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Ocala Radar-Visual Case
Pinecastle Electronic Warfare Range Tracking Station, a restricted facility operated by the U.S. Navy 32 miles east-southeast of Ocala, Florida (in the north central part of the state) was the site of a puzzling, still-unexplained UFO incident late on the evening of Sunday, May 14, 1978.
The incident began with a phone call from a civilian. At about 10:05 p.m., she called from nearby Silver Glen Springs to ask if the installation was shooting off flares. She had just seen something that looked like a flare. The duty officer, SK-1 Robert Clark, assured her no such operation was going on at that moment. A second call came a few minutes later. A man, later identified as Rocky Morgan, said that he and seven other persons traveling on Highway 19 near Silver Glen Springs had just seen an oblong-shaped flying object, some 50 to 60 feet in diameter and "almost the color of the moon," pass over the top of his car. It had a flashing light which was intensely bright at its center.
Clark checked with the Jacksonville Air Route Traffic Control Center, which told him no aircraft were in the area. He and the base air controller, Gary Collison, climbed up an observation tower next to a van containing the base's radar equipment. Clark contacted external security and directed them to contact TD-2 Timothy Collins, a radar technician. Collins rushed to the tower. The personnel already there were watching a cluster of glowing lights off to the west-northwest. They were at eye-level and seemed to be just above an old Civil Defense tower three miles away. Even though it was a clear, quiet night, the witnesses heard no noise emanating from the lights, which apparently were attached to a single object.
After watching them through binoculars, Collins went down to warm up the track radar, which took five minutes, and the acquisition radar, which took 20 minutes. As he waited, he looked for the object with a periscope on the van and saw it again. At around 11:20 radar locked on to the target. The object was located at 0.2 degrees elevation, or just a hundred or so feet off the ground, at the assumed distance:"treetop level," Collins would say. Its image on radar was "as strong [as] or stronger than" the image of the tower. The object seemed to be the size of a jetliner.
Ten to 15 minutes later it abruptly vanished from both sight and radar. But at around 11:40 the same or a similar object appeared 15 degrees to the north. Collins located it visually, but the second, computer-assisted radar did not track it for some reason. He also saw it through the periscope. A few minutes later it disappeared suddenly from both instrumented and visual observation.
Around midnight it or another object was seen three miles to the northwest. For five seconds it moved at more than 500 knots on a course, then accelerated for two seconds, and executed a hairpin turn in one second. When it made that turn, it was 15 miles south of the base, which meant it had covered 15 miles in seven seconds; most of that distance was covered in the last two seconds (a speed of 7700 mph is required to cover this distance in that time). The turn was a radical reversal of direction; now the UFO was shooting northward and toward the observers at the base. Its speed had slowed almost instantaneously to a mere two knots. It was at this point that Collins's radar locked on to it. After a little more than a minute, the object vanished. The sighting was over.
A dozen or so personnel had seen the object or objects. One of them, TD-AA Carol Snyder, told a newspaper reporter, "We saw three very blurry lights: red, white, and green. We watched them for about 30 minutes. We couldn't see how fast they were traveling. We were holding the binoculars, and the lights appeared to be bouncing,"
The Navy conducted an investigation out of the Jacksonville center but came to no conclusions. Allan Hendry of the Center for UFO Studies interviewed several of the witnesses and gathered radar, meteorological, and astronomical data. He considered, then rejected, various prosaic alternatives before declaring this a CUFOS case of "high merit."
UFO tracked by Navy men at electronic range in Fla.
OCALA, Fla. (AP) — "I've never seen anything like it," says Timothy Collins, a Navy radar technician who tracked an unidentified object over the Florida sky. "And I don't want to see anything like it again."
Collins was among at least a dozen workers at the Navy's Pinecastle Electronic Warfare Range who said they spotted brightly lit objects.
"The computer wouldn't handle it," said Lt. Cmdr. John Sullivan, commander of the range, used by the Navy to train its combat pilots in tactics for avoiding enemy weapons..
Pacific Stars And Stripes (pdf file)
I was the watch tower guard that night, and there are some facts that were not mentioned. Such as that Jacksonville NAS launched 2 aircraft to intercept. Once they were on our radar, the UFO vanished.
They had it locked into their radar as well. Our radar locked onto one of the UFOs. I have never seen a radar act so crazy. Spinning around and around, up and down.
I just wanted to add my 2 cents worth due to the fact that I saw the UFO first from the tower. I and airman K.C. woke the Petty Officer of the day, and drug him up the tower to see what we saw. (before any calls were received).
That night we were told not to talk to anyone about this by the commanding officer. I have told this story to many of my friends and they all thought I was crazy! I am sure you can check Navy records to confirm I truly was there
May 14, 1978; Pinecastle Electronic Warfare Range, Florida
The target was observed for approximately one hour when it began to move at about 400-500 knots.
The radar operator said he tried to "train" the radar on the object but it accelerated rapidly, evading his efforts to lock and track it on the computer. When he caught up with the object, it reversed direction and started back toward Pinecastle. The radar operator finally locked on the object after it had practically stopped moving. Shortly after the target broke radar lock. Collins, the radar operator had been operating radar for most of his eight years of service. A total of eight Naval personnel visually observed red, green and white lights of the object from the control tower for over an hour.
Originally posted by BIGPoJo
Even if you confirm an unidentified radar blimp you still don't answer to important questions.
What is the flying object?
Who is flying it.
For five seconds it moved at more than 500 knots on a course, then accelerated for two seconds, and executed a hairpin turn in one second. When it made that turn, it was 15 miles south of the base, which meant it had covered 15 miles in seven seconds; most of that distance was covered in the last two seconds (a speed of 7700 mph is required to cover this distance in that time). The turn was a radical reversal of direction
The Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird holds the official Air Speed Record for a manned airbreathing jet aircraft with a speed of 3,530 km/h (2,193 mph). It was capable of taking off and landing unassisted on conventional runways. The record was set on 28 July 1976 by Eldon W. Joersz and George T. Morgan Jr. near Beale Air Force Base, California, USA.
10:20 PM. 12 men witnessed a UFO with multicolored lights at the Pinecastle Tracking Station, near Ocala Forest, Florida. It hovered over trees and an old Civil Defense tower, then made a hairpin turn. It flew at only 50 to 100 feet altitude as confirmed by radar, and had red, green and white lights flashing in sequence.
The Captain of the "Lisa C" on the Apalachicola River also witnessed it at 10:30 p.m.
(Sources: Allan Hendry, International UFO Reporter, June 1978, p. 4; Richard H. Hall, The UFO Evidence, Volume II: A Thirty-Year Report, pp. 22, 244; Xenolog, June 1978, p. 9; NICAP UFO Investigator, September 1978, p. 1).
Chronicles of the Strange and Uncanny in Florida
Originally posted by BIGPoJo
Even if you confirm an unidentified radar blimp you still don't answer to important questions.
"Of these UFO reports,the radar/visual reports are the most convincing. When a ground radar picks up a UFO target and a ground observer sees a light where the radar target is located,then a jet interceptor is scrambled to intercept the UFO and the pilot also sees the lights and gets a radar lock only to have the UFO almost impudently outdistance him,there is no simple answer."
Edward J Ruppelt USAF Capt 1956
"the reported perception of an object or light seen in the sky or upon the land the appearance, trajectory, and general dynamic and luminescent behavior of which do not suggest a logical, conventional explanation and which is not only mystifying to the original percipients but remains unidentified after close scrutiny of all available evidence by persons who are technically capable of making a common sense identification, if one is possible."
The UFO Experience: A Scientific Inquiry by J. Allen Hynek, Henry Regnery, Chicago, 1972, p. 10.
Originally posted by Erno86
Have you ever heard or read any information about any UFO sighting's over Pawtuxent Naval Research Test Center.
UFO incident near the Patuxent Naval Air Test Center in Lexington Park, Maryland (population 9,743). "Witnesses saw a blue UFO that same evening" near the center on Highway 235, and "It hovered for a few minutes, then sped away." (See the Fredericksburg Free-Lance Star for April 7, 1998)
"..IT HAD ROUND POD LIKE COMPARTMENTS CONNECTED WITH LARGE CYLINDERS. IT HAD GREEN, WHITE AND I THINK RED LIGHTS (LOOKED PINKISH) ANYWAY THE COLORS SEEMED TO LOOK LIKE MUTED AND BLURRED NEON LIGHTS. I THINK THAT IT WAS NO MORE THAN 20 - 30 FEET AWAY FROM US. I DO NOT REMEMBER GETTING OUT OF MY CAR OR GETTING BACK INTO MY CAR AND GOING HOME. THE NEXT MORNING I SAID TO MY FRIEND, OFF-HANDEDLY "DO YOU REMEMBER SEENNG THAT LAST NIGHT"? HER REPLY WAS YES. AND THAT WAS THE END OF THE DISCUSSION. THE EVENT SEEMED DREAM LIKE AND I HAD NO IMPULSE TO TALK ABOUT IT FURTHER WITH HER, NOR DID SHE WITH ME.
I VAGUELY REMEMBER SOMETHING ABOUT MY FRIEND'S FACE LOOKING LIKE IT WAS SUN BURNT, BUT DON'T RECALL IF MY FACE WAS BURNT. I REMEMBER SEEING THIS OBJECT HOVERING SILENT AND STILL ABOVE US AND I REMEMBER BEING OUTSIDE MY CAR AND EVERYTHING ELSE IS A BLANK. MY RESEARCH OF THIS EVENT CORRESPONDS WITH THE SIGHTINGS AT THE PINE CASTLE ELECTRONIC CENTER. SO FOR ANY OTHER REPORTS OF THIS SIGHTING, I WILL ATTEST 100 PERCENT THAT THIS CRAFT WAS THERE.
Unidentified Flying Objects: The Missing Information
A significant number of UFO reports and rumors of UFO reports since WW-II have involved various government individuals or organizations. UFO investigators have been endeavoring to get answers to these cases, but the results I have seen have been less than satisfying. Often inquiries are met with total denial. When replies were given, they usually contained blank or censored segments, even when requested through official FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) channels. This has resulted in the feelings of distrust between citizen and government and the continual cry of ‘cover-up.’
There is little doubt that government officials could put an end to this mystery if they were motivated to do so. Files could be opened. Satellite data could be released. Films could be released. Military and other government officials could be relieved of security oaths were UFO reports are concerned. NORAD, Dew Line and other tracking systems data sets could be released. NASA files could be released and crewmembers given permission to speak freely. This all should all be done while the principle players are still alive.
In the case of the older reports in government files, none of this would hurt national security because none of the older technology is still in use today. For newer cases the UFO information could be separated from sensitive material and fully released. Either way, it is time for some forthright help from government officials. The mass of information awaiting release is phenomenal...
The investigative report of the May 14, 1978 sightings at Pinecastle Electronic Warfare Range, Ocala, Florida, and witnessed by the base air controller and other personnel should be released.