Most people here on ATS who have been around awhile know me as being "skeptical" that UFO sightings represent something of non-terrestrial origin.
I've been on record several times stating that I simply don't believe we mere earthlings would be interesting for any advanced civilization capable of
interstellar travel. However, last night I experienced something that defies terrestrial explanation.
First, my reason for being outside at 10:30 in the evening in Phoenix. Without getting into details, we've had a problem with nocturnal critters in
our back yard. So for the past few nights I've been sitting outside in the hopes of seeing what problem critters are coming into the area. With iPad
and a couple beers (and a couple Nat Sherman's cigarettes), it's rather enjoyable.
The account of the sighting is a mix of 70/30 information discovered at the time, and going back to the tools available to confirm what I saw. I'm
doing my best to document as much detail as I can so that others may compare against the sky and research what I may have seen.
It was a clear night, 50 degrees or so, with low humidity, and the time was about 10:30 mountain time. I happened to look up at the stars, as I always
do whenever I'm out at night, and noticed a bright star that I don't recall seeing before. So I paused the Netflix movie on my iPad and launched the
SkyWalk app to figure out what it was. The nice thing about the app is that you can point the iPad up at the sky, and the app is aware of the angle
and direction so as to give you a detailed star map of where it's pointed.
As near as I can figure, the bright "star" was to the left and slightly higher than the Menkalinan star in the Auriga constellation, making nearly a
right triangle with the Capella star, also of the Auriga constellation. This new "star" appeared to be about 1.5 times the distance to the north from
Menkalinan than Menkalinan is from Capella. It was slightly brighter than both of those stars.
My immediate thought was a satellite, and I went back to watching Netflix. About 15 minutes later, I noticed that the "star" I saw was a bit lower in
the sky relative to Menkalinan, no longer forming a right triangle with Capella. Again, I thought my feelings of a satellite (possibly geo stationary)
were confirmed as Capella and Menkalinan would be rising through the night. As I was thinking perhaps I should grab our binoculars, it suddenly
The motion was rapid, and appeared "downward" from my position -- though the motion also could have been to the north east. The motion didn't seem to
be perpendicular to the horizon, and may have been slightly to the north (left). When the "star" hit a position that appeared to be at about 20
degrees elevation, it split into two with both portions going immediately in opposite directions and out of sight within seconds. As best I can tell,
the two new "pieces" went north and south, but it's hard to be certain on exact direction.
(NOTE: At the time, I noted the two nearby stars but not the actual names. I obtained those by using SkyWalk and setting the time to yesterday evening
when the observation happened.)
The light of the object seemed to be pure white, no distinguishable flashing, and no flicker.
No sound either before or after as far as I could tell.
When it began to drop, I stood and walked back a bit for a better view. It's unlikely the observed effect was due to any latent adjustment of my eyes
from watching a relatively bright LCD screen in the night.
I had not yet finished the first cerveza Tecate I brought along.
Going back to the beginning of the post, my reflexive thoughts have always been that "things in the sky" are not of fantastic origins beyond this
earth. But this defies explanation as something earth-bound technology could produce, especially in the apparent speed of the two "objects" that broke
away and apparently split to travel north and south at an exceptionally high rate of speed.
All you have is my word; the word of someone who habitually doubted extraordinary explanations of things like this, suddenly compelled to post his
observations of something extraordinary.
I've created a QuickTime video that simulates, as much as possible, what I saw.
I used Google Sky to grab the star orientation at the time, and make the "object's" size and brightness appropriate relative to the Capella star... so
the ultimate scale and star-field size may be off a bit, but the motion of the object is nearly identical to what I saw.
510k movie file.
The animation illustrates better than I could describe that the motion was very linear and abrupt... no apparent acceleration/deceleration, just
instant full-speed motion
edit on 29-11-2010 by SkepticOverlord because: (no reason given)