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What the snip was that?

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posted on Feb, 26 2012 @ 10:32 PM
Hi All,

As some of you may know from my previous posting activity, I have recently become very interested in Sirius. Therefore, every night when I go outside (I'm a smoker, so a few times a night) I always look up at the sky at Siruis and Orion, its just habit by this point.

Anyway, tonight when I went outside I saw something that I A.) Have never seen before, B.) I've never heard described before, and C.) Don't even know where to start as to "Google" what it was. Generally, I don't jump to conclusions regarding flying/moving objects in the sky around here because I'm pretty close to the Pentagon and this area has an incredibly high amount of sky traffic. ANYWAY getting to the point. I'm hoping someone here has either seen something like this, or knows what it is.

The object in question didn't have any lights, so there's a chance is was even a naturally occurring phenomenon that I just don't know of... I tried to draw a sketch but I'm really not good at drawing, so its more of a diagram. I'll do my best to explain.

In the sketch you'll see I've drawn an area on the right with solid lines. That looked like what I guess could be described as a comma shaped cluster of white clouds.... Um not really sure how else to put it. In the lower right corner of the drawing you'll see my incredibly poor attempt to show how the clouds were kind of shaped...

The object was moving across the sky at a pretty swift pace. Not "zooming" per say, but moving faster than I've ever seen a cloud move. It was pretty big, but seemed pretty far away too so I know that I probably have no idea actually how large it was. From my perspective it was a little smaller than Orion, if that even helps...

The area on the left is even harder to explain. I couldn't actually SEE anything there.... so overall it looked like a comma shaped cluster of clouds moving quickly across the sky. But the reason this thing actually caught my attention is that the area that I have sketched with a dotted line - its almost as if the sky was displaced or something. Like I saw something there but not really.... Man I really hope I'm making some sort of sense here...

The whole incident lasted about 30 I'm doing my best to recall as much as possible.In case these details are needed for someone to help out - it was about 10:30 pm and the sky was very clear, no other clouds that I saw. The formation moved from the left of orion to the right and kept going out of my view.

Thanks so much everyone in advance for taking the time to read this... I never would've posted about something like this without pictures but it really did catch me off guard so I hope someone knows what I'm talking about.

posted on Feb, 26 2012 @ 10:41 PM
I'm afraid that without a actual photo or video it will be hard to either explain, or understand what you saw.

It could be a multitude of mundane things, such as high altitude cirrus clouds or a jet trail. Since the moon was down by then, most high altitude clouds would look vague and not plainly defined.

Or you may have actually witnessed something that defies explanation, but unfortunately you don't have anything but your spoken testimony (meaning that if you had captured it as a pic, it would allow us to take a closer look at it, so it could be analyzed, and either be debunked, or proven to be beyond mundane explanations).

All I can offer is advice: keep looking up......and have a camera handy!

You never know when you might see something.

posted on Feb, 26 2012 @ 10:45 PM
reply to post by eriktheawful

Thanks for your response. I need to get a good camera... I have an Evo and the camera just isn't good enough to capture anything in the sky especially at night.

posted on Feb, 26 2012 @ 10:53 PM
Sounds like one of those supposed "circular camo aircraft".
I don't remember the exact name, but it's some sort of "possible secret aircraft".

That's the only explanation I have so far. Wait for an expert, and don't go off this "circular camo" stuff. It's just that thats the only thing that's crossed my mind so far.

posted on Feb, 26 2012 @ 10:54 PM
reply to post by jonthedit

Appreciate the thoughts! I'll do a little research into the aircraft you've mentioned. Any ideas are good ones at this point!

posted on Feb, 26 2012 @ 10:56 PM
Taking shots of the sky at night can be hard especially if your only light source is stars. The light from them needs to be exposed for several seconds, even with CCD (digital cameras), and anything moving will streak or blur.

Here's a shot of Orion I took years ago, with a SLR film camera. The exposure was on a tripod, using a remote cable to hold the shutter open for 15 seconds:

If there is a bright moon out (half a moon or more), and you are taking pictures of it, it's bright enough that you can take shots at a fraction of a second. Objects lit up by the moon take much less exposure (even the clouds).

Digital camera's that use CCD chips are a boon to Astrophotography. Exposure times were cut way down as compared to using film (taking shots through a telescope of faint galaxies that used to take 45 minutes, were knocked down to only 15 to 20 minutes). Plus you can look at the picture right away. But many everyday camera's lack the features you need to take night shots of the sky (full control over focus and exposure times). Camera phones are the worst for this, heh.

Anyways, if you like to stare at Canis Major (where Sirius is) and the Orion constellation a lot, consider getting the cameras to take pictures of them. You'll get some wonderful shots, with just a tripod, remote shutter cable, the camera and a 50mm lens (that's what I used for the above picture).

posted on Feb, 26 2012 @ 11:01 PM
reply to post by eriktheawful

Thanks so much for the advice! I love that shot - so clear! I'm actually saving up to get a telescope - but the camera might be a good idea in the mean time. Either way your right, I definitely need to get something soon. I'm always looking up - and always thinking I need a camera just in case.

posted on Feb, 26 2012 @ 11:10 PM
If you're saving for a telescope, don't buy one less then 400$, as I can guarantee they will disappoint most people.

posted on Feb, 26 2012 @ 11:12 PM
reply to post by jonthedit

Good to know, thanks!!!

posted on Feb, 26 2012 @ 11:37 PM
And if you get a Digital cam, get yourself a tripod too, handy for low light shots so I doesn't get blurry from longer exposures!

posted on Feb, 27 2012 @ 03:03 AM
In regard to proper cameras, i recommend either the Nikon, or Canon line of products.
These are pretty much the standard in professional work.

You do, however, get what you pay for. If you go with a cheap $1000 or less consumer model, you'll get fantastic photos, yes, but, the flexibility and quality you get with the higher end models very noticeable once you've acclimated to a consumer model and then get your hands on something a little better.

The bonus with the DSLR models is lens choices, as well as adapters available that will fit telescopes.
For medium to long-ish range shots, you can get a 75-300mm lens, while keeping another lens on hand for closer casual shots of friends, activities, whatever.

Like with the DSLR bodies, with lenses, there's also a consumer level grade lens that's much cheaper, and the much pricier professional level lenses.

Depending on what you want to do with a camera and how far you want to take it as a hobby, or art, you can spend less than $1000 on a whole package deal for a cheap consumer level model, on upward to tens of thousands for some cameras. In the Nikon, or Canon lines, you can spend $10k+ easy on a Flagship body and lens combo.

Aiming at something in the middle ground or just above the lower consumer grade level will, however, be more than adequate for your purposes with room to grow.

Something to consider in choosing a name brand is that you get stuck with that name brand since the lenses you get are most suited for that name brand, and should you ever upgrade to a better camera body in the future, you can save by using the same lenses you did with the older body.
If, however, you jumped ship to another name brand, you would have to get new lenses that fit the new name brand, at extra expense.

I like, and shoot with Canon. Others like and shoot with Nikon.
It's an old rivalry, almost like sport teams. Either or, both are great choices.
There are, of course, other choices in DSLR name brands, but, you typically won't get the same standard and flexibility in choices, support, compatibility and reliability you get with Canon and Nikon.

There's a number of photographers here on ATS. If you have questions before taking the plunge on an expensive choice (it's all expensive), open a thread for a pros and cons debate on your choices, and/or U2U one of us.

As mentioned above by another poster, having a tripod is pretty important.
There's cheap, and even free tripods, and you'll notice and extreme difference in the stability and lack of wiggle you find with a decent tripod you pay a couple hundred $ for.

You get what you pay for, or don't pay for. This works at most levels with most things. Buy cheap, you get cheap, and dems dat.

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