1. igoddard

    igoddard Active Member

    Just to make sure I wasn't fooling myself with an isolated overlay example, I chopped out all segments with 2x magnification in IR and TV and overlaid them with rigidly fixed overlaid positions. There are three 2x IR segments that are much shorter than the one 2x TV segment. So I rerun the three IR segments over the one continuous-running TV segment. I didn't use the last few frames in 2x where the object leaves the screen. The purpose of this is to see how the ATFLIR system localizes the TV and IR signals during smooth tracking, thus off-center motions (ie, loss-of-tracking moments) are irrelevant.



    It's apparent that when the target is smoothly tracked, the ATFLIR system localizes the IR signal to a position corresponding to the upper right quadrant of the TV-imaged 'tic tac'. That happens to be the exact location I suggested the IR signal would fit if it was a right-side-biased solar-warmed upper edge of the object. I suspect this is not a coincidence. Very likely the ATFLIR system builds a composite model of tracked targets, assigning locations to the target's hot spots where those hot spots would exist on the visible (ie, TV imaged) object, and maintaining during smooth tracking a static position for the entire composite object.
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2018
  2. igoddard

    igoddard Active Member

    After studying up on the ATLFIR tracking system, I've overlaid a Centroid Tracking template:



    The ATLFIR system uses Centroid Tracking to estimate the target's center of mass, which it then strives to keep pinned to the center of the screen. Because the IR signal is persistently pinned off center and is placed over what looks to be the upper edge of the object, it seems clear that the ATLFIR system determined the warm spot is located on the upper edge of the target's mass, a predictable spot for solar warming.
     
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2018
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  3. Agent K

    Agent K Member

    The target may be off center in IR if the operator is doing offset tracking, or for some technical reason, like cropping the raw video to fit the screen resolution. The target is probably tracked in one camera at a time, seeing as how switching from TV to IR almost loses the track.
    To me, the target in IR mode looks like it could be an airplane, and it's too far away to make out its tail. It's only like 25 pixels long. But you'd think the WSO would recognize an airplane.
     
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2018
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  4. Clouds Givemethewillies

    Clouds Givemethewillies Active Member

    How many degrees of solar warming are you likely to get with a few hundred knots of airflow, or are you thinking of a balloon?
     
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  5. igoddard

    igoddard Active Member

    Excellent point to raise because it need not be solar warming. Some surfaces will reflect the sun's warmth on FLIR. That fact was key to resolving flashes seen on FLIR footage taken over the tragic fire in 1993 at Waco, TX. Some claimed the flashes were gunshots from FBI agents massacring Davidians trying to escape the fire. Instead they were, across all cases, thermal reflections of the sun, the fire or the hot exhaust of tanks on thermally reflective objects.

    Here's an example from Waco, a reflection of the sun was briefly captured on the roof as the FLIR on an aircraft passed through the narrow reflective cone:

    [​IMG]

    A few feet to the left of that flash was the window ATF agents are seen on footage breaking into on the first day of the siege, shattering the window and apparently spreading glass shards on the roof nearby. That's perhaps the only example among the Waco FLIR flashes of not actually being able to articulate the reflective source, yet it follows from facts that glass shards could be there.

    Here's an example of the sun reflected on helicopter windows seen on FLIR during the US invasion of Somalia:

    [​IMG]

    A clown-car helicopter; countless solders jumping out, lol. So the brightness along the apparent top of the tic tac need not be solar warming. It could just be a reflection of the sun's warmth. Also, glass is by no means the only thermally reflective surface. Another common source at Waco was insulation material, perhaps containing mylar.
     
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2018
  6. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    A reflection of the sun seems possible, but it's odd that there would be no heat from an engine.

    I think more likely is that, as @Agent K said above, the offset exists for some other reason, and it's actually more centered because it's the engine(s).
     
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  7. Clouds Givemethewillies

    Clouds Givemethewillies Active Member

    Assuming the IR and visible use the same full-aperture off-axis parabola, the best (diffraction limited) resolution should be ~40X worse for the IR, compared to the visible. That the images come out roughly the same size 'blob' is a bit of a puzzle. Either the resolution has been severely degraded by vibration/turbulence, etc. or the object is actually blob-shaped in the visible.
     
  8. igoddard

    igoddard Active Member

    This is a representative sampling of 2x TV and IR, showing that the TV target is slightly off-center below and the IR signal slightly off-center above. It's actually only their composite that is kept nearly perfectly centered.

    [​IMG]

    Centroid tracking specifically determines a target's center of mass (COM), so I can't believe the system would determine COM based on IR alone, because IR is not a reliable measure of target mass/size/shape. So I suspect the system is itself constantly using EO even if the pilot has IR-view selected. That would account for the apparent reconstructive target modeling these off-center placements imply. Accurately modeling targets is a huge deal, a matter of life or death, of mission success or fail. So I'd be shocked if the system is designed to let the optimal COM sensor sit idle and use only the highly fallible IR sensor data to guess target COM.

    Btw, here's the Nimitz video in my video editor showing where I spliced out the 2x IR segments, seen as gaps in the tract, and placed over the large continuous 2x TV segment starting at its beginning. The 2x IR segments are across a wide range of the 76 sec video, with two segments being very close to the 2x TV segment. The 2x IR segments even combined are of much shorter duration, so in my videos above I reran them over the whole 2x TV segment.

    [​IMG]
     
  9. Agent K

    Agent K Member

    The IR sensor is the workhorse, since EO/TV is useless at night. If the system were constantly using EO in the background, the switch between IR and TV would be seamless. In IR, the centroid tracker tends to lock on to hot spots like engines and wheels, which is why the operator can manually offset the aimpoint from the feature being tracked. Also, if the target is moving left, it makes sense to offset to the left, so that if the track is lost, the target won't leave the FOV as quickly.
     
  10. Fin

    Fin Member

    (a) "it's odd that there would be no heat from an engine."

    (b) "Either the resolution has been severely degraded by vibration/turbulence, etc. or the object is actually blob-shaped in the visible."

    (a) Its not so odd if we take the pilots eyewitness testimony a little more seriously, since he did after all say no engines or other means of propulsion, no wings, etc, were visible! As it moved around just above the water no prop wash was visible, etc.
    (b) The pilot did say the object was "tic-tac" shaped. A tic-tac is much closer to "blob" shaped than a jet aircraft, which is angular with pointy bits!

    Could it be that the pilot was actually accurate in his description, and that the reason we see no engines, and the reason we see a blob, is because that's exactly what he's been telling us he saw.. all along.. and he was not being a cretin, or a salesman. He was actually.. just.. correct?
     
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  11. Agent K

    Agent K Member

    The object in the IR video is kind of triangular with the pointy bit on the left. An airplane at long range would look similar, with hot spots at the nose and at the engines, though possibly with a tail. The object in the Nimitz video is blurry because of shrinking and compression. The mpeg file has 240 lines, which is half the sensor resolution. In the raw video, it probably looked more pixellated than blurry.

    If the object in the video is the same object that Fravor saw, what could it be? If Fravor saw a cruise missile, would it stick around long enough for the next F-18 to capture the FLIR footage of it? If it's a balloon, how can it be moving left at 0.23 degrees/second, and how did it get away? Did it pop?
     
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2018
  12. igoddard

    igoddard Active Member

    And not just Fravor but also pilot Jim Slaight, who said the UFO "is best described as a tic tac."



    Watters cuts him off right after he says it was like a tic tac, not letting him expound any further on it. And I believe that's his only public testimony. Awful! But Fravor covers the extraordinary behaviors of it and Slaight does not disagree. These two pilots seem honest and exceedingly sane.

    We need some people to constantly doubt. But as soon as I overlaid the 2x segments, it's like suddenly I can see exactly what they say they saw. It then became easier for me to believe than doubt them. It seems that we have three sensory systems, IR, TV and human eyes all pointing to one conclusion... there was a tic-tac shaped aircraft that defies our expectations. What that means I don't know. But I'm impressed of that even as I also suspect the unusual motions on the footage may be camera artifacts.
     
  13. Agent K

    Agent K Member

    Glint from the sun would probably be visible in TV mode, but the target is 5 degrees above the sensor, so you're not seeing the top of it, and you shouldn't expect to see glint and solar warming.
     
  14. Agent K

    Agent K Member

    What a bad interview that was. Shows the wrong UFO footage, flubs the pilot's rank, cuts him off, and wastes time asking questions like, "Did you feel nervous when it behaved that way?" Should've asked them if they can confirm any of the accounts and videos on the web.
     
  15. LucM

    LucM New Member

    I've read the entire 2007 Above Top Secret thread about the first appearance of this video and many people there, UFO experts, navy pilot and the likes were all trending to declare it hoax
    http://www.abovetopsecret.com/forum/thread265835/pg8#pid2935425

    At that time, the craft was identified at being disc-like and zapping and teleporting anywhere around the pilots. The video seems to be a standard training video. Could it be Fravor's story was based on the video and not the video based on the story. The story itself has many elements of folklore. It conflates and changes everytime someone recalls it. How can we trust TTS to be sure this is from the Nimitz incident of 2004 and not just any training video. Like Gimbal is not from 2004.

    It is said somewhere, a longer version exists. But no one saw it. Has new evidence made sure this video is not a hoax anymore as it was in 2007? And where is the 3rd video TTS was about to release?
     
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  16. LucM

    LucM New Member

    Also this recent post on ATS is very revealing, i don't know if it was already discussed here, the consensus on ATS seems to be this is very standard FLIR vid of a distant plane at 20000 feet cruising straight not in any escaping maneuvers

    http://www.abovetopsecret.com/forum/thread265835/pg10#pid22964126
    So this source says the video is from another sortie and its most probable explanation is a cruise missile test and not a UFO. Then after that you have the other flight who takes the video "of something" and it resembles a tic-tac. And then maybe a debriefing of Dave "sex" Fravor and having seen the video of that OTHER flight, now he thinks he saw a tic-tac. You have to recreate the timeline here to understand why this story borders on folklore.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 18, 2018
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  17. igoddard

    igoddard Active Member

    This whole NY Times-launched UFO deal has been a wall-to-wall case study in bad journalism. Comments to my gimbal-UFO video are a nightmare. 460 comments with like 90% lambasting me for disagreeing with Fravor (ie, the pilot(s) they saw interviewed on the news), when he has absolutely nothing to do with that footage. The media managed to confuse/misinform countless people.

    There is one moment where it looks like glint on the top of the TV target, but it could be noise. FLIR detects difference of temperatures. So don't you think a sunlit object even traveling at high speed will be warmer on its sunlit side? The wind would be cooling both the sunlit and the shaded side. So even if the solar warmth is significantly diminished, seems inherent that the sunlit side would still be warmer than the shaded side, and that's all we need for a FLIR signal, thermal difference. Take a FLIR to the south pole and it should still show a reasonable image of the terrain even though everything is freezing cold. Provided there's any thermal difference, a good FLIR ought to pick it up.
     
  18. Patrick Hayes

    Patrick Hayes New Member

    Hi Mick, I've been following this particular instance since it came about and have been impressed with everyone's technical contrbution. There are however a couple of points that confuse me, mainly how many people had actual eyeballs on the ufo, and the fact that these people are trained professionals and that they mis-identified what maybe an ariel threat. Surely what would be of concern too the milatary is that some of their people are making mistakes or suffering from some grand delusion.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 18, 2018
  19. igoddard

    igoddard Active Member

    An argument against solar reflection atop the 'tic tac' is that if it's spheroid as assumed, it's unlikely that the cone of specular reflections from its top would be angled downward to the jet, slightly lower. Ie, the camera is unlikely out of the LOS for reflections. But still, I suspect the solar-loading model works even with high-speed wind.

    Here's an improved version of the sensor centroid offsets animation, the other one above moves so fast I get an optical-image carryover from one to the next frame that's confusing.

    [​IMG]

    The large black TV object is thermally invisible (same temp as the sky), and this blimp-shaped jet's non-blooming, thus not so hot, long afterburning plume is warmer on the side (right) it's not traveling toward (left). I just can't see a jet in this target hard as I try. Nothing seems to make sense for a jet.
     
  20. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    The military is well aware that people sometimes make mistakes. It's a constant and significant problem.
     
  21. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    I really don't think it's "solar reflection". Solar reflection reflects an image of the sun, it does not highlight an area.
     
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  22. sitarzan

    sitarzan Member

    @igoddard, good buddy? For the past several weeks, over 6 pages of post, you've analyzed the Nimitz video with greater scrutiny than anybody in this thread (and probably even the whole internet). Nice work! :thumbsup:

    I tried to keep up with your discussions with @Agent K and others. But I'll be honest; most of what you, @Agent K and others have talked about between you, has flown way over my head as an average Joe.

    If you were pressed to wrap it up right this instant, what would you give, @igoddard, as your 2 (two) sentence summary of all 6 pages of your superb, in-depth analysis of the Nimitz vid up to this point? Ideally, explained in ELi5-like terms and language that even a layman like myself could understand? Please? For us tech-challenged non-scientists up here in the nose-bleed seats? :)

    Thanks in advance.
     
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  23. igoddard

    igoddard Active Member

    Hay thanks sitarzan! This case has really flummoxed me because the more intensely I've gone at it, the more problematic it seems to have become wrt finding an anticipated simple explanation. The gimbal video was the opposite, the more I examined it the quicker it toppled, although I don't know where I'd be w/o the brilliance of Mick and others who provided key observations. The Nimitz video is complicated or augmented by witness accounts.

    I'd summarize my Nimitz-video position as: the footage does not appear to contradict eyewitness accounts and might corroborate their reports of the object's shape.

    I'd summarize my Gimbal-video position as: a rotational artifact induced by camera optics on the heat signature of a aircraft using combustion-based (thus very hot) propulsion. And all credit to Mick and others on that!
     
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2018
  24. TadGalahad

    TadGalahad New Member

    I second sitarzan's comment, and I appreciate your dedication to the truth, igoddard!

    I think your Gimbal assesment is spot-on, it is almost certainly a lens flare, and definitely reveals nothing out of the ordinary.

    I don't think you're giving the findings on the Nimitz case enough weight, though. We've established that it plausibly shows the equivalent of a zoomed-in tracking camera suddenly losing lock on a target that has been moving left. Naturally, the camera would stop tracking to the left, and the object would appear to suddenly drift off to the left of our screen. Mick has isolated a frame in the video, just before this sudden drift occurs, where the camera's tracking reticles have apparently failed to locate the Center Of Mass (and so loses track) of the target as the camera mode is being switched.

    I'm not sure that the nature of the objects size or means of propulsion are even very necessary anymore, as the explanation above, where this is the effect of a camera losing lock on a mundane object, discounts any possible inference of any 'otherworldy' qualities or movements, whatsoever. The pilots may say otherwise, but analysis of the only physical evidence we've got, the videos, unfortunately disagrees.

    The similar nature of the Gimbal video - that it ,too, is an ATFLIR camera effect - further suggests that this entire 'otherworldy physics/technology' narrative of TTS, Elizondo, and the pilots, is nonsense.

    Perhaps we can't nail down every detail in the footage, but I think there is a preponderance of evidence with what's been uncovered already to confidently call shenanigans here. Would you agree?

    (I'm not suggesting that further analysis is useless, maybe we're still missing a key point)
     
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2018
  25. Agent K

    Agent K Member

    I took a quick look at the thread. The initial post by thefinaltheory about the teleporting disk is just describing thefinaltheory's interpretation of the video. It's amusing how he describes every camera artifact and sensor switch as some incredible teleportation, like he's never seen FLIR video before. The other post by thefinaltheory translates the jargon-filled Event Summary into normal English. This is based on Fravor's eyewitness account rather than the video, so it describes the UFO as a white capsule.

    About the video's authenticity, the Washington Post reported:
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2018
  26. Agent K

    Agent K Member

    I agree that the FLIR video is consistent with a distant plane, above 20000 feet since it's 5 degrees above the sensor, possibly around 36000 feet altitude if it's 30 nmi away.
    I also agree that a loitering cruise missile like a Tomahawk is the most plausible explanation of the "tic tac" that Fravor described, but it still doesn't explain a lot of things.

    Is the FLIR video that's "from a different flight" the Gimbal video or the one we've been analyzing in this thread?

    The Event Summary describes the UFO as a white capsule, and it doesn't mention the FLIR video, so if it was written before Fravor saw the video, then it's not based on the video. Also, Slaight corroborated Fravor's account.
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2018
  27. Agent K

    Agent K Member

    I think it's the same target surface in TV and IR. The size and offset differences may be due to differences in sensor parameters and manual offset tracking. The tracker just tries to keep the track gate around the blob in the given camera mode, it's not doing anything too fancy.
     
  28. Agent K

    Agent K Member

  29. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    "Fravor said" is a rather vague source there. What exactly did he say, and when did he say it? The group had (apparently) been seeing anomalous returns for a few days. That could indeed be several dodgy radars. Something to do with weather conditions or some new radar system.

    Details are lacking.
     
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  30. igoddard

    igoddard Active Member

    Thanks TadGalahad! I presume you mean I gave the Nimitz footage too much weight. Keep in mind I'm not attributing any weight to the motions, all of which look suspicious as artifacts. I posted several videos linked in this thread showing unambiguous cases of camera-induced motion, one including a clear lens rotation. The famous motion occurs within seconds of that and as the system is going haywire, fuzzing out, flashes, camera changes and motions. A mess!

    However, the overlaid IR and TV seem to corroborate the tic tac shape, imo. That footage is during smooth tracking. There's no known way to cause something shaped like a tic tac to do what the pilots said they saw one do, or to just fly forward of a jet @ mach 0.55. Camera-induced motions aren't by themselves sufficient to dismiss the footage. And that more than one pilot says they saw exactly what the overlay appears to show is prima facie compelling.
     
  31. igoddard

    igoddard Active Member

    Here's a model for a hypothesis that the UFO is a jet, or maybe cruise missile... some conventional aircraft.



    Agent as pointed out the IR and TV might be offset, I can't find unambiguous evidence that that wouldn't be the case.

    However, if the symmetrically centered overlay showed a clear jet, then UFO proponents made them off center to cause an apparent UFO, that would seem rather forced. The exact-centered overlay, imo, is the most likely to be expected, and the least contrived seeming. Breaking the symmetry seems like theory forcing. And witnesses attest to a target that matches the one seen in symmetry. So, a priori, the tic tac hypothesis looks best. But in the context of known science, it's the extraordinary claim and at best we can't extract extraordinary evidence from grainy footage. It's curious at most.
     
  32. Agent K

    Agent K Member

    The fightersweep [second hand] account mentioned the E-2 Hawkeye
    So according to that account, the E-2 got a radar contact at the same coordinates as the Princeton, although it was focusing on those coordinates and possibly mistook some noise for a faint contact. It would've been more credible if the E-2 independently detected the object at those coordinates, but it didn't. The Boston Globe cites Fravor saying that the Nimitz could see the object on its radar as well, which is the first time I've heard that claim.

    The Boston Globe also says
    The "back-seater" WSOs haven't spoken out publicly as far as I know, but they may have been the anonymous sources who confirmed the story for the newspapers that reported on it.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 19, 2018
  33. Agent K

    Agent K Member

    In my opinion, not only is the tic tac hypothesis extraordinary, but also the EO/IR fused track hypothesis is unlikely. There are other sensor systems that do multi-spectral fusion, but I don't think that ATFLIR did it, at least in 2004.
     
  34. Josquin

    Josquin Member

    Quote from the Boston Globe article:

    https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2...m-seriously/MtfbLrDhNJRrO0MEzJRbDM/story.html

    What to make of this? How can the crew that took the tic tac video not have seen with their own eyes what the TV camera footage was seeing?
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2018
  35. deirdre

    deirdre Moderator Staff Member

    the FLIR had a zoom? and the pilots weren't using binoculars?
     
  36. Josquin

    Josquin Member

    So 1.0x zoom on the FLIR is not equivalent to naked eye?
     
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  37. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    The 1.0x zoom refers to digital zoom. The actual magnification comes from the focal length. Of which the widest is 6°, and the ones used were 1.5° and 3°, mostly 1.5°. The image is highly magnified. It's hard to draw comparisons to the naked eye, but it's roughly 10x magnification.
     
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  38. Josquin

    Josquin Member

    Thanks for the clarification. So the object must have been far enough away to not have been visible with the naked eye. According to Fravor, an object the size of the Tic Tac would have been visible at least out to 10 miles that day, if not more. So that's good evidence that the object in the video is quite far away.
     
  39. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    Also consider that there might have been different objects or causes for:

    A) Visually observed objects
    B) Objects videos on FLIR
    C) Radar returns

    And possibly difference within those instances. It's a mistake to look for one cause to explain everything.
     
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  40. Josquin

    Josquin Member

    Agreed -- In fact, I find it more likely that the object in the video is NOT the Tic Tac that Fravor encountered. And the distance to the object in the video seems to be a crucial piece of information that needs to be established before one can make a conclusion one way or another.
     
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