35 Air / Ground Radar UFOs detected over Sopley in 1971 Confirmed by Wing Cmdr Alan Turner

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posted on Jul, 27 2009 @ 03:20 PM
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More often than not the UFO community focuses on cases that are sadly lacking in objective data. While many radar cases don't have the raw radar printouts attached in digital format it's nice to know at some future point (assuming they're not deleted or erased due to retention policies) that they'll eventually be made available for public consumption.

One such case is the April 21st 1971 radar incident reported by Wing Commander Alan Turner MBE, over southern England. Like many high quality cases the incident was virtually unknown to the public. Thankfully the British Closest Encounters documentary team was able to secure an interview with Mr. Turner and recorded his expert insight as the supervising air traffic controller to help clarify the record,


Narrator: Turner examined the blips on his screen [near Sopley] and determined the only thing that could be moving at that speed was the most advanced fighter of the day -- the Lightning. But the sheer number of aircraft indicated was simply unbelievable.

Turner: It was so unusual. People just looked at it and said, "What is going on?" We're talking 30, 35 aircraft. No Air Defense Commander in his right mind would get the entire Lightning force in one location. He'd have absolutely nothing left with which to defend the United Kingdom Air Defense region. You could cut the air with a knife. It became electric rapidly. People were -- more than surprised.
@0:55 (emphasis added)


In response to this Turner rerouted a RAF Canberra aircraft returning from West Germany to intercept.


Turner: I kept asking the pilot, "Are you visual?" And then he said, the voice sounded quite jittery, "I don't know what that was, it was a quarter of a mile away, climbing like the clappers and we saw it on radar. We did not see it visually.

There were seven technically different radars all seeing exactly the same thing. Two radars at Southern radar, two radars at Heathrow, two at the fighter control establishment, and the airborne one with the Canberra bomber.
@1:40 (emphasis added)


All of the data and physical evidence from these observations (such as the video tape of the radar; and air/ground, land-line, and tape recordings between the controllers) were collected and sent to the MoD. It has yet to be released.

Turner sums up the experience in a way that one can't help but think that there was something of a highly extraordinary nature in the air that's simply being ignored by the scientific community, "I'm absolutely certain that it was some very strange phenomenon on radar. Which no one has yet come up with any sort of rational explanation for." (@2:49)

Mr. Turner who was awarded the MBE in 1984 and retired from the force in 1995, has been assured that there were no training operations, classified or otherwise, going on at the time and there were no weather balloons or probes in the area. (Horne 2008)

The full interview with Alan Turner is available on Youtube here:



The full airing of Britain's Closest Encounters of the 'Alderney Lights' (Alan Turner's case was discussed at @35:00) clocks in at about 44 minutes and can be seen here:


Google Video Link



REFERENCES


  • Horne, Marc (9-14-2008). "RAF officer breaks 37-year silence on UFO radar mystery" (in English). Scotland on Sunday. scotlandonsunday.scotsman.com...
  • Wheeler, Virginia (9-13-2008). "RAF radar chief: I saw UFO fleet" (in English). The Sun. www.thesun.co.uk... Retrieved on 27 July 2009.
  • Alan Turner, Dr. David Clarke. (July 30, 2008) (in English) (avi). Britain's Closest Encounter - Alderney Lights. [TV production]. England: Five. Event occurs at 35:00. video.google.com...
  • Darcy, D. (July 27, 2009) (in English). "(1971/04/21) Sopley, UK 35 air / ground radar UFOs". wiki.razing.net...


    RELEVANT INTERNAL LINKS


  • www.abovetopsecret.com...

    [edit on 27-7-2009 by Xtraeme]
    edit on 11-2-2011 by asala because: (no reason given)
    edit on 14/6/2011 by ArMaP because: (no reason given)




  • posted on Jul, 27 2009 @ 04:37 PM
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    Another point I should have made in the OP is that, "More than 30 pairs of eyes of RAF staff and radar operators at Heathrow Airport witnessed the same thing." (Wheeler 2008).

    This is significant. If any of these people can be convinced to come out and speak publicly it would further corroborate the extraordinary nature of the incident.

    [edit on 27-7-2009 by Xtraeme]



    posted on Jul, 27 2009 @ 05:00 PM
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    Another thing I'm very keen on finding out is the name of the pilot.

    Since I'm not a UK citizen does anyone have any advice on the British FOIA system? Also I'm not entirely sure the United Kingdoms allows requests from non-citizens. Any information or advice navigating the MoD bureaucracy would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks!



    posted on Jul, 27 2009 @ 05:51 PM
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    reply to post by Xtraeme
     


    Excellent thread my friend, and yes it is all too often that people want UFO cases that are visually appealing, while the other cases may be more scientifically compelling, like this case and many others with multiple radar contacts. This case sounds similar to the Milton Torres case, as well a very poorly documented case about a "fleet of 50 UREs"(Unknown Radar Echos), sometimes called the "NATO Incident", crossing the Russian boarder into the Allied controlled Europe in 61'.

    As far as this case goes, here is a good link in case you did not already know about it:

    Emanating from a point some twenty nautical miles east of the eastern extremity of the Salisbury Plain Danger Area were a series of six or seven blips moving on a south-easterly track each being separated from the other by about six miles. At about forty miles from the point they appeared on radar they disappeared to be followed almost immediately by a replacement at the point of origin.

    I put the FPS 6 Height Finder onto some returns to discover that they were about 3000 feet when they came into radar cover and climbing extremely rapidly so that, by the time they disappeared from radar, they were in excess of 60,000 feet. To climb to such a height in only forty miles was beyond the ability of any fighter aircraft at the time.

    The phenomenon was witnessed by four civil and six military controllers on duty at the time. I called Heathrow Radar to discover that they, also, wee seeing a similar picture. The same situation prevailed in the Fighter Control Operations Rooms at RAF Neatishead. The three units involved operated different radars from each other thus different frequencies were in use. The weather forecast from the south of England was calm and sunny. I called the Met Office to confirm the strength of the upper winds to find that they were also relatively calm and were about fifty degrees off the southeasterly track of the blips; they also confirmed that there were not Met balloons/probes airborne at the time.


    www.ufodigest.com...


    The whole episode lasted for twenty minutes or more before the blips stopped appearing. I impounded the R/T tapes and the Radar Video film and made appropriate entries in the log. Each person in the Ops Room who witnessed the incident was required to write a report. The Squadron Leader in charge of Operations collated the reports and informed higher authority. Within a couple of days I was interviewed in the Squadron Leader's office by two men who were not identified to me. I, along with all the others in the Ops Room on the day in question, were told in no uncertain terms not to relate what we had seen until cleared to do so. About four years later I was serving at RAF Wattisham when the Station Commander asked to see me. I was told that he had a communication from the MoD about the incident at Sopley and that as 'nothing could be confirmed' the situation was such that doubt would be cast on anything I said about it. I took this to mean that I was no longer to remain silent.

    I am at a loss to explain what I, and many other people, saw. In those days aircraft could not climb at such a rate. To be seen on displays by three different ground radars, plus the airborne radar in the Canberra, is also a mystery. The weather conditions were very definitely VMC or Visual Met Conditions; the aircraft was clear of cloud by at least a thousand feet vertically and with a forward visibility of at least five nautical miles.


    www.ufodigest.com...

    Also there are many cases similar to this in the Blue Book Unknowns

    Again, excellent thread.


    [edit on 7/27/2009 by jkrog08]

    [edit on 7/27/2009 by jkrog08]



    posted on Jul, 27 2009 @ 07:57 PM
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    reply to post by jkrog08
     


    The main reason for the thread was to promo Alan Turner's interview. It always helps when people have a face to go along with the story.


    In my humble opinion we need to start discussing cases tracked by radar, sonar, theodolites, satellites (Baker-Nunn's), spectrometers, etc. It seems like the vast number of people are clueless about these cases.

    I doubt many people are aware of the satellite reconnaissance projects present during the '60s (like the BMEWS system) or the "Samos" system which was a highly scrutinized for details by the intelligence community. Or that the United States government used diffraction-grating cameras in an effort to obtain spectrographic data about UFOs to reveal their chemical make-up.

    The number of objective cases are simply overwhelming.

    As for the cases that you called out, they're definitely some of the more interesting ones. Another very impressive case that someone ought to force people to look at is the 1970 Captain Schafer / NORAD / Lightning Foxtrot 94 incident.


    It is September 8th, 1970, we are in the depth of the Cold War and tensions are high on both sides. Saxa Vord was a radar station based on the Shetland Islands whose primary function was to spot unidentified craft approaching the North Sea. Around this time Russian bombers made regular, unauthorised flights along the British coastline (or as near as they could get) to test the RAF and NATO defences. It was a constant game of ‘Cat and Mouse’. This particular night, a radar operator detected an unidentified aircraft halfway between the Shetland Islands and Alesund, Norway. The object was tracked and held steady at a speed of 630mph at 37,000ft and on a south-west trajectory. Suddenly the object turned 30 degrees to head South and accelerated to 980mph (Mach 1.25) and climbed to 41,000ft. As per procedure a scramble message was despatched to the nearest NATO airfield which was RAF Leuchars. Within several minutes two Lightning interceptors were in the air homing in on the object, which they were expecting to be a Russian jet. Then the object performed a manoeuvre that astounded the radar operators. The object, which until now had been performing within the range expected of a Russian plane, now turned through 180 degrees and disappeared to the North at a speed calculated at 17,400mph.

    Despite the sudden disappearance of the object the two Lightning jets stayed airborne and over the next hour the object returned from the North and the Lightning interceptors would turn to approach the object, which would then retreat in the usual manner. Now the chase was joined by two F4 Phantoms scrambled from the USAF base at Keflavek in Iceland. The radar onboard the Phantoms was quite sophisticated and was able to detect the object. But when the Phantoms attempted to give chase the object effortlessly disappeared at high speed, leaving the Phantoms helpless. It was at this point NATO Commanders were becoming concerned and the situation was being monitored at the Ballistic Missile Early Warning System (BMEWS) at Fylingdales. It was also being tracked by a second BMEWS in Greenland. The information being gathered by all these different stations was now being relayed to NORAD, deep in the Cheyenne Mountain.

    Meanwhile the game of chase was still taking place, until around 9pm when the object seemed to vanish completely. The Lightning interceptors were ordered to return to base while the Phantoms were ordered to patrol off the Icelandic East coast. Approximately 40 minutes later radar operators detected the object again. This time the object was travelling at a more leisurely 1,300mph, well within the range of both Lightnings and Phantoms. Two Lightnings were scrambled again from RAF Leuchars, with another two being scrambled from Coltishall, Norfolk. Unbeknown to those already taking part in the chase Strategic Air Command HQ at Omaha, Nebraska was ordering its B52 bombers to get airborne. Things were escalating quickly.

    ...

    Continued here thetruthhides.wordpress.com...


    I'll definitely comment on your new Brief Perspective thread when I have a bit more time. There are some important points that need to be made.

    All the best to you Justin.



    posted on Jul, 27 2009 @ 08:11 PM
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    reply to post by Xtraeme
     


    Thanks, and that is another good case. I just hope that your thread gets some attention, this case deserves it.



    posted on Jul, 27 2009 @ 08:52 PM
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    reply to post by jkrog08
     


    People will read what they want to. Can't force them read something they're not interested in. *shrug*


    By the way since I mentioned it earlier it might be of use for others to start investigating the WS117L / SENTRY records from the NROs declassified records. I've been working on SAMOS reports to see what they've turned up.

    This declassified index of reports from 1945 to 1967 might prove useful to you, JK, or other researchers.



    posted on Jul, 28 2009 @ 03:16 AM
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    Phillip Mantle has quite a few useful things to add to this case,


    [Alan Turner:] The phenomenon was witnessed by four civil and six military controllers on duty at the time. I called Heathrow Radar to discover that they, also, were seeing a similar picture. The same situation prevailed in the Fighter Control Operations Rooms at RAF Neatishead. The three units involved operated different radars from each other thus different frequencies were in use. The weather forecast from the south of England was calm and sunny. I called the Met Office to confirm the strength of the upper winds to find that they were also relatively calm and were about fifty degrees off the southeasterly track of the blips; they also confirmed that there were not Met balloons/probes airborne at the time.

    The winds were not strong enough, nor in the right direction, to cause the blips to travel on their observed track especially at the speed they were traveling. It was estimated that they were doing around 250 knots, but it must be borne in mind that this was a lateral speed as seen on radar - they must have been traveling very much faster to climb over 50,000 feet in less than forty miles. Equally the weather was such that there were no 'angels' to affect the radar picture. "Angels" was a euphemism for, what were believed to be, ionized pockets of air which, under very specific atmospheric conditions, were often seen on radar screens in those days: when seen, these 'angels' traveled extremely slowly simply drifting along haphazard tracks. In those days all radars were 'raw'. That is to say that, whatever was within the coverage of the radar envelope and capable of bouncing (returning) the radar pulse back to the receiver, would be seen on the radar tube. Today's radars are computerized thus such interference is processed out so as not to affect the picture.

    Looking around for some other method of checking what was going on, I discovered that a controller had two Canberras on frequency returning from Germany. One of the pilots agreed to investigate so I assumed control of his aircraft and, having confirmed he was in good visual met conditions, I vectored him on to the blips keeping him regularly updated on their position relative to the Canberra. The aircraft was flying at around nineteen thousand feel and when it got within a mile or so of one particular blip, the pilot reported, in a very agitated voice, that his radar had picked something up heading down his port side by about a quarter of a mile and 'climbing like the clappers', it was on a reciprocal heading to the Canberra. The pilot admitted that neither he nor his navigator made any visual contact and confirmed that the weather conditions were such that they would have had no difficultly seeing something that close.

    www.theblackvault.com...


    [edit on 28-7-2009 by Xtraeme]



    posted on Jul, 28 2009 @ 05:22 AM
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    Originally posted by Xtraeme
    reply to post by jkrog08
     


    In my humble opinion we need to start discussing cases tracked by radar, sonar, theodolites, satellites (Baker-Nunn's), spectrometers, etc. It seems like the vast number of people are clueless about these cases.


    But if you do that, we won't have an space left for reptilians, Johnathon Reed, rods, Billy Meier.....



    posted on Jul, 28 2009 @ 10:09 AM
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    reply to post by Xtraeme
     


    thanks for posting this story Xtraeme,

    i am sure not many people have heard of this one before (me included)

    30-40 ufo's ? caught on radar ? sounds like an invasion to me


    reminds of the story Robert Dean talks about in the Fastwalkers video

    S+F



    posted on Jul, 28 2009 @ 11:05 AM
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    Originally posted by Sam60
    But if you do that, we won't have an space left for reptilians, Johnathon Reed, rods, Billy Meier.....




    While I'm not going to completely discount these people (though we should be skeptical of them and their somewhat tenuous claims). The point of studying UFOs is to separate fact from fiction in a rigorous manner. The best way to start doing that is focusing on the cases that have an overwhelming amount of physical evidence that's on military or civil record.

    To quote something I wrote awhile ago,


    Even when dealing with the truly egregious cases, people like Reed, we can still word ourselves in such a way as to deflect criticism and demonstrate that UFO investigators are truth-seekers by expressing certainty and uncertainty in the correct proportions!! For example,

    "Jonathan Reed, or by his true name - Jonathan Rutter, released extremely compelling footage that was of great interest to those of us who make it our business to identify UFOs. After analysis, however, based on testimony from Mr. Rutter's, now, ex-girlfriend and his live-in roommate, Larry, there's question to the truthfulness of Mr. Rutter's story. It's the position of most organizations that the events surrounding Mr Rutter's story were likely manufactured."

    Notice I point out the best aspect of Mr. Rutter's case, but proportion it correctly to the best known counter-information. There's no reason for me to personally attack Mr. Rutter. It's entirely plausible the counter-evidence is as much a forgery as is the pro-claim. Getting in to these sorts of debates only wastes time and prevents discussion of the incidents that are truly worth our efforts.

    In summary, don't paint with a broad brush. Summarize condemnation and praise in correct proportions. The truth is rarely black and white.


    www.abovetopsecret.com...


    [edit on 28-7-2009 by Xtraeme]



    posted on Jul, 28 2009 @ 03:19 PM
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    Originally posted by easynow
    reply to post by Xtraeme
     


    thanks for posting this story Xtraeme,

    i am sure not many people have heard of this one before (me included)


    The radar cases, for some odd reason, seem to get buried. I'm going to go through my archive and start compiling various threads to give people a taste of some these incredible, but unknown accounts. Hopefully it'll help re-frame the debate around actual evidence instead of speculation.


    30-40 ufo's ? caught on radar ? sounds like an invasion to me


    reminds of the story Robert Dean talks about in the Fastwalkers video


    Sounds fairly similar. NORAD has been privy to a number of anomalous observations (radar and otherwise) during their tenure. I just wish people, like Dean, would have made physical copies of the records they claimed to have seen while at SHAPE, Cheyenne, and other SAC / NORAD locations. C'est la vie.



    posted on Jul, 28 2009 @ 04:37 PM
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    reply to post by Xtraeme
     

    That's all quite fair & reasonable.

    I try start off with an open mind & then time allowing I tend to read quite extensively, even about the crazier ones like Rutter, Meier, Lear, Icke, etc...

    But in the end, I have to conclude that some of that stuff is just whacko!






    posted on Jul, 28 2009 @ 09:27 PM
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    Originally posted by Sam60
    reply to post by Xtraeme
     

    That's all quite fair & reasonable.

    I try start off with an open mind & then time allowing I tend to read quite extensively, even about the crazier ones like Rutter, Meier, Lear, Icke, etc...

    But in the end, I have to conclude that some of that stuff is just whacko!



    I give you credit.

    Normally when I hear someone spouting off about something that I have no way of verifying I just turn them off. Rutter was somewhat the exception in the sense that he not only had video evidence, but various other oddities. However I contrasted this against his body language and he always seemed to be acting. Couple that with his questionable background, the missing body, and it was enough for me to place him in the "doubtful" pile.

    It's very rare that I consign someone irrevocably to the "charlatan" bin. But that doesn't mean I have to waste my time listening to them.


    [edit on 28-7-2009 by Xtraeme]



    posted on May, 1 2010 @ 08:00 PM
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    Did a little searching and seems a few people are discussing it in the blogosphere ...

    realtvufos.blogspot.com...

    And The Shropshire Star Newspaper covered Turner back in 2008 ...

    www.blackvault.com...





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