Airline pilots’ UFO sightings demystified in case of mistaken identity

What they're seeing is a lot closer to home than they realize.

  • Many airline pilots claim to have seen unidentified flying objects (UFOs)
  • But it turns out the source of what they’d seen could be a lot closer to home
  • Researchers recreated the exact condition of the sightings for answers

Published on Mar 22, 2024 at 7:54PM (UTC+4)

Last updated on Mar 25, 2024 at 1:20PM (UTC+4)

Edited by Tom Wood

While some airline pilots claim to have seen an unidentified flying object (UFO), it turns out the source of what they’d seen could be a lot closer to home.

Researchers used half a dozen pieces of software to model a sighting – and what the airline pilots are seeing could be manmade – rather than alien.

It turns out they may have actually been looking at one of the 5,500 dazzlingly bright Starlink satellites currently orbiting Earth.

READ MORE! ‘Dragonfly’ plane mysteriously lost in New Zealand’s ‘Bermuda Triangle’ is still being searched for 60 years later

In a new preprint paper by researchers from the University of Utah, it is mentioned how ‘many deployment and orbital evolution strategies’ have led to ‘a long string of confusions’.

With thousands of satellites in orbit, plus an additional 36,500 pieces of space junk that are 10cm or larger, it makes sense that pilots will see things they don’t recognize.

Like this pilot who captured a super rare ‘gigantic jet’ phenomenon during a night flight.

That video is definitely worth a watch – it’s incredible.

They discovered that modeling sky conditions and the right lighting could help SpaceX Starlink satellites be more recognizable in the sky.

U.S. Navy pilot, Ryan Graves, testified to Congress about a UAP he saw and couldn’t explain.

He also founded an organization to ask for more UAP reporting and resolution transparency.

“The [Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)] has no direct process for commercial pilots to report unidentified or anomalous objects in our airspace,” Graves told Newsweek.

“FAA regulations direct pilots to report UAP incidents to civilian organizations without official follow up or analysis via a verified official data set.”

The industry and the US government responded with new policies creating paths for all airline pilots to report their UAP sightings.

The result is an influx in reports of UFO sightings from airplane pilots.

And airline pilots aren’t the only profession seeing things as an ex-US Navy officer warned of ‘unidentified underwater objects’ lurking in the ocean.

In this new paper, the researchers detail an instance from 2022 in which five pilots from two airlines reported the same UAP sighting.

Sightings of the UFO were corroborated with photos and video footage.

To address it, the physicists made a model to simulate what the airline pilots saw.

X/Elon Musk

The scientists studied the photos and video footage submitted by pilots, approximating the brightness and category of the visible objects.

Then they employed specialized software, like SAOimage DS9 from the Smithsonian Astronomical Observatory to study every pixel, deducing sizes and angles.

“The video shows that the apparent size of the object did not change during the 12.7-second useful interval of the video,” their analysis said.

“Photo 2, however, shows the object angular size to be smaller than in Photo 1, because a ’zoom’ factor has been applied to the second cellphone picture.”

The team also plotted the set of Starlink satellites that launched the same day.

They used data that applied to the first of the five flights that had observed the UAP, then metadata from the cell phone photos to narrow down the exact window of time the UAP was overhead.

From there, the team was able to fish out the relevant data points from Starlink’s trajectories, speed, and more.

Blender – a 3D modeling software used for video games – was then used by researchers to view their satellites from the cockpit of the relevant airliner.

And the intense forensic reconstruction yielded results, revealing an image that accounts for everything the pilots saw.

Each satellite looks unique from every angle, in every lighting condition, and in all of its configuration states.

It’s hoped the 3D model can put pilots’ minds at ease.

The study authors also called for more public information about satellites in our skies.

It enables pilots to track and contextualize them.

It’s not the first time the US has spoken out on what most UFO sightings actually are, with the Pentagon even coining a new term for them.

For those who believe some UAPs are sent by aliens, being able to rule out the other 99% as Starlink sightings would help.

Keep your eyes on the skies, people.

Some of the images in this article were created using AI

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