Does the beginning part of Gimbal debunk the claim that the object rotates?

Edward Current

Active Member
I received a DM from a UFOlogist, @realityseaker on Twitter, who had done some work on the Gimbal video and found something. Everyone focuses on the "flop," where the object/glare (hereafter the "blob") suddenly swivels dramatically — but his analysis suggests that the video's first 24 seconds are actually more telling. With his permission, I am looking for commentary.

He started with a version that's rotation-stabilized to keep the bars of the horizon indicator level onscreen, and also centered and translation-stabilized on the blob. He then wrote a clever little program to track the rotation of the blob's major axis. He found a strong correlation between the rotation of the blob (orange) and the roll of the aircraft (blue):
xXZVy4H3.png

To make this more visually intuitive, I overlaid a constant angle on his video, and then roughly animated it to show how the blob and aircraft roll more or less at the same times and amounts: once around 0:01, again around 0:09, and again at 0:19:


Discussion: This correlation may have escaped notice previously because, up until the "flop," the ATFLIR's de-rotation mechanism keeps the blob from rotating in the original video, even as the jet rolls. But of course, the aircraft icon in the middle of the horizon indicator also doesn't rotate in the original. They both remain equally stable, even as the horizon-indicator bars (and the real horizon) tilt. The blob and aircraft are moving together.

Broadly, the rotation of the blob relative to the horizon has two explanations. Either the rotation is local — the blob's orientation is a function of the moment-by-moment orientation of the aircraft. Or, the rotation is distant — the object actually rotates in space with a similar timing and magnitude as the aircraft's roll, either by sheer coincidence or ... well, I'll let people with more colorful imaginations fill in the rest.

Of course, the correlation goes to hell as the ATFLIR approaches 0° (starting around 14° L), when the outer and inner gimbals begin to behave/interact chaotically. Prior to that, though — and neglecting coincidence or a fantastical ad hoc hypothesis — does the correlation prove beyond any reasonable doubt that the rotation of the Gimbal blob is a locally caused phenomenon?
 
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Leonardo Cuellar

Active Member
Since there is a mechanism that tilts the image on the display according to the bank angle (possibly a CV joint), it should be analyzed if the clouds also undergo this rotation.
 
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Edward Current

Active Member
Perhaps this is one of the reasons why Gimbal is so compelling: the blob never moves while the clouds are moving, slowing down, and tilting. I think the clip would actually be less compelling if the blob rotated along with the clouds and horizon indicator — that's what we might intuitively expect if the object were actually shaped like that. Since it doesn't, it creates a subliminal impression that the blob is "following" us, like a creepy portrait painting. It's even slightly eye-shaped.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
Here I'm attempting to do a visualization of this issue with the original video, just contrast enhanced. It's centered around the slight bank at 19 seconds (starting 53:02 using the on-screen time)
The increased contrast shows a distant "horizon" line and allows you to see the position of the clouds.

Here's one look


And another with a set of lines over the clouds, showing they move roughly parallel to the artificial horizon.



The clouds rotate with the roll of the plane, but the glare does not, showing, as in the OP, that the rotation is tied to the pod rotation.

I think this type of visualization might be easier to understand than the one with a stabilized horizon?
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
What's happening here is a roll without derotation.

There's basically two reasons that the ATFLIR pod would need to roll (a rotation of the front part along the long axis).

Firstly, it rolls (and pitches) to track targets. This is an unwanted roll visually, and so the derotation corrects it. This means the scene (and the horizon) remain level, but the glare rotates. We see this mostly here in the singularity traversal, due to the shallow pitch angle (-2°)

Secondly, it rolls to correct for the roll (the bank) of the plane. This roll needs to be reflected in the display (i.e. if the plane banks left 10° then horizon needs be rotated 10°.) So the derotation is not applied to this kind of roll. But since the glare is relative to the camera, it does not rotate. That's what we see here?

Does that make sense? Is there a better way of explaining it?
 

jarlrmai

Senior Member
What's happening here is a roll without derotation.

There's basically two reasons that the ATFLIR pod would need to roll (a rotation of the front part along the long axis).

Firstly, it rolls (and pitches) to track targets. This is an unwanted roll visually, and so the derotation corrects it. This means the scene (and the horizon) remain level, but the glare rotates. We see this mostly here in the singularity traversal, due to the shallow pitch angle (-2°)

Secondly, it rolls to correct for the roll (the bank) of the plane. This roll needs to be reflected in the display (i.e. if the plane banks left 10° then horizon needs be rotated 10°.) So the derotation is not applied to this kind of roll. But since the glare is relative to the camera, it does not rotate. That's what we see here?

Does that make sense? Is there a better way of explaining it?
I think you might want to clarify that the ATFLIR is not centrally mounted on the planes roll axis so when the plane rolls the ATFLIR does not 100% share it's roll transform by movement of the whole pod alone (not sure how important this is)

I also think example pictures of cockpit eye view versus camera view might help people understand why the ATFLIR has to correct for plane movement in some cases.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
I think you might want to clarify that the ATFLIR is not centrally mounted on the planes roll axis so when the plane rolls the ATFLIR does not 100% share it's roll transform by movement of the whole pod alone (not sure how important this is)
The change in roll is the same. There's a small addition translation that's not important. I'm not sure this is worth mentioning.
 

Mendel

Senior Member.
But since the glare is relative to the camera, it does not rotate.
That's the key takeaway for me.

- Aircraft roll affects the angle of the UAP shape vs. the "camera lens".
- Derotation affects the angle of the screen vs. the "camera lens".

If the UAP itself is elleptical, then the aircraft roll should affect the UAP shape on the screen (same as it affects the clouds), but Mick's first clip shows it doesn't. Therefore, the elliptical shape is not a property of the UAP.

Because the elliptical shape is affected by derotation (and not roll), it must be a property of the "camera lens" system, e.g. caused by fine scratches on the ATFLIR window.
 

jarlrmai

Senior Member
Not why I am getting "disagree" on my comments, just trying to help Mick with things to mention in his new video to help people visualise this scenario best. It's a very difficult setup to conceptualise.
 

Edward Current

Active Member
That's the key takeaway for me.

- Aircraft roll affects the angle of the UAP shape vs. the "camera lens".
- Derotation affects the angle of the screen vs. the "camera lens".

If the UAP itself is elleptical, then the aircraft roll should affect the UAP shape on the screen (same as it affects the clouds), but Mick's first clip shows it doesn't. Therefore, the elliptical shape is not a property of the UAP.

Because the elliptical shape is affected by derotation (and not roll), it must be a property of the "camera lens" system, e.g. caused by fine scratches on the ATFLIR window.

This is something else I can show with the simulation. In addition to explicitly showing what the derotation mechanism does, I can show what the scene should look like with an actually elliptical object:
Original view — clouds, horizon indicator, and object all rotate together as plane rolls
Horizon-stabilized view — the only thing that rotates is the aircraft icon (until the end)

vs. what the scene should look like with a local elliptical glare:
Original view — clouds and horizon indicator rotate, aircraft icon and object (until the end) do not
Horizon-stabilized view — aircraft icon and object rotate together, clouds and horizon indicator do not

This will be easy, as I've already put the object on its own layer in After Effects so I'd be able to separately apply a directional blur simulating the glare (plus sharpening to produce the “envelope”). Another bonus of this approach is I can put noise on the same layer to show why the background noise rotates with the local optics/glare when the object finally “flops.”
 

Mendel

Senior Member.
Not why I am getting "disagree" on my comments,
Mick already explained that the pod shares the rotation with the aircraft. Think about it like this: if the aircraft rotates 360⁰, everything ends up in the same place, so the pod can't be any faster or slower than that.
If you twiddle a stick, it doesn't matter if you grasp it in the middle or at an end: every bit of the stick rotates the same angle.
 

Ravi

Senior Member.
This is something else I can show with the simulation. In addition to explicitly showing what the derotation mechanism does, I can show what the scene should look like with an actually elliptical object:
Original view — clouds, horizon indicator, and object all rotate together as plane rolls
Horizon-stabilized view — the only thing that rotates is the aircraft icon (until the end)

vs. what the scene should look like with a local elliptical glare:
Original view — clouds and horizon indicator rotate, aircraft icon and object (until the end) do not
Horizon-stabilized view — aircraft icon and object rotate together, clouds and horizon indicator do not

This will be easy, as I've already put the object on its own layer in After Effects so I'd be able to separately apply a directional blur simulating the glare (plus sharpening to produce the “envelope”). Another bonus of this approach is I can put noise on the same layer to show why the background noise rotates with the local optics/glare when the object finally “flops.”
Are you planning to make a video or page about all this? Or is it somewhere already?
 

DavidB66

Active Member
just trying to help Mick with things to mention in his new video to help people visualise this scenario best
Agreed it is difficult to visualise! If we are piling in with suggestions for Mick, I have a few:

1. Critics of Mick's theory claim that various experts on ATFLIR (either pilots or technicians) disagree with him on the technicalities of the system. Since the 'experts' are usually unnamed, and the details are classified and/or commercially sensitive, it is difficult to reply. While it is important to answer technical criticisms where possible, I think for most of the intended audience it will be more effective to show that, regardless of the details of the system, ATFLIR or similar systems can and do show 'glare' rotating independently of the rotation of the target object. The Gimbal video itself may not be the best evidence for this, since there the movement of the target object is precisely the point in dispute. In some other videos (e.g. by Dave Falch) the independent movement is clearer. Another example, which Mick is aware of, is this 'Tomcatters' video, around 13 minutes (incidentally, despite the title, the jets involved are apparently not Tomcats but F18s).

Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YyefSnLxjXk&t=464s


Many of the critics try to argue that independent rotation is impossible, so if one can show clear evidence from other cases that it really occurs, the battle is half-won.

2. In trying to understand and explain the rotation theory, it is necessary to take account of the way in which the image is presented to the viewer. This determines whether or not 'derotation' is needed. As Mick has shown in some of his videos, if you look at the display screen of a phone camera while rotating the phone, any 'glare' will be fixed relative to the camera, while the image will rotate relative to the screen but not to the person viewing it. If on the other hand the camera feeds the image onto a separate display screen, with the 'top' and 'bottom' of the sensor mapped onto the top and bottom of the screen, the glare would appear fixed while the image rotates on the screen and relative to the viewer. This is presumably how the ATFLIR display is set up, and why a derotation process of some kind is useful, if not essential. (Why ATFLIR uses a Heath Robinson/Rube Goldberg contraption of extra gimbals and mirrors, instead of rotating the image with software, is something of a mystery.)

3. In the 'Tomcatters' video the camera appears to be panning from right to left, while in Gimbal it is panning from left to right, yet in both cases the main rotation of the 'glare' is counter-clockwise. Some people might think this is odd. But apart from the possibility that the details of the camera may be different in the two cases, in the Gimbal case the camera is clearly looking down at the object while in the Tomcatters case it appears to be looking up. I guess that this would require a different orientation of the gimbals, and the main rotation of the pod might be in opposite directions, but in any case I think the point needs to be addressed.
 

jarlrmai

Senior Member
Mick already explained that the pod shares the rotation with the aircraft. Think about it like this: if the aircraft rotates 360⁰, everything ends up in the same place, so the pod can't be any faster or slower than that.
If you twiddle a stick, it doesn't matter if you grasp it in the middle or at an end: every bit of the stick rotates the same angle.
Not 100% though, I think people might point that out as a criticism even though it makes no real difference to the theory, the pod is mounted off centre so when the aircraft rotates the full pod assembly translates around that axis as well as rotating.

This movement only occurs when the aircraft is rolling of course.
 
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Edward Current

Active Member
Are you planning to make a video or page about all this? Or is it somewhere already?
Yes, a YouTube video with two parts. The first part will be about possible scenarios for the object, including a straight-and-level jet flying away at a lower altitude. I've posted some of those results here, but I need to revise the F-18's flight path and speed slightly. The second half will be about the rotation issue, which is a more definitive application of the simulation. There are so many uncertainties in the data that suggesting a particular object trajectory is more of a “possibly maybe” than “this is what probably happened.”

There will be questions about why the background noise in the image should rotate with the optics. My explanation is that no optical element is perfect, and while the mirrors in the ATFLIR may be some of the best reflective surfaces in the world, they are not perfect reflectors. Each mirror involved introduces some variation in the signal, which after amplification and processing winds up as digital noise in the image — noise that is correlated to the physical orientation of those surfaces.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
Correct me if I'm wrong, but the glare does rotate at 19 seconds (and at 8 seconds) — it’s just that it rotates relative to the horizon, so this rotation isn't obvious in the original video (where the horizon rotates) but can be seen in the horizon-stabilized version that’s posted at the top of this thread.
The "real" rotation there is the plane banking. This rotates the pod, which rotates the image of the horizon. The glare is not rotating unless you apply a derotation to the entire image.

It's a conceptual/communication issue that has plagued this hypothesis (or at least made it fun exercise in science communication) from the start. It's the "rotating glare" hypothesis, but might better be called the "non-rotating glare".

Type A: Rotate Camera -> Image rotates in opposite direction, glare does not rotate [Banking, First half of Gimbal video]
Type B: Rotate Camera + Apply Derotation -> Image does not rotate. Glare rotates in the same direction as camera [Tracking, Second half]
 

markus

Active Member
Correct me if I'm wrong, but the glare does rotate at 19 seconds (and at 8 seconds) — it’s just that it rotates relative to the horizon, so this rotation isn't obvious in the original video (where the horizon rotates) but can be seen in the horizon-stabilized version that’s posted at the top of this thread.

How do you account for the glare and the aircraft icon maintaining a fairly constant angle through a couple of bank changes, until we approach the singularity?
Indeed, with all the reference frames floating around it pays to be explicit. What I meant with saying the glare doesn't rotate at 19 seconds is that it doesn't rotate with respect to the display (the aircraft icon). It indeed does rotate with respect to the horizon, because the pod rotates with respect to the horizon as the aircraft banks and this motion isn't compensated.

As for your second question, it is a coincidence. To see this, look at the orange line in the "Euler angles for Gimbal" graph above: that is the pod roll axis calculated from the indicated azimuth and elevation angles. I take the indicated values of where the pod is looking and convert them to spherical coordinates with the z-axis aligned with the aircraft. It just happens that the pilot increased the bank angle at just the right rate to effectively cancel out the main roll axis rotation. The pod doesn't move with respect to the aircraft, so the glare doesn't move with respect with the aircraft icon.
 

Rocky

Active Member
I received a DM from a UFOlogist, @realityseaker on Twitter, who had done some work on the Gimbal video and found something.
I've always had an issue with the term "UFOlogist". How can you be an expert in something that doesn't exist? How do you become an expert? The only thing they can be an expert is in the lore. Stories. So maybe they should be called UFOloreologists.
 

Edward Current

Active Member
I've always had an issue with the term "UFOlogist". How can you be an expert in something that doesn't exist? How do you become an expert? The only thing they can be an expert is in the lore. Stories. So maybe they should be called UFOloreologists.
I use the term loosely to describe a UFO enthusiast who believes that at least some UFOs are breakthrough technology, or believe that Earth has been visited by ETs in our lifetime. "UFOlogist" being a bit like an astrologist — there aren't really experts in astrology, either.

Some UFOlogists are sober and measured, perfectly happy to concede certain cases as mundane when shown a good analysis, and thankful of the analyst. Other UFOlogists are fragile true-believers who seem to think of anyone who challenges their precious beliefs as bad people, liars, frauds, etc.

Realityseaker is in the first group.
 
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