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Several million years ago some super-civilization in a distant galaxy launched an unmanned satellite to our solar system. Its purpose was to search for life and, if i t found any, to keep tabs on its development. The satellite is still functioning and circles the earth periodically, presumably sending reports back to its home planet.
This may sound like a crackpot theme form some obscure fringe journal but actually it is a theory that has been put forth by a number of leading scientists after repeated observations of an artificial satellite of unknown origin. The object was first sighted by Dr. Lincoln La Paz of the University of New Mexico i n 1953, four years before the Soviet Union launched Sputnik I. As more reports poured in from observations around the world, the Department of Defense assigned Dr. Clyde W Tombaugh to run a search for the strange "bogey". Dr. Tbmbaugh was the distinguished astronomer who discovered Pluto in 1930.
The results of Dr. Tombaugh's study were never formally leased by the Pentagon. Nothing further was heard about the object until December 1957, when Dr. Luis Corralos of the Communications Ministry in Venezuela photographed it, somewhat to his own astonishment. The first man-made satellite, Sputnik I, had been launched two months earlier and he was taking pictures of Sputnik II as it passed over Caracas.
His photograph revealed a trace of a second, unknown object closely following the Soviet's dog-carrying satellite. Laika, the first earthly animal to enter space, had company!
The Black Knight
While both the United States and the Soviet Union were racing to launch relatively small satellites into orbit in the late 1950s. astronomers and military tracking stations were following the course of something huge. On January 4,1960, scientists discovered two large objects in a polar orbit. To date neither the U.S. nor Russia had achieved a polar orbit. The objects were estimated to weigh a t least fifteen tons. The largest US. satellite a t that time weighed 450 pounds and the largest Soviet satellite 2,925 pounds.
Late in February 1960, the US. Department of Defense formally announced that an unidentified satellite was circling the globe. I t was tracked and studied by several different observatories and the National Space Surveillance Control Center a t New Bedford, Massachusetts. Professor Alla Masevich, the Soviet scientist heading the Russian Sputnik tracking program, flatly denied suggestions that the mystery satellites belonged to the Soviet Union.
The press labeled the intruder "The Black Knight" and it was extensively discussed in the New York limes, Newsweek, Life, other major periodicals.
It vanished as mysteriously as it had arrived. But it has quietly reappeared from time to time ever since and been buried in the fine print of NASA's weekly catalog of debris and objects orbiting the earth.
"Since August the 16th, an 'ANONYMOUS SATELLITE' has been sighted in Italian skies EVERY NIGHT. It has been spotted from Trieste and other Italian towns the last seven nights. It always appears about 10-12 minutes before the time of the previous night's sighting. It can be seen with the naked eye and looks like a THIRD MAGNITUDE STAR, but the light emitted by such an unknown object is not steady, blinking on and off at regular intervals of about seven seconds. It moves on a Northwest-Southeast, trajectory about 300 MILES ABOVE THE EARTH. AND APPARENTLY LOSING ALTITUDE DAY BY DAY Its passage can be observed with the naked-eye, for just two minutes as it moves along its orbit around the earth at tremendous speed. Such an orbiting object DOES NOT EMIT RADIO SIGNALS. It is not the Sputnik III but could be, perhaps, the third stage of the rocket that launched it."
- Prof. Ettore Martin
(long article, very interesting read)
... the crew realized that the acquisition of the second object located its position to be far out in space somewhere between the moon and earth. Then they realized that the object appeared to be in a stationary orbit some 80 to 100,000 miles from earth.
In 1953 rumors began circulating that large, unidentified objects had been detected in high earth orbit. Allegedly these objects, referred to as "moonlets," were in orbits that could not have occurred naturally. The implication was that these unidentified satellites were not natural bodies, but man-made. The only problem was at that time there were no countries with an advanced enough rocket able to put a satellite into orbit. Nevertheless, ground based radar in the United States showed that there were at least ten objects, all around two to five thousand feet in diameter, in high earth