Weiteren Background von Mick West/Metabunk zur F-18-FLIR-Video-Aufnahme der NYT-Story:
The "B" next to the altitude means the altitude is calculated on Barometric pressure, an R would indicate Radar altitude.
"TAC" or "TACT" refers to the main menu type, i-e either "Tactical" or "Support" (SUPT). (TAC) contains options for combat-oriented systems such as radar and stores management, and (SUPT) is used to access non-combat functions such as navigation and maintenance modes.
There's a great example of fighter jets on FLIR here, which I compare side-by-side to the Gimbal UFO below. I've also posted that comparison on video here. Suppose we only had the snippet of this fighter-jet footage before the FLIR zooms in enough to see the actual jets. We could then say much of what the proponents of the Gimbal video say about it, that these UFOs have no wings or visible propulsion system and appear to be propelled at high speeds by technology not present in the inventory of any military force. Lol! Then all that "analysis" vanishes in a split second with a quick zoom. So it seems likely we're in that same epistemic hole with the Gimbal footage.
However, there's a notable difference with the Gimbal object and any other aircraft-FLIR video comparator I've seen, which is that the Gimbal object has a reasonably consistent (and so coherent) detailed curvilinear outline throughout the clip, curves that are even artistic, or aesthetic, in nature. In contrast, the available (and very limited number of) examples of jets on FLIR resemble blobs with very fuzzy edges. So it's possible that the Gimbal shape closely reflects the actual mechanical design of the object.
For that reason I've been pounding away on google for some kind of rigid weather balloon or blimp that could fit the bill. Which raises an important question I don't have data for, which is: How fast is the Gimbal UFO moving? It may in fact not be moving as much as the footage seems to imply. Most importantly, we need to know if such a blimp can rotate as seen, and gets as hot (black) as the Gimbal object. That last point may refute the blimp hypothesis because I suspect a blimp on FLIR would show thermal variance from sunlit side (darker) to its shaded side (lighter), but the Gimbal object looks pretty hot, and uniformly so across its apparent shape.
You can use the vegetation patterns to display both zoom levels are the same scale.
Note this is not so much the planes being to small to make out any detail. Even if we reduce the horizontal resolution to 380 pixels, we get this:
So what we are seeing is the IR glare being bigger than the actual plane, and covering up any detail.+++
I don't think the GIMBAL object is particularly detailed. I think it's a essentially an IR glare that has been smeared out a bit in a few directions by the glass cover, as I explained here:
Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AcsAZTKRv5E+++Regarding this "V", looks like it's a TDC assignment symbol. "TDC" stands for "Throttle Designator Controller" and the symbology design it as a diamond displayed on the upper right corner of the DDI. If I understand correctly the NATOPS manual (F/A-18E-F Super Hornet), you can then have either:
- ◊ : TDC control is assigned to both cockpits
- ^ : TDC control is assigned to front cockpit
- v : TDC control is assigned to rear cockpit
So SLEW here is not active, and the TDC control is done by the rear cockpit.
Definition of the TDC:+++
Mick, wow, fantastic analysis! So it seems the thermal shape of a fighter jet on a FLIR screen might entirely overlap its actual form. Also, variable contrast settings on a specific camera or its software might artificially etch out a crisper edge than another FLIR system with different contrast settings.
Here's a rough-sketch model of a possible configuration that keeps the rear-end view of a jet straight down the line-of-sight of the target-pod's camera as stipulated by the FLIR-screen data starting at 54˚ Left and ending the clip @ 6˚ Right...
Though it's possible a dead-on rear view isn't even necessary for a strong and stable thermal signature with a similar impression. We should want hundreds of hours of FLIR-jet footage to know the range of possibilities.
What puzzles me is the fast motion of clouds that seem to be further than the object, but that could be an illusion. The fast motion of the clouds across the field of view seems to suggest they're not so far away. All that in turn creates an impression (an easily false impression) that perhaps the object is not even more than a mile away. I've seen your distance analysis. The distance to the object is another missing datapoint from the highly-selective release that is allegedly accompanied by "chain of custody documents" but in fact lacks even a scintilla of supplementary documentation. In many ways it's foolhardy to even be guessing on this lacking any supplementary case data, except I guess for those of us who just like tackling a 'What is it?' mystery.+++
The easiest way to get some perspective on this is to note that the clouds never get any closer, even when the jet is heading directly for them at 240 kts.
It's difficult to wrap my head around. There's are very narrow field of view (0.75°). The object and the jet are both moving, and probably not in straight lines
Starting at frame 0 the clouds take 67 frames, or 2.23 seconds to cross the field of view, it's at a bit of an angle so that about 0.75° in 2 seconds, or 0.375°/sec
Starting at frame 400 it takes 103
600 - 758
Total cloud movement is about 6° to 7°. total camera rotation is 60° (54 to -6). So the camera rotates about 10x the rate the object is moving relative to the clouds, angularly.
In the first 300 frames (10 seconds), the heading changes from 54° to 40°, 14 degrees, or 1.4° per second. about 4.28 minutes for a full turn.
Air speed is 241 Knots, 277mph, so in 10 seconds the jet would have travelled 0.77 miles.
If we take the target position as essentially fixed (if it's far away), then the heading change is the actual turn rate of the jet and so would travel a circle of circumference 277/60/60*360/1.4 = 19.8 miles
Adding this all together in a VERY simple GeoGebra sim with a non-moving UFO seems to indicate the UFO is around 12-15 miles away
Here the circle is the path of the jet. The green line is the original line of sight to the UFO. The pink line is the Line of sight to the UFO, so the angle between them is the angular movement of the clouds behind the UFO. When the Jet moves though 60° the cloud angle moves about 6°
Notice the speed of movement of the pink line, it starts out moving smoothly, but then slows down and essentially stops as the Jet Heading (black arrow) crosses over it. Just like in the video.
This is making some gross simplifications about the turn rate and path of the jet, but I reckon it's in the ballpark.
Here's a better animation synced with the video. It's illustrative of the size of the angles involved and the angular motion of the clouds.
The Gimbal object starts to rotate most notably as the LoS to it becomes 2˚ L and it continues rotating as the LoS changes to 4˚ R. So the target rotated most as the jet's vector pointed most directly at it. That would be when the jet was closing its distance to the target at the fastest rate in the clip. Coincidence? Well...
That fact harkens this observation, wherein an overloaded target rotates as distance to it changes...
That overloaded signature seems to rotate clockwise as the aircraft moves further away and rotate counter-clockwise as it approaches the target (using the ELV screen data to determine distance). That effect might be caused by the camera adjusting its focus to changing focal relations. Also important to note, there's no rotation of the camera even as that overloaded target rotates, which is also sometimes true of the Gimbal camera and target.
The smooth mechanical rotation of that overloaded target above strikes me as the same smooth mechanical rotation we see in the Gimbal FLIR's overloaded target. So even given differences in the shape of this vs the Gimbal target, having watched the Gimbal footage 10 thousand times, looking at this signature feels like the same kind of motion.
Quelle: Mick West / Metabunk
Eighty nautical miles off San Diego, the U.S.S. Nimitz Battle Group was engaged in routine training. Then it became anything but routine.
Three F/A-18 Super Hornet fighter jets practicing dogfight maneuvers were interrupted and revectored mid-mission to investigate an Unidentified Aerial Phenomenon; military parlance for a UFO. They engaged the craft, but were quickly outmaneuvered and lost visual contact. It had simply vanished.
The pilots were clearly baffled by the object. “Look at that thing, dude,” said one in a video credited to the U.S. Department of Defense by the New York Times.
Fast forward 13 years to Dec. 16, when the New York Times published a report on the 2004 incident and a little-known Pentagon program that tracked such reports from 2007 until at least 2012. Included was the video of the incident, which was captured by a Raytheon Advanced Targeting Forward Look Infrared sensor, mounted under one of the fighter jets.
Called the Advanced Aviation Threat Identification Program, the government program analyzed UAP imagery and data such as the images from the Raytheon-made ATFLIR.
“We might be the system that caught the first evidence of E.T. out there,” said Aaron Maestas, director of engineering and chief engineer for Surveillance and Targeting Systems at Raytheon's Space and Airborne Systems business. “But I’m not surprised we were able to see it. ATFLIR is designed to operate on targets that are traveling in excess of Mach 1. It’s a very agile optical system with a sensitive detector that can distinguish between the cold sky and the hot moving target quite easily.”
ATFLIR, designated AN/ASQ-228 by the U.S. Navy, is a single pod that combines mid-wave infrared targeting and navigation FLIRs, an electro-optical, or visual light, sensor, a laser rangefinder and target designator, and a laser spot-tracker. It can locate and designate targets day or night at ranges exceeding 40 nautical miles and altitudes surpassing 50,000 feet.
Even so, the video images are not definitive proof that the jet pilots were chasing an actual UFO.
“To really be sure, we would need the raw data,” said Dr. Steve Cummings, vice president of Technology Development and Execution at Raytheon Space and Airborne Systems. “Visual displays alone are not the best evidence.”
So how best to track an alien spaceship in our skies?
“Wide-area search of some form or another," said Cummings. “I would want want at least two sensors, like radar and [electro-optical/infrared], to search the skies...One way to actually verify these and be absolutely certain that this is not an anomaly is to get the same target, behaving the same way on multiple sensors.”
Last Updated: 12/19/2017