# "GO FAST" Footage from Tom DeLonge's To The Stars Academy. Bird? Balloon?

The experts in the clip above are:
Lt Col Chris Cook (ret)

Ross Aimer, commercial pilot (ret) NTSB consultant.

We only hear from Cook, who says:
"That thing is hauling ass"
"it's a little less than two thirds the speed of sound"
"If this were some type of aircraft with a conventional propulsion system, we'd definitely see some type of heat signature. Everything we know about propulsion systems is they create an intense amount of heat."

The experts in the clip above are:

based on your video proof, I think you should add the word alleged or put "experts" in quotes.

Mick,

There's one thing I'm having trouble understanding about your speed estimate. During the time when the camera is locked onto the target the camera angles only change by a couple of degrees. If the target was flying much slower than the aircraft wouldn't the camera need to adjust its orientation much more to keep the target in the same position in the image ?

Mick,

There's one thing I'm having trouble understanding about your speed estimate. During the time when the camera is locked onto the target the camera angles only change by a couple of degrees. If the target was flying much slower than the aircraft wouldn't the camera need to adjust its orientation much more to keep the target in the same position in the image ?

It changes from 43° to 58°. Remember it's far away, 4.4 to 3.4 nautical miles, so that reduces the angles.

It changes from 43° to 58°

You're right, I somehow misread those numbers the last time I watched the video.

Ross Aimer, commercial pilot (ret) NTSB consultant.
I contacted Ross, saying:
Captain Aimer, I don't think you commented on-screen regarding the "Go-Fast" video. In conjunction with several others I've done extensive analysis of this video. This seems to show quite conclusively that the object was at 13,000 feet and moving well under 100 knots. This is directly at odds with what was presented in the show "Unidentified" which claimed it was at low altitude and "2/3 the speed of sound". I would appreciate your comments on this. The attached video briefly describes the analysis.
Content from External Source
He replied on the Youtube comments for the video:

Ross Aimer
33 minutes ago
Mr. West, l normally don’t comment or argue with someone who wants to make a name for themselves by debunking someone else’s theories. However, since you privately asked, l break that rule for a minute. My expertise is not on military jets or operations. However, with 55 years in commercial aviation and a degree in Aerospace Engineering, l could perhaps talk about aerodynamics and theory of flight. Even if your calculations are relevant, what balloon have you seen that can do about 100 knots at 13,000’ and out maneuver an F-18 jumping in and out of water? Although l have never seen a UFO or something I could not explain, l was never so arrogant and stupid to think our tiny little planet is the only one in this vast universe with intelligence!
Content from External Source

He replied on the Youtube comments for the video
Wow.

"even if your calculations are relevant" ??? Kinda an odd thing for an Aerospace Engineer to say.

does the show say the object was jumping in and out of the water? How can an object at 13,000 feet be simultaneously jumping in and out of the water? Is he talking about a different sighting?

Not a very professional response.

Kinda an odd thing for an Aerospace Engineer to say.
I was a little taken aback, but he's not an engineer, he's a retired pilot. He got a BS in Aerospace Engineering in the 1960s. He's had a solid career as a pilot and flight trainer but retired from that in 2009.

His LinkedIn page says:

"Pilots for 9/11 Truth" is a bit of a red flag, as they are kind of rabid no-plane hit the Pentagon types, and have a variety of other bizarre ideas. I'd expect a professional to steer away from them. But at least he has the disclaimer.

So he certainly has a lot of aviation experience, but I don't think he seems like someone who could actually analyze this video in any useful way.

I don't like to point fingers at people. But if someone is presented as an expert, and that is used as evidence of something, then their expertize should be verified.

I emailed him with:
Hi Ross,

Thank you for your reply via YouTube, which I include below, for reference.

I absolutely agree with you that it's very unlikely that we are alone in the vast universe. However, I wanted to restrict my questions to this one "Go Fast" video segment, in particular, the claims made on the show where you appeared as an expert.

The video does NOT show anything jumping in and out of the water. In fact, it shows an object maintaining an altitude of around 13,000 feet.

The velocity is not 100 knots. It's difficult to pin an exact figure on it, but it is almost certainly less than 50 knots, and possible in the 20-40 knot range. As you know 50 knots is a not-unreasonable reasonable differential in wind velocity between 25,000 feet and 13,000 feet, so a balloon drifting in the wind might explain it. Another possibility is a large seabird, as the size analysis seems to indicate something around 6 feet across.

Could you possibly supply some details regarding the analysis you did? Did you take any measurements? Did you perform any modeling or geometric analysis?

Finally, there's a moment on the show when Chris Cook says "it's a little less than two-thirds the speed of sound". This was portrayed as being about the object, however, the jet's speed was on display as 0.62 M, which is also "it's a little less than two-thirds the speed of sound", so it seems like the show producers might have inadvertently taken this number and applied it to the object, which actually seems much slower. Can you confirm this? I attach a video excerpt of this moment.

Thank you very much for your help in resolving this matter,

Regards,

Mick west.
Content from External Source

#### Attachments

• E04 hauling ass clips.mp4
1 MB · Views: 853
I was a little taken aback, but he's not an engineer, he's a retired pilot

kinda an odd thing for a pilot to say too. no?

What seabird is that large and flies at 13,000 feet over open water? None that I can dig up. Albatrosses are large, but fly very low where the air is denser. Plus they do not fly in long straight lines, they swoop up and down endlessly.

Herring Gulls are smaller, and fly around at 50- 100 feet on average (up to 1,000 feet when need to clear obstacles)

Looks more like a balloon than a bird, no?

Last edited:
Anthony Lappé, the showrunner for Unidentified responded to a question regarding Go Fast:

The main response from TTSA-footage believers is relentless appeals to alleged expert authority, with no footage analyses provided to support their appeals. Just shut up, listen and believe. And put that calculator down!

I was a little taken aback, but he's not an engineer, he's a retired pilot.
They've elevated pilots to demigods, all-knowing experts by default. Does a professional driver have unquestionable authority to identify all things seen from a car? "I've been driving cars for 30 years, so I can instantly identify anything seen from my driver seat and can never be uncertain about anything I see." Um, no!

What seabird is that large and flies at 13,000 feet over open water? None that I can dig up. Albatrosses are large, but fly very low where the air is denser. Plus they do not fly in long straight lines, they swoop up and down endlessly.

Herring Gulls are smaller, and fly around at 50- 100 feet on average (up to 1,000 feet when need to clear obstacles)

Looks more like a balloon than a bird, no?
Looking back to discussions we had here on that, I find Brian Vincent cited a listing of maximum altitudes of birds, and 13,000 ft is actually not out of the question for birds. Though my sense is it's more likely a balloon than bird.

See: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_birds_by_flight_heights

Looking back to discussions we had here on that, I find Brian Vincent cited a listing of maximum altitudes of birds, and 13,000 ft is actually not out of the question for birds. Though my sense is it's more likely a balloon than bird.

See: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_birds_by_flight_heights

But vultures, cranes and other large high flying birds would not be doing it over the open ocean.

The Frigatebird is a very large seabird that has been shown to fly up to 12,000 feet, but it's unclear whether their domain would overlap with the Roosevelt carrier group location when the gofast video was made. If the video was taken not too far off the Florida coast, it just might be in range. No way to know for sure.

But yea, my hunch would be balloon.

Last edited:
I've not seen the full segment (is it available anywhere?), did they pull the classic ask them a question about one thing and then portray it as an answer to a different question, i.e. ask them about the jet's speed then represent it as the speed of the object?

Also what was our eventual conclusion about FoV? didn't we come with a an even narrower FoV than we first assumed based on the specs of the camera i.e. 0.7 rather than 1.5?

Last edited:
What seabird is that large and flies at 13,000 feet over open water? None that I can dig up. Albatrosses are large, but fly very low where the air is denser. Plus they do not fly in long straight lines, they swoop up and down endlessly.

Herring Gulls are smaller, and fly around at 50- 100 feet on average (up to 1,000 feet when need to clear obstacles)

Looks more like a balloon than a bird, no?

Canada goose in the winter? The Gimbal video was taken on January 20, and the Go Fast video around that time as well.

One of the pilots talked about "little guys" flying in a V formation.
In Episode 4 Graves claims to have seen an extended version of the gimbal video and said that the Gimbal object was much larger than the "little guys" which flew ahead of it in a V formation, then flew off before the video that we see.

The main response from TTSA-footage believers is relentless appeals to alleged expert authority, with no footage analyses provided to support their appeals. Just shut up, listen and believe. And put that calculator down!

They've elevated pilots to demigods, all-knowing experts by default. Does a professional driver have unquestionable authority to identify all things seen from a car? "I've been driving cars for 30 years, so I can instantly identify anything seen from my driver seat and can never be uncertain about anything I see." Um, no!

I know a retired aerospace engineer who thought the "mystery missile" off the coast of California was a solid-propellant rocket and said, "Those who say otherwise don't know what they're talking about." I pointed him to the Contrail Science article and video about it.

He replied on the Youtube comments for the video:

Ross Aimer
33 minutes ago
Mr. West, l normally don’t comment or argue with someone who wants to make a name for themselves by debunking someone else’s theories. However, since you privately asked, l break that rule for a minute. My expertise is not on military jets or operations. However, with 55 years in commercial aviation and a degree in Aerospace Engineering, l could perhaps talk about aerodynamics and theory of flight. Even if your calculations are relevant, what balloon have you seen that can do about 100 knots at 13,000’ and out maneuver an F-18 jumping in and out of water? Although l have never seen a UFO or something I could not explain, l was never so arrogant and stupid to think our tiny little planet is the only one in this vast universe with intelligence!
Content from External Source

He conflates the Go Fast object with the Nimitz tic tac when he talks about outmaneuvering an F-18 and jumping in and out of water.

By the way, DARPA's new balloons caused UFO sightings a few days ago.
"Three Days Ago, DARPA Launched Some Balloons. Then People Started Seeing UFOs."
https://www.popularmechanics.com/military/research/a28136673/darpa-alta-ufo-sightings/
ALTA’s mission is to “develop and demonstrate a high altitude lighter-than-air vehicle capable of wind-borne navigation over extended ranges,” according to the program’s brief description on its bare-bones website. ALTA balloons, which don’t have independent propulsion, can navigate changing altitudes in excess of 75,000 feet. ALTA is also developing a Winds Aloft Sensor (WAS), which will send real-time stratospheric wind measurements back to DARPA.
Content from External Source

Last edited:
Hi.

I am looking into the gofast video myself.

Regarding the angle measure on the left side of the video, which I've read as described as the lookpoint elevation, or angle relative to the horizon, does anybody know exactly what is meant by that?

Is it the angle relative to the plane perpendicular to the downward direction? Is it the angle relative to the true horizon, which would depend on your altitude? Or is it possible that it is measured against the aircraft's orientation?

I'm new here, by the way.

Hi.

I am looking into the gofast video myself.

Regarding the angle measure on the left side of the video, which I've read as described as the lookpoint elevation, or angle relative to the horizon, does anybody know exactly what is meant by that?

Is it the angle relative to the plane perpendicular to the downward direction? Is it the angle relative to the true horizon, which would depend on your altitude? Or is it possible that it is measured against the aircraft's orientation?

I'm new here, by the way.

You should read this entire thread, there is detailed discussion of what the measurements are from the HUD obviously it's hard to get information on military hardware but we believe it to be the horizon.

You should read this entire thread, there is detailed discussion of what the measurements are from the HUD obviously it's hard to get information on military hardware but we believe it to be the horizon.

I just looked through the thread again but I've missed the discussion on exactly the meaning of that angle measure. I assume the angle is relative to the horizontal (i.e. perpendicular to downward direction). But I just want to be sure it isn't actually relative to the real horizon.

edited for clarity.

Last edited:
I just looked through the thread again but I've missed the discussion on exactly the meaning of that angle measure. I assume the angle is relative to the horizon (i.e. perpendicular to downward direction). But I just want to be sure it isn't actually relative to the real horizon.
The most detailed docs are actually for a simulator version, which I assume are based on the real thing:
Lookpoint Elevation Indication - The FLIR's current elevation angle in degrees relative to the horizon is displayed here. Negative values are below the horizon and positive values are above.
Content from External Source
I'd assumed this mean relative to horizontal. If it were the real horizon then adds nearly 3° to the angle relative to horizontal.

....
I'd assumed this mean relative to horizontal. If it were the real horizon then adds nearly 3° to the angle relative to horizontal.

I can't think of a reason why it should be measured against the real horizon as opposed to the horizontal. So I guess I will assume it is measured against the horizontal, and move along.

It would be interesting to see if the various videos can be recreated in simulators such as DCS-World which has a F/A-18C.

Looks like MS FSX with the Superbug pack has a simulated ATFLIR pod.

It would be interesting to see if the various videos can be recreated in simulators such as DCS-World which has a F/A-18C.

Metabunk member Getoffthisplanet simulated Go Fast in 3ds Max.
https://www.metabunk.org/posts/220906

The film The Nimitz Enounters re-creates the tic tac chase. Here's the part where the tic tac "mirrors" the pilot. Notice how it's hard to tell whether the tic tac is actually moving in a circle or just staying still in the center like a balloon.

Source: https://youtu.be/PRgoisHRmUE?t=1003

3DS MAX is one thing, but you are making uneducated assumptions on the camera tech, I made the Blender GOFAST FLIR parallax demonstration Mick linked in his YT video.

Some of the flight simulators have simulated versions of the ATFLIR cameras similar to those used in the 3 TTSA videos. It would be interesting to see what they look like someone were to fly and track a small slow moving object or zoom in on a distant jet and roll the plane. It might be that the IR stuff is not simulated correctly in them though i.e. the artifacts don't show because the simulations are not accurately the representing heat and flaw of IR cameras and are maybe just applying a different texture.

This video would seem to indicate that it's just a different shader or texture applied for FLIR.

Last edited:
3DS MAX is one thing, but you are making uneducated assumptions on the camera tech, I made the Blender GOFAST FLIR parallax demonstration Mick linked in his YT video.

Some of the flight simulators have simulated versions of the ATFLIR cameras similar to those used in the 3 TTSA videos. It would be interesting to see what they look like someone were to fly and track a small slow moving object or zoom in on a distant jet and roll the plane. It might be that the IR stuff is not simulated correctly in them though i.e. the artifacts don't show because the simulations are not accurately the representing heat and flaw of IR cameras and are maybe just applying a different texture.

This video would seem to indicate that it's just a different shader or texture applied for FLIR.

If you want to simulate the glare from the engine and the camera roll, I'm not sure if even DIRSIG can do that.

This might have come up before and I've forgotten, but I'd been assuming that the "Lookpoint Azimuth Indication"

Was relative to the forward axis of the jet. But I see here:
Lookpoint Azimuth Indication - The FLIR's lookpoint angle in degrees left or right of aircraft ground track. The numeric value is followed by the letter R or L if the azimuth is to the left or right of ground track, respectively.
Content from External Source
i.e. it's the heading relative to the absolute direction of travel, not the forward facing axis of the page.

Then there's the dot, which I briefly looked at for different reasons, and then forgot.

I thought that was just a visual indication of the direction of the camera relative to the plane?

Might be useful to track that in After Effects. It's finer grained than the ° numbers, and could tell us something about the ground tracking mode which confuses people.

It appears this dot is actually relative to the structure of the plane - i.e. it indicates where the pilot would look. It does seem to be different to the Lookpoint Azimuth. Like here it's off by 1.6° not a lot though.

I'm not sure if this difference in my assumptions is relevant, but when winds come into play, it could be. Maybe for Nimitz.

I'm noticing something that seems a bit odd with the gofast video that I haven't seen discussed before.

It appears that the target object (which is wider than it high) tends to maintain an orientation that is aligned with the image axes, while its direction of travel is diagonal to those axes.

Here is an example from frame 500:

It seems unlikely that an airborne object (whether self-propelled or wind driven) would maintain such an orientation.

One possibility is that the actual target object is smaller than the resolution of the camera and the form we are seeing is actually the camera's point-spread function (PSF) - ie. it's response to a point source, which may be diffraction limited.

It appears that the target object (which is wider than it high) tends to maintain an orientation that is aligned with the image axes, while its direction of travel is diagonal to those axes.

It's direction of apparent travel. As noted extensively in this thread, the object is half-way between the camera and the ocean, so the majority of its apparent motion is the parallax effect from the motion of the jet.

For comparison, see this hawk, which seems to be flying in a direction different to the direction it is facing:

The apparent shape of the object is worth noting though, and one of the things that makes me sway back towards "bird" rather than "balloon".

It's direction of apparent travel.

Yes, OK. But doesn't it still seem odd that the object's orientation (even, for example, if stationary) would exactly line up with the image axes (for at least a significant portion of the tracking time) ?

Last edited:
Yes, OK. But doesn't it still seem odd that the objects orientation (even, for example, if stationary) would exactly line up with the image axes (for at least a significant portion of the tracking time) ?

I think you can't really judge much on an orientation other than it appears to be wider than it is high and it appears to be oriented horizontal (i.e. parallel to the actual horizon). There's just way to much noise in there to get much out. Be wary of looking at individual frames too, here's a couple of frames later:

I think you can't really judge much on an orientation other than it appears to be wider than it is high and it appears to be oriented horizontal (i.e. parallel to the actual horizon). There's just way to much noise in there to get much out. Be wary of looking at individual frames too, here's a couple of frames later:

So the go-fast is a TIE fighter?

So the go-fast is a TIE fighter?
No, the bars on either side are part of the ATFLIR screen display, indicating that the object is being tracked

No, the bars on either side are part of the ATFLIR screen display, indicating that the object is being tracked

you are no fun

you are no fun
I've had far too many jokes misinterpreted as being serious. Hence #12 in the General Guidelines:

https://www.metabunk.org/posting-guidelines.t2064/

12. Avoid Humor and Sarcasm. Everyone likes a chuckle, but not everyone recognizes humor. It gets in the way of communication. Just say what you mean.​

Here's a possibly helpful side-by-side of Mick's parallax demo and Go Fast...

To reduce irrelevant difference, I sorta matched color.

"Go Fast" came up again on the Joe Rogan podcast with Jeremy Corbell last week (timestamp around 00:54:55).

The main point of contention seems to be that the object appears cooler than the ocean surface, and a bird would be warmer than the ocean. Is this necessarily the case, or could the ocean appear hotter in IR because it is reflecting sunlight? Or is it simply that the ocean off the east coast can get pretty warm, and birds' feathers provide very good thermal insulation?

Is this necessarily the case, or could the ocean appear hotter in IR because it is reflecting sunlight? Or is it simply that the ocean off the east coast can get pretty warm, and birds' feathers provide very good thermal insulation?
The latter. Most of what is reflected off water is not direct sunlight, but would be open sky, which is very cold. So we are really looking at the emitted infrared from the water surface. So it's the temperature right at the surface (i.e. not even the temperature of water you would swim in near the surface, but the top 1/2 inches of water, heated by the sun and contact with the air.

The object is at 13,000 feet. Given the average lapse rate of 3.5°F per 1,000 feet, then that's 45°F colder than the air at sea level. So if it was a bird, then the air around the bird would be colder than the sea surface, and it seems quite plausible that the outer layer of feathers of a bird accustomed to flying at that altitude would be at a similar temperature to the air.

Very well insulated birds like penguins can actually appear COLDER than the surrounding environment.

https://www.wired.com/2013/03/infrared-penguins/

Emperor Penguins with blue bellies, green beaks, and red eyes huddle over a patch of black snow – a multicolored Antarctic landscape, as seen through the eye of an infrared thermal imager.

The psychedelic colors, which correspond to different temperatures, reveal that much of a penguin’s outer surface is cooler than the surrounding air – except, of course, for their unfeathered eyes, beaks, and feet.

“Most of the body that is covered by thick plumage was found to be, on average, 4 to 6 degrees C colder than surrounding air temperature,” said biophysical ecologist Dominic McCafferty of the University of Glasgow. Only the birds’ eyes measured above freezing. “At first, we were very surprised by this discovery,” he said.
Content from External Source
This is not to say a bird is very likely, however it is possible. But I'm still keeping "balloon" at the top of the list.

It does mean that Corbell's objection to the bird theory is specious. He's thinking the IR would show the core temperature of the bird, and that as it's showing something colder than the ocean surface then the bird would not survive.

But IR shows the surface temperature of things. It shows the surface of the ocean (not the temperature even one foot down) and it shows the surface of a bird or a balloon, not the internal temperature.

The paper "RADIOMETRIC DETERMINATION OF FEATHER INSULATION AND METABOLISM OF ARCTIC BIRDS" studied the difference between internal temperature and feather temperature seen on thermal cameras.
https://www.jstor.org/stable/30152838

They found stark differences of as much as 80°C (144°F relative temperature) With large birds in a -40°C (-40°F) having an internal body temperature of +40°C (104°F) but an external body area temperature on the thermal camera of -40°C (104°F), the same as the surrounding air.

Again, I think a balloon is more likely, mostly because of the radar return. However, I'm not ruling out a large bird as the object in GOFAST.

Replies
54
Views
6K
Replies
5
Views
2K
Replies
0
Views
786