# A Gimbal Glare Explainer

#### Mick West

Staff member
My Gimbal videos suffer from being created in the moment, without fully understanding all the of the points that were eventually raised. Plus I wasn't very good at making video back then.

So I'd like to make a new one, just about the rotating glare hypothesis. Stopping short of 3D positioning the object (I'll leave that to @Edward Current for now) but recapping the various things people have pointed out that support the rotating glare hypothesis, and answering any objections. I'd like to only make it once

Here's what I have so far, terms items of evidence.

1. IR GLARE EXISTS - IR Glare exists in other videos, and can obscure the plane.
2. FLIR1 SIMILARITY - The start of FLIR has a star shaped glare, similar at point to the Gimbal glare
3. NOT ROTATING WITH BANK CHANGES - When the plane increases bank at 8 and 19 seconds, the horizon rotates with the plane, but the glare does not rotate - indicating it's fixed to the camera frame of reference, not the object. https://www.metabunk.org/threads/do...bunk-the-claim-that-the-object-rotates.12068/
4. BUMPS BEFORE ROTATION - When then object rotates at 23, 27, 28, and 32 seconds, the rotation is preceded by a camera bump, indicating the camera is affected by whatever causes the rotation, hence it's likely the camera pod itself. https://www.metabunk.org/threads/fl...aims-to-refute-micks-claims.11933/post-255387
5. ROTATING LIGHT PATTERNS - When the object rotates at 28 seconds, while the plane bank remains constant, a pattern of light across the frame (but only visible against the sky) also rotates. (Originally here, but bit visualizations done by Goddard)
6. MATCHES NEEDED TRAVERSAL ROTATION - The amount of rotation of the object, while intermittent, follows the graph of expected rotation needed for the main roll axis to traverse the gimbal singularity (i.e crossing 0° roll at a 2° pitch) https://www.metabunk.org/threads/gi...lines-of-bearing-and-or-dcs.11836/post-262598
7. The video is called "Gimbal" by the US Navy, suggesting they might think the gimbal in the camera was related to what is shown.

I'd also like to give correct credits for the development of these ideas, so would appreciate pointers to other instances, before or after the ones linked above, including on other sites.

Also, what are the main objections that need addressing? Just about the glare and the rotation - not "but they would have known if a plane was there", which is a different issue.

#### Mendel

##### Senior Member.
You definitely need to adress the two-tiered nature of the system, i.e. the ATFLIR gimbal is not rotating continuously, but only when the mirror system exceeds some threshold. The complementary objection is that the gimbal should always be moving, and does so in some simulation games.

#### Ravi

##### Senior Member.
You definitely need to adress the two-tiered nature of the system, i.e. the ATFLIR gimbal is not rotating continuously, but only when the mirror system exceeds some threshold. The complementary objection is that the gimbal should always be moving, and does so in some simulation games.
Good point, as it relates to point 4 of Mick's list above. I feel this is an important clue/hint/proof.

#### Itsme

##### Active Member
My Gimbal videos suffer from being created in the moment, without fully understanding all the of the points that were eventually raised. Plus I wasn't very good at making video back then.

So I'd like to make a new one, just about the rotating glare hypothesis. Stopping short of 3D positioning the object (I'll leave that to @Edward Current for now) but recapping the various things people have pointed out that support the rotating glare hypothesis, and answering any objections. I'd like to only make it once

Here's what I have so far, terms items of evidence.

1. IR GLARE EXISTS - IR Glare exists in other videos, and can obscure the plane.
I hope you allow me to play the devil's advocate in this and not block me from posting.

I saw examples of spikes in the ATFLIR, yes, but have not seen any convincing examples of glare. The Sukhoi exhaust plume is misidentified as glare. Other FLIR examples, not of the ATFLIR, like the jets about to enter a steep banking curve, could be caused by engaging afterburners just before entering the curve since the stall speed of the jet is much higher while banking and the pilot needs to be sure the jet speed exceeds the stall speed.
2. FLIR1 SIMILARITY - The start of FLIR has a star shaped glare, similar at point to the Gimbal glare
There is no proof the start of the FLIR1 is glare, so you cannot use it to 'prove' the GIMBAL is glare.
3. NOT ROTATING WITH BANK CHANGES - When the plane increases bank at 8 and 19 seconds, the horizon rotates with the plane, but the glare does not rotate - indicating it's fixed to the camera frame of reference, not the object. https://www.metabunk.org/threads/do...bunk-the-claim-that-the-object-rotates.12068/
This is a very subtle effect and really depends on how you determine where the horizon is exactly. The clouds are not a stable indicator and the horizon indicator of the jet might be inaccurate as well.
4. BUMPS BEFORE ROTATION - When then object rotates at 23, 27, 28, and 32 seconds, the rotation is preceded by a camera bump, indicating the camera is affected by whatever causes the rotation, hence it's likely the camera pod itself. https://www.metabunk.org/threads/fl...aims-to-refute-micks-claims.11933/post-255387
Yes, this is remarkable.
5. ROTATING LIGHT PATTERNS - When the object rotates at 28 seconds, while the plane bank remains constant, a pattern of light across the frame (but only visible against the sky) also rotates. (Originally here, but bit visualizations done by Goddard)
6. MATCHES NEEDED TRAVERSAL ROTATION - The amount of rotation of the object, while intermittent, follows the graph of expected rotation needed for the main roll axis to traverse the gimbal singularity (i.e crossing 0° roll at a 2° pitch) https://www.metabunk.org/threads/gi...lines-of-bearing-and-or-dcs.11836/post-262598
But the gimbal needs to rotate much further than the object..
7. The video is called "Gimbal" by the US Navy, suggesting they might think the gimbal in the camera was related to what is shown.
Yes, and the object rotation seems a bit 'mechanical' in nature.
But why was this one not mentioned as 'solved' in the UAP report released recently? I think it's because they had other sensor data that could not be explained easily.
I'd also like to give correct credits for the development of these ideas, so would appreciate pointers to other instances, before or after the ones linked above, including on other sites.

Also, what are the main objections that need addressing? Just about the glare and the rotation - not "but they would have known if a plane was there", which is a different issue.

#### Mendel

##### Senior Member.
But why was this one not mentioned as 'solved' in the UAP report released recently?
Because maybe they haven't identified the UAP. Perhaps it was a Russian or Chinese jet?

Also, which report identified this video as solved or unsolved? The report of June (?) last year did not reference individual incidents.

#### DavidB66

##### Active Member
I saw examples of spikes in the ATFLIR, yes, but have not seen any convincing examples of glare
I'm not sure what Itsme means by the distinction between 'spike' and 'glare'. A glare may or may not have projecting spikes; if it does, the spike is part of the glare, not something separate. Perhaps 'spikes' in an image can be caused by something other than glare, but I can't offhand think of any examples. (Not counting actual physical spikes!)
As for 'convincing examples of glare', the most striking example I recall is in a military video from a plane looking down at the ground, in black-hot IR (not necessarily ATFLIR), when a fire of some kind on the ground comes into view. A long black glare - if not a spike! - can be seen projecting from the fire in the IR image. It also rotates, showing that in at least some FLIR systems rotating glare is a possibility. Unfortunately I can't recall the name of the video, but I'm pretty sure I have seen it here on Metabunk (linking to YouTube), so I hope someone recognises my description.
There are also example of glare in that 'Tomcatters' video, which I found convincing, but Itsme may be harder to convince.

[Added: there may be some disagreement or confusion about terminology in this field. I see that Wikipedia has a separate article headed 'Diffraction Spike', and gives several possible causes (see here):

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diffraction_spike

In so far as 'spikes' are due to diffraction effects, I would be inclined to classify them as a form of glare, but there doesn't seem to be any hard and fast definition of 'glare'. I have found some online sources which include lens flares under the heading of 'glare'. Other sources prefer the term 'bloom' to glare, but 'bloom' is also used more specifically to describe a soft diffused light. There may also be disagreement about the causes of certain effects. I had assumed that 'glare' (or bloom) is always an effect of diffraction , but this source (and probably others) attribute it to a kind of overloading of the sensor:

Blooming happens when a large amount light gets focused to a single point on your camera’s image sensor. This can create so much [electrical] charge that it actually bleeds from pixel to pixel until it eventually spreads out

Source here: https://www.digital-photo-secrets.com/tip/1175/how-to-avoid-blooming/

This sounds plausible enough, but I don't know if it is scientifically established.

In view of the differences in terminology, I think it is important for Mick's new video to be clear what his usage of 'glare' does and doesn't cover, and what he thinks causes it. Some people seem to think he only means cases where there is some dirt or smear on the lens or lens cover, but I don't think that was ever the intention. ]

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#### Itsme

##### Active Member
I'm not sure what Itsme means by the distinction between 'spike' and 'glare'. A glare may or may not have projecting spikes; if it does, the spike is part of the glare, not something separate. Perhaps 'spikes' in an image can be caused by something other than glare, but I can't offhand think of any examples. (Not counting actual physical spikes!)
As for 'convincing examples of glare', the most striking example I recall is in a military video from a plane looking down at the ground, in black-hot IR (not necessarily ATFLIR), when a fire of some kind on the ground comes into view. A long black glare - if not a spike! - can be seen projecting from the fire in the IR image. It also rotates, showing that in at least some FLIR systems rotating glare is a possibility. Unfortunately I can't recall the name of the video, but I'm pretty sure I have seen it here on Metabunk (linking to YouTube), so I hope someone recognises my description.
The rotating spikes you see in that military video are typical lens flares, probably caused by the lens in the fixed (i.e. non-rotating) part of the ATFLIR. The claim here, however, is that the rotating part of the ATFLIR is the cause of the glare, not the lens.

But this rotating part is set up like an off-axis three mirror anastigmat, with the rays that land on every individual pixel crossing the entire surface of the ATFLIR wind screen. There is no plausible optical explanation for any glare occuring in the rotating part of the optics that ends up like the gimbal object in the final image.

So, yes, I think the lens in the fixed part of the ATFLIR could cause glare in wide angle mode on very bright objects, when sufficient light hits this part of the optics. But this glare would not rotate in sync with the rotating gimbal since the derotation device in front of this lens essentially makes the gimbal rotation invisible to this lens.

I think the name 'GIMBAL' for the video could have come from someone who had the same initial analysis in mind, i.e., the rotation seen is caused by the gimbal. But further analysis of this case, combining it with other sensor data, probably made it a less likely explanation, which is why it is still in the 'unidentified' group of the government UAP report.

#### Mick West

Staff member
I saw examples of spikes in the ATFLIR, yes, but have not seen any convincing examples of glare. The Sukhoi exhaust plume is misidentified as glare. Other FLIR examples, not of the ATFLIR, like the jets about to enter a steep banking curve, could be caused by engaging afterburners just before entering the curve since the stall speed of the jet is much higher while banking and the pilot needs to be sure the jet speed exceeds the stall speed.
I think your "IR glare is actually just hot gases" theory is baseless, obviously wrong. It's been argued to death elsewhere, and I think it's perfectly obvious that IR glare exists, with numerous examples that cannot be anything else (e.g. Concord) - both of the "shpe. It's also strongly supported by the Gimbal object acting exactly like a glare - especially with the early non-rotations. The only question is how laboriously the point needs to be made, and how many examples should be given (and which are the best). Possibly the best example here, and the one I should lead with, is this one, with the shots taken at essentially the same time.

There is no proof the start of the FLIR1 is glare, so you cannot use it to 'prove' the GIMBAL is glare.
What is it then? A craft that shape-shifts from a starfish to a cigar? Look at the central white shape here.

This is a very subtle effect and really depends on how you determine where the horizon is exactly. The clouds are not a stable indicator and the horizon indicator of the jet might be inaccurate as well.
It's not subtle at all. It's quite clear from both the clouds, the artificial horizon, and the light/dark horizon band just above the clouds. Once you know what to look for (and I'll obviously have to clearly lay that out) it's inescapable. I encourage you to revisit it. Scrub back and forth at 8 and 19 seconds and tell me you see the object rotate with the roll.

But the gimbal needs to rotate much further than the object..
It has not finished the traversal. Part of the issue here is that we don't know the algorithm and what it's actually trying to do in terms of keeping a lock on the target (it's primary function). The video ends too early to make a determination.

Like I said, I'd like to make the most definitive video possible, about this narrow topic. I'd really like to be able to retire the rather messy collection of older videos that make up my argument now. People need one relatively quick place to go.

#### Itsme

##### Active Member
Because maybe they haven't identified the UAP. Perhaps it was a Russian or Chinese jet?

Also, which report identified this video as solved or unsolved? The report of June (?) last year did not reference individual incidents.
No, but it stated:
We were able to identify one reported UAP with high confidence. In that case, we identified the object as a large, deflating balloon. The others remain unexplained.
So, unless the gimbal object was a large, deflating balloon it remains 'unexplained'.
And yes, that could mean anything basically.

#### Mick West

Staff member
The rotating spikes you see in that military video are typical lens flares, probably caused by the lens in the fixed (i.e. non-rotating) part of the ATFLIR. The claim here, however, is that the rotating part of the ATFLIR is the cause of the glare, not the lens.
While I'd like to include reasonable arguments in the video, if you don't start making sense then I'm going to remove you from this discussion because it's distracting from the main points. Your objections seem nonsensical and based on hand-waving assumptions ("probably caused"). Why is it probable?

#### Mick West

Staff member
So, unless the gimbal object was a large, deflating balloon it remains 'unexplained'.
And yes, that could mean anything basically.
This is an irrelevant argument as we have no idea what the UAP task force did or concluded (if anything) regarding Gimbal. It's off topic.

The topic is the rotating glare hypothesis.

#### Itsme

##### Active Member
In reply to Mick: how do you distinguish glare from out-of-focus artefacts on a distant object in an already heavily compressed and downscaled video resolution-wise (the FLIR1)?

And how do you distinguish a jet engaging it's afterburners just before starting a steep banking manouver from a glare? It's vital for the jet to ensure its speed stays well above its stall speed in a banking curve so it's not strange at all to assume they apply some extra thrust before the curve.

#### Mick West

Staff member
In reply to Mick: how do you distinguish glare from out-of-focus artefacts on a distant object in an already heavily compressed and downscaled video resolution-wise (the FLIR1)?

And how do you distinguish a jet engaging it's afterburners just before starting a steep banking manouver from a glare? It's vital for the jet to ensure its speed stays well above its stall speed in a banking curve so it's not strange at all to assume they apply some extra thrust before the curve.

How does that explain this:

We know it's not a change in exposure as the background remains the same. It can't be a gas plume, as it would stay the same size. It can only be IR glare obscuring the plane.

So what's going on here?

#### Itsme

##### Active Member
While I'd like to include reasonable arguments in the video, if you don't start making sense then I'm going to remove you from this discussion because it's distracting from the main points. Your objections seem nonsensical and based on hand-waving assumptions ("probably caused"). Why is it probable?
I'm sorry to apparently hit a nerve with you, Mick. But unless you want your video to only convince people who already are convinced, you should be open to counter-arguments. It will only increase the quality of your video in the end. It makes no sense to exclude people from the discussion who don't agree with you, that's how bubbles are created.

#### Mick West

Staff member
I'm sorry to apparently hit a nerve with you, Mick. But unless you want your video to only convince people who already are convinced, you should be open to counter-arguments. It will only increase the quality of your video in the end. It makes no sense to exclude people from the discussion who don't agree with you, that's how bubbles are created.
I don't need to convince just you. Your objections need to make more sense if they are to appeal to a wider audience. If they are just hand-waving on your part, then they don't need addressing, and are just cluttering up the process.

#### Edward Current

##### Active Member
Admittedly I have a hard time understanding the layers of rotations. I’d like the viewer to be stepped through the processes that the image goes through — here’s what’s entering the camera, then this mirror rotates it to look like this, then the plane moves and the image is rotated to look like this, then a de-rotation is applied to make it look like this (or whatever). Tying all of that to the documentation.

One thing that’s abundantly clear is that unsharp mask will turn any blurry glare or bloom into a defined shape with an apparent geometry, including the image posted above:

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#### DavidB66

##### Active Member
The rotating spikes you see in that military video are typical lens flares, probably caused by the lens in the fixed (i.e. non-rotating) part of the ATFLIR.
If you know the video I meant, could you give a link or at least its YouTube title?

As I recall, the 'rotating spikes' in that video don't look anything like 'typical lens flares', as I interpret that term. However, the definition in the Wikipedia article on 'Lens flare' which you link to is so broad it could cover almost anything.

If I understand it correctly, ATFLIR doesn't have lenses; it has mirrors and an external cover made of sapphire glass, transparent to IR.

Which part of the ATFLIR system do you think is 'non-rotating'? In the following video the external cover clearly does rotate (for example around 0:40 and 1:25 in the video). The only visible non-rotating part is the rear of the pod, which is attached to the plane. [video:]

#### markus

##### Active Member
While full positioning of the object in 3d space is too difficult and likely out of scope, there'll be viewers who are familiar with Chris Lehto's objection and will dismiss the argument on that basis especially since you never made a response in video form. Some might also be familiar with Ryan Graves' statement that the object was found at a range of 9 NM. It may be worth spending some time reviewing the lines of sight and what they imply. One particularly easy thing to note that makes the argument more definite is that the lines of sight in the last four seconds of the video diverge, which shows the object is moving right to left, which shows (assuming a straight line trajectory, which Lehto also assumed) it is beyond the intersection point. So the distance to the object must be at least 20-30 NM or so.

Establishing this range is important because it puts the glare explanation in scope as nobody can claim the airplane shape has to be visible at this range behind the combined effect of the glare and unsharp mask.

#### Mick West

Staff member
Yes, explaining the system as simply as possible is a big part of it.

The part that rolls (and makes the glare rotate) is the basically the front third of the pod, called the EOSU (Electro Optical Sensor Unit), this bit:

#### markus

##### Active Member
But the gimbal needs to rotate much further than the object..
I have refined the argument since that post, see e.g. here. The secondary mirrors are stated in patents as having some "small" angle of travel, exemplified as 5 degrees. As long as the main roll and pitch axes point to within 5 degrees or so of the object we're ok. And the roll angle you reconstruct from the glare hypothesis _does_ come out within 5 degrees of the object. This is very much a nontrivial prediction. Moreover, the 5 degrees condition comes closest to being violated near the end of the video, which is also when the pod comes closer to losing track and has to do a large correction to compensate (seen in the post as what looks like a damped oscillation). So it's all very consistent.
Other FLIR examples, not of the ATFLIR, like the jets about to enter a steep banking curve, could be caused by engaging afterburners just before entering the curve since the stall speed of the jet is much higher while banking and the pilot needs to be sure the jet speed exceeds the stall speed.
What video are you talking about? This one? If so, first note that is in fact the ATFLIR. Secondly, that explanation seems implausible to say the least: the stall speed increases with the square root of the load factor, which is 1 / cos(bank angle) for coordinated level flight. So the stall speed for a 30 degree bank (which is what it looks to be in that video) is only 7% higher than for level flight. I myself have done steep turns at a 60 degree bank angle in a Cessna 152 (LF=2). Needless to say, I didn't need afterburners to do so. Civil aviation as we know it would be impossible if simple maneuvers required afterburners to remain above stall speed.

#### Ulrich

##### Member
But why was this one not mentioned as 'solved' in the UAP report released recently? I think it's because they had other sensor data that could not be explained easily.
Yes. That’s an interesting question, imo. For sure, supplier and technical personal know how that gimbal tool works, so at least they could solve that issue partly. But they do not. According to the Wikipedia article about the report, since 2004 143 out of 144 remains just „unidentified“ without any technical glare-explanation about the most famous Ufo caught on tape.

Because maybe they haven't identified the UAP. Perhaps it was a Russian or Chinese jet?

Also, which report identified this video as solved or unsolved? The report of June (?) last year did not reference individual incidents.
They speak about 144 cases (143 unidentified/unsolved) from 2004-2021. Videos were shown to congresspeople, which were „already been made public.“. So the gimbal-video remains „unsolved“.

#### markus

##### Active Member
Yes, I'm familiar, Edward Current has been doing fantastic work there. The problem is that the reconstruction is only one possible scenario. While it would be very effective in defusing claims of the sort "the object has to be doing X" (it doesn't, look at this counterexample), it relies on making lots of assumptions about the object trajectory, the position and height of the clouds, and so on. This opens the analysis to attack and weakens the overall argument. In public discourse, it's enough to prove that the opponent is wrong about something, because if you're wrong, I'm right. It should be possible to make the analysis more rigorous by quantifying the various sources of uncertainty and carrying out the solution to the inverse problem in a more systematic way, but that would also make it less digestible for a youtube audience.

#### Mick West

Staff member
They speak about 144 cases (143 unidentified/unsolved) from 2004-2021. Videos were shown to congresspeople, which were „already been made public.“. So the gimbal-video remains „unsolved“.
Explaining that it is a rotating glare does almost nothing for identifying what the object actually is. It may well be still unsolved, but that' does not change the glare argument at all.

#### jackfrostvc

##### Active Member
The only identification evidence of the object are :

1) Elizondo obtaining the videos with a request form that described the videos he wanted as UAV, UAS an Balloons

2) The Gimbal Pilot/WSO saying in the video itself that it is a drone

#### Ulrich

##### Member
Explaining that it is a rotating glare does almost nothing for identifying what the object actually is. It may well be still unsolved, but that' does not change the glare argument at all.
I agree. Knowing how the gimbal works does not mean knowing what it is. So it can still be „unidentified“.
But it is certainly weird.

In a large part, the current UFO-hype is based on the official Pentagon-UFOs. For sure, the Gimbal-video is the most impressive one. Why? Because there you can see something UFO-like-shaped, which appears to be rotating. There is nothing else remarkable there.

And they show that video to the publicity and to congresspeople without mentioning that they know what is causing these special effects? I know, there could be reasons for that. Military confidentiality and so on. But they could take the magic from that video. Just by saying, ´that there are technical reasons for shape and rotation.

Instead of that, they leave that fire burnin. Tolerating that publicity und congresspeople spending money and time on that topic.

Are there no others battlefields? Are they bored? Its hard to believe…

#### Ulrich

##### Member
The only identification evidence of the object are :

1) Elizondo obtaining the videos with a request form that described the videos he wanted as UAV, UAS an Balloons
He already answered that in his interview with Mick. I am not an english-speaker but I think, he said, that he was forced to use usual language there. And the category „UFO“ did not exist. Something like that.

2) The Gimbal Pilot/WSO saying in the video itself that it is a drone
Yes. Same question here. If it was a drone, and the military knows it, why is this case “unidentified“? Something is wrong there.

#### jarlrmai

##### Senior Member
From what we can tell publicly telling people and thus confirming the flaws/quirks of a critical piece of frontline military tech is just something they (the US Navy/Military) are just not prepared to make any comment on at all. Possibly any sort of response no matter how small would open them up to further questions, that they would have now set a precedent for answering. Possibly also it would violate agreements with Raytheon etc.

Saying unidentified gives them plausible deniability for all scenarios, if more data comes out of side channels they can say they recently identified it, leaving it as unidentified gives them full scope to play it however they need to. Also were they not classified as "initially" unidentified? I'm shaky on the words that have been used by the actual military for any specific cases, if at all.

I am unsure what congress people have been told, whether the nuts and bolts or specifics of any case were delved into.

When you say "they show that video to the publicity" [SIC] the US government only released and confirmed (said they were real videos taken by the US Military) these videos because they were already leaked and out there, the only people actively saying they contain anything unusual is the TTSA, Luis Elizondo etc.

The UFO movement is still fairly insignificant as far as real world pressure on them releasing some classified information, I'm trying to think of a scenario where they would be forced for comment on something like this, maybe if a leaked video apparently showed a Chinese fighter jet over New York or something and they had to come clean and say it was a captured jet they controlled or a mock-up or something.

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#### Mendel

##### Senior Member.
Also were they not classified as "initially" unidentified?
Yes. And the majority is now classified as "explainable". Which is the same Mick/Metabunk did, we think it's some unidentified conventional jet-engine driven fixed-wing flying object (e.g. a jet fighter) with rotating glare caused by the gimbal system.

The gimbal explanation moves it from "what unknown physics works like this?" to "nothing special", which is why it's the core of the debunk, and it's the part we're sure of. The trajectory work supports the possibility that it's a jet flying normally at a certain distance, but it's not the only one.

The intentions of the UAPTF have been discussed elsewhere.

#### Mendel

##### Senior Member.
Explaining that it is a rotating glare does almost nothing for identifying what the object actually is.
I know what you mean, but technically....

Without the explanation, we were looking for an object that rotates as it flies, and that's hard to come by outside aerobatic performances.
With the explanation, we're looking for an object that flies, of which we know many.

That's not "almost nothing".

#### Murray

##### New Member
Yes. That’s an interesting question, imo. For sure, supplier and technical personal know how that gimbal tool works, so at least they could solve that issue partly. But they do not. According to the Wikipedia article about the report, since 2004 143 out of 144 remains just „unidentified“ without any technical glare-explanation about the most famous Ufo caught on tape.

They speak about 144 cases (143 unidentified/unsolved) from 2004-2021. Videos were shown to congresspeople, which were „already been made public.“. So the gimbal-video remains „unsolved“.
Correction: they haven't told the public what what it is. Doesn't mean they don't know.

If they don't know it's time to shut down the Pentagon because it's pretty useless at this point if they don't.

#### Ulrich

##### Member
Correction: they haven't told the public what what it is. Doesn't mean they don't know.

If they don't know it's time to shut down the Pentagon because it's pretty useless at this point if they don't.
They do not have to tell the public what it is. At the border-areas of sensor-capability there always will be UFOs. It would be enough, if they would tell the public what they know, what there is not. In particular, if time, money and lawmaking will be spend on that topic.

If they know how gimbal works, they propably/maybe know where shape and rotation come from. If they know where shape and rotation come from, they should inform congresspeople and public just about that. If they do not, maybe there are other informations we do not know yet, or the glare-theory is just wrong.

Or, these authorities have to be reformed in the public interest.

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#### jarlrmai

##### Senior Member
US Navy: Okay we're not going to tell you what GIMBAL is but it's caused by some flaws in the targeting pods optics.
Press: Are you saying our front line military has flawed equipment, that makes them see UFOs, what if they shoot down an airliner etc etc. How can they prevent another 9/11 with substandard equipment etc etc. What about these other 5 videos/photos. Are NAVY pilots fit for duty if they are seeing UFOs because of glitches.

It's hard when you are inside of it, but I don't think the UFO furore is big enough to force their hand on these videos against whatever policies that prevent them from talking about military operations/equipment.

It may also be they actually never really looked into them and the organisation internally that was sort of supposed to was the Bigelow vehicle AATIP etc that was 'compromised' by UFO proponents and/or didn't have the proper levels of access to get anywhere.

#### Ulrich

##### Member
maybe it would work in another way.

US Navy: We do not know what the gimbal-object is. Its a part of the 143 unidentified objects already mentioned in the pentagon report. We do not know what it is, but what we can say, that there are known technical reasons for shape and rotation.

Press: Are you saying our front line military has flawed equipment, that makes them see UFOs?

Navy: No, we are saying that there were 143 objects, which we can not identify, like already mentioned in the report.

They already admitted, that they have equipment and personal which see Ufos.

#### Itsme

##### Active Member
If you know the video I meant, could you give a link or at least its YouTube title?

As I recall, the 'rotating spikes' in that video don't look anything like 'typical lens flares', as I interpret that term. However, the definition in the Wikipedia article on 'Lens flare' which you link to is so broad it could cover almost anything.
You're right, 'lens flare' is a very broad term. What I mean is that this:

looks a lot like this:

If I understand it correctly, ATFLIR doesn't have lenses; it has mirrors and an external cover made of sapphire glass, transparent to IR.

Which part of the ATFLIR system do you think is 'non-rotating'? In the following video the external cover clearly does rotate (for example around 0:40 and 1:25 in the video). The only visible non-rotating part is the rear of the pod, which is attached to the plane. [video:]

I mean the part behind the derotation device. This part is physically rotating as well, yes, but the derotation device prevents the scene from rotating with respect to the optics. There is a lens in that part of the ATFLIR optics as I recall.

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#### DavidB66

##### Active Member
You're right, 'lens flare' is a very broad term. What I mean is that this

Thanks for the video clip. I'm pretty sure that is the one I meant. I remembered it as 'black hot', which just goes to show how dangerous it is to rely on memory without an objective record to back it up. Well, my memory anyway!

I would describe that spike as 'glare', and certainly not as 'lens flare'. I notice that in that clip the little black dot indicating the direction of the camera is coming up to the 'zero' position as the 'spike' rotates.

Coincidentally, I was making my own experiments with 'glare' a few days ago, using an LED flashlight as the bright light source and a Samsung Galaxy phone camera. I keep the phone in a case, designed for this model, which has a 'window' for the camera lens. Perhaps the most striking result was the pic below. I wanted to get a slight 'smear' across the lens without actually touching the camera, so I put a piece of transparent Scotch tape across the 'window' and then lightly pulled my finger across it. The photo shows at least 3 different effects. The most obvious is the long 'spike' of glare, centered on the front of the flashlight. Then there is a blotch of light towards the bottom left corner. I'm not sure what caused this - possibly some dirt or smudge on the Scotch tape which I didn't notice. Just to the right of the main blotch is a little cluster of dots of light. This is a lens flare showing a reflected or refracted image of the little LED bulbs in the flashlight. It has nothing to do with the tape, as I got the same effect in other pics before I put the tape on. Then there is a diffused 'bloom' of light around all the brightest areas. I took the photos in an otherwise unlit room, with the default settings of the camera on auto. The camera made some efforts to adjust to the brightness of the light, but it wasn't designed for this sort of exercise!

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#### Mendel

##### Senior Member.

Just to the right of the main blotch is a little cluster of dots of light. This is a lens flare showing a reflected or refracted image of the little LED bulbs in the flashlight. It has nothing to do with the tape, as I got the same effect in other pics before I put the tape on.
It's symmetric to the flashlight about the center of the image, which is typical for an internal reflection.

#### Itsme

##### Active Member
Thanks for the video clip. I'm pretty sure that is the one I meant. I remembered it as 'black hot', which just goes to show how dangerous it is to rely on memory without an objective record to back it up. Well, my memory anyway!

I would describe that spike as 'glare', and certainly not as 'lens flare'. I notice that in that clip the little black dot indicating the direction of the camera is coming up to the 'zero' position as the 'spike' rotates.

I don't know what your definition of 'glare' and 'lens flare' is, but the International Commission on Illumination (CIE) defines glare as:
"Visual conditions in which there is excessive contrast or an inappropriate distribution of light sources that disturbs the observer or limits the ability to distinguish details and objects".
Source

Lens flare is characterized as:
Lens flare happens when light is scattered or flared in a lens system, often in response to a bright light, producing a sometimes undesirable artifact in the image. The spatial distribution of the lens flare typically manifests as several starbursts, rings, or circles in a row across the image or view.
Source

So the big white non-rotating blob is glare, while the rotating spikes are lens flare.

#### DavidB66

##### Active Member
So the big white non-rotating blob is glare, while the rotating spikes are lens flare.
By those definitions, yes. The International Commission on Illumination definition of glare seems to be mainly concerned with its use in relation to lighting generally, not specifically in photography. The definition of 'lens flare' is from a Wikipedia article, which has no great authority.

So long as we know what we are talking about, the choice of definitions is secondary. For the purpose of analysing the Gimbal video, and others like it, the main consideration is whether the position of the effect is fixed in relation to the camera or to the objects in the image. In my photo, the effect that I call 'glare', and which you call 'lens flare', was fixed in relation to the camera but not the object, as I found when I moved and rotated the camera around. The little cluster of dots, on the other hand, moved around the screen when I moved the camera. In the example below, it appears as a tiny fleet of UFOs above the flashlight:

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#### Mendel

##### Senior Member.
I don't know what your definition of 'glare' and 'lens flare' is, but the International Commission on Illumination (CIE) defines glare as:

Source

Lens flare is characterized as:

Source

So the big white non-rotating blob is glare, while the rotating spikes are lens flare.

my personal definitions:
Lens flares = caused by the lens system, sharply defined artifacts, placed away from actual light source
Glare = caused by atmosphere, diffuse shape, around actual light source

The spike fits neither because
Spike = caused by the lens system, sharply defined, around actual light source