Langley AFB video on Reddit & Twitter

What are we looking at?

The video is 2~ minutes.

Original Reddit thread with video:
Source: https://www.reddit.com/r/UFOs/comments/1bk9xta/langley_afb_event_video


Description from Reddit:

On the evening of December 14th right after sunset, I was on the opposite side of James River from Langley sitting outside to watch that night’s meteor shower. At around 7:15 I began to see red blinking lights from the direction of Virginia Beach coming in high and circling north of Langley Air Force base heading west and then passing directly over the base heading east and back in the direction they came. It began as one or two coming every few minutes and at its peak, I would say there would be upwards of 5 over the base that would sometimes stop and hover directly over the base. Always blinking from white to reddish/orange. The blinking was not uniform, and these were not planes, the lights were not on the end of wings or rotors, they WERE round orbs of light. They kept a very steady speed unless they hovered over the base and their blinking would change and vary, almost like morse code. Sporadically a spotlight would come up from Langly and wave back and forth but never seemed to focus in on any of the drones. They did not act aggressively at all, just coming in, circling, and floating over the base before heading out. There were also larger UAPs that would come in one at a time much lower than the orbs (it may have been the same one circling), almost tree level, and moved along the northern edge of James right past Ft. Eustis, went over Surry Nuclear Power Plant, and then elevated and left in the same direction they all came from. These appeared reddish / orange on the bottom but had three white lights on the top and a flashing light on the leading edge. They made no sound, just like the orbs, and were close enough that I would have heard if they were helicopters. I felt like these were kind of the command control of the event. I would say everything peaked around 8:15 and by 9 I could not see any more and went in. I would also mention that despite that being a high traffic area for military and commercial planes, I did not notice any during the event.


First appearance on Twitter: Source: https://twitter.com/528vibes/status/1770852439450644635
 
Last edited by a moderator:
This must be one of the "mysterious drones" that "swarmed" Langley AFB this past December.

"The installation first observed UAS [uncrewed aerial systems] activities the evening of December 6 [2023] and experienced multiple incursions throughout the month of December. The number of UASs fluctuated and they ranged in size/configuration," a spokesperson for Langley Air Force Base told The War Zone in a statement earlier today. "None of the incursions appeared to exhibit hostile intent but anything flying in our restricted airspace can pose a threat to flight safety. The FAA was made aware of the UAS incursions."
Content from External Source
https://www.twz.com/air/mysterious-drones-swarmed-langley-afb-for-weeks
 
This must be one of the "mysterious drones" that "swarmed" Langley AFB this past December.

"The installation first observed UAS [uncrewed aerial systems] activities the evening of December 6 [2023] and experienced multiple incursions throughout the month of December. The number of UASs fluctuated and they ranged in size/configuration," a spokesperson for Langley Air Force Base told The War Zone in a statement earlier today. "None of the incursions appeared to exhibit hostile intent but anything flying in our restricted airspace can pose a threat to flight safety. The FAA was made aware of the UAS incursions."
Content from External Source
https://www.twz.com/air/mysterious-drones-swarmed-langley-afb-for-weeks

Apparently, that is linked on that reddit thread also. This one is also linked there with a NORAD commander testifying to the US Congress about this same incident with more data.


Source: https://www.reddit.com/r/UFOs/comments/1bip0ii/norad_cmdr_general_gregory_m_guillot_testifying/
 
I don't know if it's been confirmed that these were drones, but it happened a week after Christmas which means it could be people flying drones they got for Christmas (I remember reading a similar comment about this in another thread)

I do not recall seeing anything like that for Colorado, but apparently law enforcement in 16+ counties across Colorado observed and reported the incident per this article:

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2...tery-of-disappearing-swarms-in-the-us-midwest

For these multiple ongoing Langley Air Force base incursions, it may be reasonable to assume we don't know whose or what these are, unless the military is literally lying under oath to Congress in open session. They scrambled NASA observation craft and hot F-22s to deal with it.
 
There's a lot of conflation between 'UAP' and 'UAS' and with some unidentified UAS being classified as UAP which now means by proxy "Alien Spaceship" going on in the UFO world.

It never really gets called out, I don't think there's any reason to thing the US military thinks these things are anything other than a variety of human made UAS/drones/quadcopters, problematic when near a military base, but not alien spacecraft.

It happened with the "green triangles" as well they were incorrectly recorded as UAS by the same people who failed to identify them as stars , planets and a plane. But I don't think they thought they were alien spacecraft but its hard because an alien spacecraft could also technically be a UAS.
 
Standard stuff to point out:
  • Being seen in the direction of the base doesn't necessarily mean being *over* the base.
  • It's not clear that the video has any relation to the reports of drones (flying a high-altitude capable, sensor-rich aircraft like the WB-57 in response to the incursions suggests we're not talking about things buzzing the tower).
  • Just because the observer ruled out helicopters or other craft doesn't mean they're not helicopters or other craft. (We've seen that often enough with Starlink.)
 
"they WERE round orbs of light."

Then so were most of the lights at ground level. Or so almost all lights would appear to a poorly focused camera...
IMG_2388.jpeg
 
What are we looking at?

Well, we don't see the lights hover in the video. When there are fixed landmarks visible, the lights appear to travel smoothly from right to left.

The frequency of flashes in the videos is around one second, and maybe 3 "bunched" very rapid flashes per second for some of the white lights.

This is a common rate for civil aircraft anti-collision lights, which can vary between 40 -100 cycles per minute:
8.2 Flash Characteristics. A combination of the number of light sources, beam width, speed of rotation (rotating beacons), and other factors can affect the flash frequency. Certification standards for parts 25, 27, and 29 specify a flash rate of 40 to 100 cycles per minute as viewed from a distance. A flash rate exceeding 100 but no more than 180 cycles per minute are acceptable in cases of overlapping field of coverage
Content from External Source
Advisory Circular 43-217, 12/12/2018, Anticollision Light Maintenance from the Federal Aviation Administration, U.S. Department of Transportation
PDF available here Anticollision Light Maintenance FAA 2018, and attached below as AC_43-217.

Civil aircraft usually have red beacons, top and underside of fuselage, that flash at this rate.
White lights on the wingtips and the tail also flash at this rate.
These strobing lights are called anti-collision lights.

As the quote from the FAA circular (above) states, apparent rates of flash can be higher if you're seeing more than one anti-collision light of the same colour on an aircraft at a distance (but the perceived rate has to be below 180 flashes/ minute).

(Illustration borrowed from Reddit):
civ ac lights.jpg


As well as the possibility of a higher flash rate being seen because of multiple lights, it seems some manufacturers use multiple bunched brief flashes, with one "bunch" per second or so (I didn't know this, and was a bit surprised),

Airbus and Boeing aircraft can be differentiated at night by looking at their wingtip strobe lights. Airbus aircraft have two strobe lights that flash twice in rapid succession, while Boeing aircraft have a single strobe light that flashes singularly at regular intervals.
Content from External Source
"How To Tell Airbus & Boeing Aircraft Apart In The Dark", Luke Peters and Dr. Omar Memon, updated 14 October 2023,
Simple Flying website.

Maybe the videos are simply showing civil aircraft (or military aircraft using civil lighting guidelines).
The number of flashing anti-collision lights visible, and their colour, might appear to vary as the aircraft changed in orientation and distance relative to the observer (white anti-collision lights are visible further than red).
An imperfectly-focussed camera can make a small light source look "orb-like" as I'm sure we've all seen.

The two blinking white lights, from about 2 minutes in, look like two aircraft at a considerable distance, heading in roughly the same direction.

Of course, we weren't there when the film was taken, but if the film we see is some indication of what was visible, I don't think I'd have bothered filming it. I think it's a plane (and later, two planes).
 

Attachments

  • AC_43-217.pdf
    304.2 KB · Views: 17
In this case, we have US military reports on the encounter of the 23 Jan, with the reported interference against radar lock. That is the one for which we have the sketched vessel with a central orange light. Perhaps this 23 Jan UAP was not visible from the ground and initially only on radar. No time was given, but I presume daytime given the visual reports. This one recalls the Alaska balloon or UAP events where radar-jamming was mentioned, at least initially.

The TWZ piece quotes that "The installation first observed UAS [uncrewed aerial systems] activities the evening of December 6 [2023] and experienced multiple incursions throughout the month of December." This coincides with this video, of course. I presume the military have radar tracking and other data from the reconnaissance NASA plane.

It is not clear if they are describing the same phenomena but both have military-confirmed testimony. Further, in the Colorado 2020 events, there are mainstream news videos out there which capture the sound of the drones in that event.

The novelty with these cases is we know there are better data out there but they is not available to us. The radar tracking, high def video visuals, and any recovered material, should make it perfectly clear who makes these drones or whatever they are.
 
We're looking at someone who can't tell the time. Sunset was 16:19 according to timeanddate.com.
I think you're nit-picking; "right after" sunset is an indeterminate period that I would expect to encompass the colorful show after the sun itself has gone down. Most people who wanted to see a meteor shower would keep waiting for the glow to fade before they'd expect to see meteors.
 
What are all the confirmed dates of Langely AFB events per the government and what was sunset those dates? The Reddit person also mentioned wanting to look at a meteor shower, so it was likely a clear night for sky visibility and one of the dates of the Langley events that also would have been a reasonable date for the meteor event.

Whatever ticks those boxes would be the recording night or thereabouts, plus the sunset time?
 
7:15 EST Dec 14 is 00:15 UTC Dec 15. Looking at the playback there's lots of high altitude planes that fly directly over Langley, normal traffic for that area. While it seems unlikely to explain more than a few sightings, that has caused issed before, where over-primed law enforcement mistook planes for drones.

It would be good to try to find the location of the camera. We have: "I was on the opposite side of James River from Langley" So maybe in the Carrollton area.
 
In this case, we have US military reports on the encounter of the 23 Jan, with the reported interference against radar lock. That is the one for which we have the sketched vessel with a central orange light.

But that's not this case. The Eglin AFB UAP (26 Jan 2023) has a thread here
https://www.metabunk.org/threads/eglin-afb-uap.13373/
Is there any reason to link the two?

...both have military-confirmed testimony.
We have no military-confirmed testimony to this specific event.
In fact we have no supporting evidence from anyone other than one claimant.

I presume the military have radar tracking and other data from the reconnaissance NASA plane.

I'm sure they monitor the airspace around that area as a matter of routine.
We have no idea if anything unusual was noticed by Langley AFB personnel on 14 December, or indeed if anything unusual happened on 14 December.
NASA has 3 WB-57Fs, the type referred to in the twz.com post from @Duke. Even if all 3 were available, it's unlikely that they would maintain continuous monitoring for long.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martin/General_Dynamics_RB-57F_Canberra
(Incidentally, anyone doubting that NASA has access to alien tech, maybe from a different time- the WB-57F is descended from the (UK) English Electric Canberra, first flight 1949).

The OP video doesn't show anything unusual IMHO, although the claimant's interpretation might be unusual. The lights in the video look (to me) like civil aircraft lights, on an aircraft flying (when we can see landmarks) smoothly from right to left. Maybe it's a drone displaying similar lighting.

Lots of people have drones. Some users foolishly use them in ways that inconvenience others and/ or operate them illegally. Gatwick Airport, a busy international airport in southern England, has had operations disrupted by (claimed) sightings of drones on a couple of occasions
'Sustained' drone attack closed Gatwick, airport says, BBC News, Business, 20 Feb 2019, by Tom Burridge
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-47302902;
'Suspected drone' disrupts Gatwick Airport flights, BBC News, UK, Sussex, 14 May 2023
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-sussex-65591023

Mischief-makers and people with misplaced curiosity might have flown drones over military bases. Perhaps some are flown by people looking for evidence of the US Government's recovered alien spacecraft! ;)
This could be an ongoing problem for the foreseeable future, and, like the issue of irresponsible people using laser-pointers to harass aircrew some years ago, might subside when systems to identify those guilty are developed (and when drone countermeasures are more effective/ widespread).
In the meantime, drones are a potential risk to security, to service personnel, civil aircrew and passengers, maybe others.
Unfriendly agencies might be tempted to use off-the-shelf drones for hostile reconnaissance with plausible deniability; radical/ malign users might be tempted to use drones to carry incendiaries or explosives. I believe this must be a legitimate security concern.

Description from Reddit:

Most of the "interesting" behaviour described in the Reddit post is emphatically NOT seen in the video
(following "External Source" quotes are from the Reddit post):

...coming in high and circling north of Langley Air Force base heading west and then passing directly over the base heading east and back in the direction they came.
Content from External Source
Not seen in video.
It began as one or two coming every few minutes and at its peak, I would say there would be upwards of 5...
Content from External Source
Not seen in video.
...that would sometimes stop and hover directly over the base.
Content from External Source
Not seen in video.
Sporadically a spotlight would come up from Langly and wave back and forth...
Content from External Source
Not seen in video.
The blinking was not uniform...
Content from External Source
It seems to be uniform, cycling at about 1 per second most of the time. A rate entirely consistent with civil aircraft.
The colours (white, red) are those used by civil aircraft anti-collision lights (and some other external lights).

...the lights were not on the end of wings or rotors, they WERE round orbs of light.
Content from External Source
Then so were most of the lights at ground level. Or so almost all lights would appear to a poorly focused camera...

@Ann K is spot-on. UFO enthusiasts aren't describing the ground lights as "orbs", though some have that appearance.
"...they WERE round orbs of light." -Has a bit of an "I know what I saw" feel to it; pre-empting more prosaic explanations.

If I'm not wearing lenses/ glasses, if I squint at an incoming aircraft at night it also looks like an "orb" (at least, a diffuse roughly circular illuminated thing) at first, then often I see the characteristic blinking of anti-collision lights, and I know it's a plane.
I don't often see the green navigation light unless the aircraft is low, don't know if that's a physics thing or a perception thing.

(Added, while compiling this, 19:20, late dusk; popped out for a cigarette; saw white light in sky, literally saw exactly as described in para. above, and as the aircraft approached could see -to my delight- anti-collision white lights flashing in bursts of three approx. every second like in the OP video. Don't know if this due to actual flash rate or more than one anti-collision light being visible.
As it got closer, sounded like a light propeller aircraft, but not sure. Couldn't resolve shape/ any details of aircraft.)

They did not act aggressively at all, just coming in, circling, and floating over the base before heading out.
Content from External Source
(1) Not seen in video.
(2) How does the claimed witness classify "aggressive" in this context? Phaser blasts? How can the witness characterise the behaviour or intent of unidentified flying objects of unknown origin? Maybe they released anthrax spores or Pu 239 dust. :eek:
(Don't worry. I think it's safe to say nothing bad happened).

There were also larger UAPs that would come in one at a time much lower than the orbs...
Content from External Source
Not seen in video.
I felt like these were kind of the command control of the event.
Content from External Source
In fairness, the claimed witness says "felt", but there is no explanation why he/ she came to this conclusion.

At around 7:15 I began to see red blinking lights... ...everything peaked around 8:15 and by 9 I could not see any more
Content from External Source

So at least 1 hour, maybe up to 1 hour 45 minutes of sometimes "...upwards of five" orbs plus at least one larger "UAP", in the vicinity of an airbase close to Newport News (pop. approx. 186,000). The lights supposedly also overflew Fort Eustis and a nuclear power plant, so we can reasonably expect lots of witnesses and other videos of this event.
And there's plenty of time for witnesses to bring this to other people's attention.

So where is all the corroborating evidence?
Even the single claimed witness, over this timespan, fails to film almost all of what is claimed in the Reddit post.

I would also mention that despite that being a high traffic area for military and commercial planes, I did not notice any during the event.
Content from External Source
Er, except the ones the witness appears to have filmed.

The video is undramatic. Nothing we see can't be explained by out-of-focus footage of civil aircraft-pattern lights, I think.
We don't know that the lights were civil aircraft lights, but we have no reason to believe that they weren't;
except for the accompanying Reddit description.
The Reddit description describes things that are not shown in the video, even though these things supposedly occurred over more than an hour. The claimant only chose to film the lights when they resembled aircraft lights on a steady flightpath.

No-one else witnessed this "incident" as far as we know (as at 22/03/24), which seems implausible.

Personally, I think this is a nothing-burger (horrible phrase I picked up here!)
 
Most of the "interesting" behaviour described in the Reddit post is emphatically NOT seen in the video
I need a key on my computer that types all that, swapping "report" for "Reddit post," at a single stroke. Would save a lot of time.

I think your post nailed it. Unknown person making unsubstantiated claims, which happens to be accompanied by some video that does not support the claims.
 
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