble interpreting what we see in the sky, much like the moon illusion, and it interpenetrates brighter things as being closer. Meteors can get very bright!

Also, our brains do not take into account the fact that we live on a curved surface, with a curved atmosphere, and that objects apparently near the horizon can actually be many miles up above the ground.

Usually if you are close to where a meteor fell, you would hear sonic booms/rumbling some time after seeing it.

I've explained this a million times here in the past and don't want to have to type it all out again, so here's a couple of quotes from my previous posts that should explain:


People often mistake meteors for UFOs or planes about to crash - meteors have a strange knack for playing tricks on unsuspecting eyes. The brain has trouble interpreting the size, distance and therefore the actual speed of a light source/object in the sky with no/few visual cues, so it makes up the missing information. This is the basic principal of an optical illusion, and the nature meteors (brief and bright) makes them ideal candidates.


This page explains in a bit more detail about why meteors can appear to be closer to the ground (or the observer) than they actually are.

This diagram should help you visualize what is going on:


Basically, the lower down in the sky (or closer to the horizon) a meteor appears to be, the further away it probably is. In the exceptional cases where this is not the case, and a meteor is still luminous, and less than 1km away from you, unless you're within diving distance of a bunker, that would probably be the last thing you ever saw.

In 1908, what is thought to be a fragment of a comet exploded somewhere between 5 and 10 km above Tunguska, devastating an estimated 2150 square km and knocking down 80 million trees!


Here's one example of a recent thread here on ATS where a similar situation occurred in Australia.

[edit on 15-7-2009 by C.H.U.D.]



posted on Jul, 15 2009 @ 05:37 PM
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I would also think that some of our myths of flying craft, especially that show a similar trail are just meteors. That doesn't mean there weren't any space craft or flying machines.



posted on Jul, 15 2009 @ 05:54 PM
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When I was a child we had a small meteorite strike the ground in the field in my backyard. It left a crater about 4 feet deep and about 10 feet across. The actual meteorite was pretty small, about the size of a small dog, but it had massive weight, being almost entirely dense iron. My father couldn't move it with a wheel-barrow because it was too heavy.

When it struck it sounded like a car hitting a tree. No thunderous boom, or anything like that. Certainly no devastating shock wave felt two acres away. Matter of fact, there was a tree that was but a few feet from impact. The tree remained upright though it caught on fire and was hollowed out from the fire.

I don't remember how long we waited before recovering the meteorite from the crater. It seemed like forever to me at the time, but after the fires were put out, my father still told me not to go near it for a long time.

Therefore, I'm kind of skeptical of the notion that small meteorites that burn up in the atmosphere, leaving smaller pieces intact would cause impact that would be devastating. I can understand larger ones doing such, but having been within a few hundred meters of an impact as a child and seeing such little effect from it, I don't subscribe to such notions being the rule rather than the exception to the rule.



posted on Jul, 15 2009 @ 05:55 PM
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reply to post by aleon1018
 


It would not surprise me. Most people don't seem to realize how variable meteors can be in their appearance, and the types of trails they leave can also lead to allot of confusion as you hinted.

Hey, there aren't too many things around that leave glowing trails of ionized air behind them!



posted on Jul, 15 2009 @ 06:05 PM
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Lol, i might get around to trying that! Sounds fun!



posted on Jul, 15 2009 @ 06:07 PM
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Originally posted by fraterormus

When it struck it sounded like a car hitting a tree. No thunderous boom, or anything like that. Certainly no devastating shock wave felt two acres away. Matter of fact, there was a tree that was but a few feet from impact. The tree remained upright though it caught on fire and was hollowed out from the fire.


Well, if that story is true, and I'm not sure I believe it because a meteorite that small would likely not cause any fires or be hot enough to do so, then you might not hear any "thunderous boom" (although there would likely be some rumbling in the distance before hand).

Meteorites of that size are slowed down to well below the sound barrier pretty quickly by the atmosphere. They are usually "free falling" when they reach the ground, so no "shock wave" or loud boom.



posted on Jul, 16 2009 @ 01:56 PM
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Originally posted by C.H.U.D.
Well, if that story is true, and I'm not sure I believe it because a meteorite that small would likely not cause any fires or be hot enough to do so, then you might not hear any "thunderous boom" (although there would likely be some rumbling in the distance before hand).

Meteorites of that size are slowed down to well below the sound barrier pretty quickly by the atmosphere. They are usually "free falling" when they reach the ground, so no "shock wave" or loud boom.


The impact was in a dry pasture. It very well could have triggered a smoldering grass fire at the roots within the crater. The grass fire is probably what would have burned the tree from the inside, not the meteorite itself.

That meteorite was my most prized possession (next to my replica Battlestar Galactica Viper Cockpit) as a child. I was beyond devastated when I had to leave it behind when we moved to the other side of the country.

It shocked me, looking at Satellite Photos from almost 30 years later, that the impact crater is still visible to this day. Something I didn't notice as a child that is apparent in the Satellite Photo is that there is a raised circular area around the central impact where the ground was pushed upwards. From the ground you wouldn't notice that it was raised at all.



It's also funny to note that the tree next to the crater is now gone and no signs of the presence of that tree or it's roots just to the crater's right in the photo is visible. The meteor left a lasting impression on the earth, but not the tree.



posted on Jul, 16 2009 @ 02:56 PM
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There is constant speculation on what a UFO can do these days.
Perhaps they are invisible to Radar now.
Or they always were and the reports we could see them in the 1950s
was miss information to ease the shattered nation after Truman let
the flying woks in the country.

I saw a plane making a trail on the 4th of July but why did it
have a dark triangle haze behind it.
Was the plane just a projection.



posted on Jul, 16 2009 @ 03:17 PM
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Some meteorites are mistaken as UFOs but not all.



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