Looking for help: Determine speed of Mt Wilson drone from Tesla footage?

The Sun was just above the horizon because one of the hills has just a touch of sunlight on it. So - if this is June 26, 2023 - it was about 7:30 p.m. PDT...?
vlcsnap-2023-07-02-11h20m04s303.png
I'm going to assume that date and time for the rest of this post.

Vega was in the ENE (Az/Alt +58 degrees/+25 degrees) which is sort of a match for Airplane Number One. But at this time of day Vega wouldn't be bright enough to be prominent. I don't find it credible that Vega played any role in this sighting.

The Mystery Object seems to appear out of the southern sky very low on the horizon and seems to follow a generally east to west path or perhaps even SE to NW.

If we suspect that the Mystery Object was a meteor on June 26, the first thing you'd think of is the June Bootids, which peaked on June 27. The radiant was in the NNE and high above the horizon (Az/Alt +52 degrees/+64 degrees). In other words, not in a favorable part of the sky to explain the Mystery Object as a Bootids meteor.

However there's a more obscure meteor shower that also peaks on the 27th - the June Scutids. At 7:30 the radiant was low on the horizon just south of east (Az/Alt +96 degrees/+2 degrees). I think this is consistent with the MO as a June Scutid meteor. Not a very active storm, with an average of about 2 - 4 meteors per hour.

However, we have to remember that it's perfectly normal to see meteors that are not associated with any particular meteor shower.

This is the closest match I can get to where the car was at this this moment:
Moment 1 Arrow.png
https://www.google.com/maps/@34.242...QDFSXYsuaEnhrIXg!2e0!7i16384!8i8192?entry=ttu
Moment 1 A.png


I'm going to center the spot where the MO first became visible, to get an accurate compass reading.
Southeast.png
The Mystery Object first appeared from behind this tree at a point which is a bit west of south. But its path points, generally, back the eastern sky. Probably to the south of east or even SE. It's hard to tell.

This is the closest match I can get to where the car was at this this moment:
Moment 2 Arrow.png
https://www.google.com/maps/@34.243...kyLrZirwc-r-0x5w!2e0!7i16384!8i8192?entry=ttu
Moment 2.png

Notice that in this frame the MO is a dash (line segment) and is brighter than in the first frame. This is consistent with a meteor getting closer to the camera.

Moment 2 Arrow Kropped.png


Note that it is not heading from south to north as the popular narrative would have it. It's heading generally east to west.

The June Scutids radiant would be to our left in this frame.

To refresh everyone's memory about what a meteor storm radiant looks like...
NASA-Tumblr-image-of-Perseid-meteor-shower.jpg
Meteor paths point back to the radiant. Meteors hardly ever appear to come straight out of the radiant, which has caused confusion in the past. In other words, if a meteor was observed significantly to either side, or below or above the radiant, sometimes it has been dismissed as being associated with a particular meteor storm.

I'm saying this as a preemptive strike against this kind of comment: "The MO appeared in the SE. It didn't come from just south of east, which is where the June Scutids radiant was at the time. So it couldn't have been a June Scutids Meteor! LOL"

Should I even address this kind of comment: "The MO was traveling level! But meteors fall straight down! LOL"

Well I guess I just did. Meteors can appear to go any-which-way, including straight up. It's called perspective.

So this is where I stand just now: Through the front windshield, the witness saw a distant airplane to the north shining in the late afternoon sunshine. Because it was unexpectedly bright and because of parallax and perspective effects caused by the motion of the car through a turn, it looked strange, and the witness hit the save button on the cameras. Later the witness checked the cameras and saw a meteor in the left and right rear-view cameras and assumed this was the same object that appears in the front camera. The witness assumed that the MO came from behind and flew over the car and appeared in front of the car. It then stopped and reversed direction and flew back over the car from where it came.

I don't consider my interpretation to be conclusive. I'm open to all comments/corrections.
 

Attachments

  • vlcsnap-2023-07-02-11h49m39s325.png
    vlcsnap-2023-07-02-11h49m39s325.png
    535.7 KB · Views: 62
  • Moment.png
    Moment.png
    1.9 MB · Views: 75
Last edited:
I'm a little leery of the coincidental timing of a daylight meteor at exactly the right instant to get confused with a couple of planes when captured by a couple of car-cameras like this. It is, of course, POSSIBLE, and may in fact be what happened. But it just seems like that sort of meteor is a rare enough phenomenon that birds/a drone/a (third? closer?) plane/something Tesla cameras do should be pretty definitively ruled out before ruling that in!
(I've seen a lot of planes, birds, camera weirdness,and nighttime meteors, but have never seen a daylight meteor, my understanding is that they are not hyper rare, but are not particularly common, either.)
 
Last edited:
This might be a match.

The arrow marks the witness location at 7:39 p.m.
Witness Location Large Arrows.png

Larger map includes possible Airplane Number Two
Witness Location.png

Info on planes
Plane One.png
Plane Two.png
 
But it just seems like that sort of meteor is a rare enough phenomenon that birds/a drone/a (third? closer?) plane/soemthing Tesla cameras do should be pretty definitively ruled out before ruling that in!
I understand what you're saying but.... I did painstakingly rule out those things first. Please read.

(I've seen a lot of planes, burds, camera weirdness,and nighttime meteors, but have never seen a daylight meteor, my understanding is that they are not hyper rare, but are not particularly common, either.)
People in the know go out to see twilight meteors during a suitable meteor shower, because they often cross much of the sky. The June Bootids are a good example. You haven't seen one because you haven't been looking at the sky at twilight in the right direction at the right time.

I've seen lots, because I watch meteor showers.

June 26 at 7:39 p.m. just happened to be the right time to be looking to the SE, because the June Scutids were coming from that general part of the sky at maybe three per hour. The witness didn't go out looking for them, but happened to be in the right place at the right time.

I'm a little leery of the coincidental timing of a daylight meteor at exactly the right instant to get confused with a couple of planes when captured by a couple of car-cameras like this.
But coincidence is what makes for compelling UFO sightings.

You're thinking about it backward. Coincidences are what make good stories. Because they are remarkable things in an otherwise humdrum existence.

At the moment of the Big Bang, what were the odds that you would be born? You're impossibly unlikely. That's really thinking backwards

What makes for an airline accident? Usually a series of unlikely events. But they happen.

Think of it this way. Compelling UFO sightings are super rare. Only a few people have a compelling UFO sighting in their entire life. How many minutes are there in an average life? Times how many people's lifetimes? In all those man-minutes there are going to be coincidences.

How many people drive just that one road? Day in and day out for years. But how many compelling UFO reports have come from drivers on that road... ever? One. I hope I'm making myself clear.

Somewhere in Vegas this year, one guy threw four boxcars in a row. He has a story to tell.
 
Last edited:
What are the odds that this would happen? And it would be recorded?



How many people have stories like these below, even once in their life? But there are a lot of people.

Reporter asks random guy on the street about a game in 1967. Asks him if he remembers it?
The guy played in that game.




Twins separated at birth. Their life history matches to small details.
Both have the same name. They married women with the same name, got divorced and married a second wife... with the same name. Had sons and named them the same name. Have the same profession, etc.
 
Last edited:
I understand what you're saying but.... I did painstakingly rule out those things first. Please read.
I did read -- my not being completely convinced does not equate to me not having read what you wrote -- your case was good, I was I hope encouraging anybody who could see ways to make it more so. I remain slightly less convinced than I would like to be; recognizing of course you are under no obligation to convince me of anything! :)
(and the point you make below goes some way to easing my concerns from the opposite direction...)

People in the know go out to see twilight meteors during a suitable meteor shower, because they often cross much of the sky. The June Bootids are a good example. You haven't seen one because you haven't been looking at the sky at twilight in the right direction at the right time.
While a fan of meteor showers, I freely admit that it has never occurred to me to go LOOKING for daylight (twilight) meteors -- thanks for calling that to my attention, I'll add it to the list of things to try. And of course the more likely a daylight meteor, the better it compares to the likelihood of other things, so there's that.

But coincidence is what makes for compelling UFO sightings.
Fair enough.

You're thinking about it backward. Coincidences are what make good stories. Because they are remarkable things in an otherwise humdrum existence.
Sure, but a less unlikely coincidence is, other factors being equal, more likely to be the right answer. I'd like to see some more pain staked in ruling out other options. Perhaps that's just me.
 
I'm a little leery of the coincidental timing of a daylight meteor at exactly the right instant to get confused with a couple of planes when captured by a couple of car-cameras like this. It is, of course, POSSIBLE, and may in fact be what happened. But it just seems like that sort of meteor is a rare enough phenomenon that birds/a drone/a (third? closer?) plane/something Tesla cameras do should be pretty definitively ruled out before ruling that in!
The issue is that these kinds of reports are self-selecting for coincidences. Humdrum occurrences abound, but don't attract attention; those that succeed on social media are not "randomly chosen", they're the result of a process that favors surprising coincidences.

The problem I see is that the mystery object appears in both rear-facing cameras simultaneously, and if it's far away, we should see parallax of the width of the car. Unless my intuition about the size of the tree is off, these objects are not a car-width shifted: imagine a Tesla stuck in that tree top, facing us, and that object's width would be the parallax shift.for rays that aren't too far from parallel. (It would be half a car-width if the meteor was twice as far as the tree, but it's farther, so it's more width.)
 
The problem I see is that the mystery object appears in both rear-facing cameras simultaneously, and if it's far away, we should see parallax of the width of the car.

I wish we could slow down or shuttle the videos, maybe others can. The rear facing camera shots remined me of a reflection of some sort. The way the MO seemed to move across the screen in relation to turn of the car just said reflection. But I can't figure out how 2 different cameras would have caught the same reflection. Or maybe the sun glinting off some powerlines just right, but there doesn't seem to be any power lines there.

Again, it would be nice if someone could make slowed down videos that could be scrubbed back and forth. In real time the MO just looks like it's tracking with the car's movements.
 
I assumed all three objects were distant aircraft. But I took another look. The MO in the front camera view is not a distant aircraft. What I said here doesn't make sense.
Testing my idea
First Frame in which the object is visible versus last frame.
First Frame.png
Last Frame.png
This test makes it clear that as far as the trees go, perspective is more important than parallax. The trees are getting "bigger" as they come closer, therefore the edges of the trees are moving laterally across our line of sight.

Meanwhile the plane has shifted a bit to the right relative to the mountain. I think that means that the mountain is closer to the car than the plane. I'm still working out whether the shift to the right makes sense.

Edit: No, the shift means the dot is closer to the car than the mountain is.
I'm making a radical revision to my working hypothesis, because I've been retesting it.

Something that's been bothering me all this time. The shift in relation to the distant mountain doesn't make sense as a parallax effect. The MO shifts to the right in relation to the mountain when it should shift to the left. This means this is proper motion.

This is the same object that is visible in both rear-view mirrors. And the MO is exhibiting proper motion throughout. It has the same general appearance in all three cameras - a dash (or short line segment) and is brighter than the sky.

I was wrong about the path the MO seems to take in the in the right rear-view camera because there is too much image distortion. I've been looking at the left rear-view camera. This makes it clear that the MO is generally following the direction of the road. So it is moving generally south to north.

I don't think it is a close, small object.
-Any object at high enough altitude to be in the sunlight would have to be traveling at a very high proper speed to show this high apparent speed. That eliminates insects and birds. It also eliminates a drone shining in the sunlight. Just way beyond the actual speed of any drone.

An aircraft would have to be at a very high altitude. That would make for an impossibly high actual speed.

Meteors can cross this much sky in this much time. They're traveling at miles per second, after all.

It can't be a close drone with a headlight because in this daylight scene, we would see the structure of the drone. Even if motion blurred.

I've found two genuine twilight meteor videos. I had to eliminate many hoaxes, contrails and airplane tracks in time lapse videos.


A short; so I have to post a link.
https://youtube.com/shorts/9h7oAFBtZF8?feature=share

This is where I stand now: The MO is a single twilight meteor traveling generally from just west of south to just east of north. The light I've been calling Airplane Number Two really is a distant aircraft. The meteor in the front camera looks like it stopped at some point because as it travels away from the camera it starts traveling along our line of sight instead of across our line of sight.


From the left rear-view camera. I recommend setting the speed to 0.25. You can also use YT to manually move the video back and forth. It shows the direction of travel more clearly than the right rear-view camera.



The Mystery Object is not an aircraft because it's showing proper motion. Two deciding factors:

-The view from the left rear-view camera. The object goes past the left rear-view mirror. This could not be caused by a perspective effect. This motion might be explained by the nose of the car pitching up, but...
-The view from the right rear-view camera eliminates pitch as a cause. The motions of the Mystery Object and Airplane Number Two don't match. They should match if they are both distant aircraft.

What it is not:
-Insect. None of the trees have sunlight on them. An insect high enough to catch the Sun could not have this high apparent speed. This is not an insect in sunlight.
-Drone. In this light you would see the structure of the drone. Not a streak of light.
-Aircraft. Apparent speed is much too great for the small apparent size.

The most likely explanation to me is that the Mystery Object is a twilight meteor. It wasn't visible in the sky previous to this, although I think it would be at times if it had been there during the previous 30 seconds. It seems to grow brighter as it comes closer. It appears to move from east to west, which is consistent with a sunset meteor. Not a bolide. Just a short lived meteor. It probably lasted about a second.

Coincidentally, there happened to be a distant aircraft to the north which was captured by the front camera. If it were moving east to west, the inferred flight path of the object wouldn't really make sense.
WRONG I got the direction of travel wrong from concentrating on the right rear-view camera video. The left rear-view camera shows the direction of travel more clearly. I now think the MO object in all cameras is the same thing. A meteor; traveling from just west of south to just east of north.

From the right rear-view camera. Too much image distortion.


But, once again...
Note that the MO and distant aircraft do not share the same motion. If both of them were distant aircraft they would react in the same exact way to the motion of the car. But they don't. Notice that the Distant Airplane stays above that hill. All of its apparent movement is caused by the car turning. The MO moves independently of the Distant Aircraft; (aka The Second Drone, aka Airplane Number Two). It both rises in the frame relative to the Distant Aircraft and moves laterally away from the Distant Aircraft.

From the front camera.

As it travels north, and away from the camera, the meteor "drops" toward the horizon in the familiar perspective effect. That's why the meteor enters our view from the top. That's not because the car is pitching up. As it travels away from the camera it appears to slow down or stop, because it starts to travel along our line of sight, rather than across our line of sight.
 
I wish we could slow down or shuttle the videos,
Perhaps you already know, but some video players, including the one Youtube uses on the desktop version of its website, allow for stepping through frames, letting you go as fast or slow as you would like. On youtube, when a video is paused you can press the "comma" or "period" keys to go backwards or forwards by one frame.
 
Last edited:
Meteors can cross this much sky in this much time. They're traveling at miles per second, after all.

It can't be a close drone with a headlight because in this daylight scene, we would see the structure of the drone. Even if motion blurred.
I am still of the opinion that the mystery object is a drone. I feel that although a meteor could be a possibility a drone is statistically more likely, however maybe there are more observations other than the lack of apparent structure that would help rule out a drone? The velocity might be one, but that is essentially why I started this thread, to try and ascertain the speed of the drone.

As it travels away from the camera it appears to slow down or stop, because it starts to travel along our line of sight, rather than across our line of sight.

I feel that if it were a meteor its trajectory would be the opposite of what is seen in the video since due to gravity it would follow a parabolic path as it is pulled down to the earth's surface, unless it bounces off the atmosphere. (I am out of my league here, so please correct me) The approach trajectory seen in "Tesla Vid Right.mp4" when it first appears starting at the 30 second mark has it lower to the horizon and it QUICKLY rises in the frame from the perspective of the observer. However with its exit, although it may descend into the frame quickly, its trajectory of descent flattens out relative to the viewer, implying it would be traveling directly away from the viewer on a path leading it out into space, rather than an increasingly rapid crashed decent to the earth.

Also if the meteor were bouncing off the atmosphere and heading away into space, or even simply speeding away, would we expect there would be more change in its apparent size / luminosity as it zooms away from the observer? The size and brightness appears fairly stable through the entire front camera footage.

When you look at the mystery object's position in the front camera's frame relative to the tree branches on the left it stabilizes quickly at a certain height. I take this to be the drone coming to a rapid halt and then hovering in position and helps to explain why its size and brightness does not change significantly thereafter.

Regarding not being able to see any of the drone's structure, that is odd. Maybe along with the blur, its light(s) are enough to overwhelm the camera sensor and blow-out any detail?
 
I think i have noticed a show-stopping problem.

i was hoping these videos provided a great opportunity to measure an objects speed due to the capture on multiple camera angles and most importantly the syncing of each video to one another.

However the mystery object exits the frame of "Tesla Vid Left.mp4" at the same frame as it enters the frame of the front camera. It is visible in both at the same timestamp. Do we know if these views overlap?

tesla_left_and_front_32s.png

Could distortion from a wide-angle lens account for this? Is the mirror camera able to see directly above the Tesla?

One thing to add to the confusion is that the rear-facing cameras are under the mirrors on the vehicle's body closer to the front wheel well and are actually ahead of the windshield camera. So, maybe the capture of the object by a side camera and the windshield cam at the same time isn't impossible?

tesla_camera_locations.png


If the camera footage is not in sync with one another triangulating the mystery object's position and speed becomes much more difficult as I understand it.
 
Last edited:
I agree, that the phenomena of interest - visible in all three clips - is a single object passing overhead (marked in red), probably in a straight line and it's apparent horizontal motion is due to the car turning, and that the other object is a distant aircraft (green):
(at 6fps, original was 36)


It should be noted, that for a single frame the red object is visible in both the front and the left view, which I think is physically impossible for this camera layout, suggesting that the timeline of the clips is not aligned, making speed calculations across them futile. (There's of course more than just a single frame difference, for example it takes one of the cyclists about half a second to get from the edge of the front camera field of view into the left cameras, and that's horizontally)

Tesla cameras (4 and 5 are the relevant ones), there is probably some wiggle room between the different models but the general layout is the same:
a.jpg

I wouldn't currently rule out a drone or bird as a possibility.

[Edit] I was typing while the above comment got posted...
 
It should be noted, that for a single frame the red object is visible in both the front and the left view, which I think is physically impossible for this camera layout, suggesting that the timeline of the clips is not aligned, making speed calculations across them futile.
Kind of amazing that we just posted this at the same time.

I agree, unless the rear cameras can see directly above.

Also, great video you provided there. Thanks!
 
I agree, that the phenomena of interest - visible in all three clips - is a single object passing overhead (marked in red), probably in a straight line and it's apparent horizontal motion is due to the car turning, and that the other object is a distant aircraft (green):
Thank you; this is easier to visualize than a single view at a time. This composite view makes it quite clear that the event takes place during the course of a single long left turn, with what appears to be an uphill portion that levels out toward the end. In other words, "roll, pitch, and yaw" are all likely to be factors contributing to the apparent motion of the object.
 
Tesla cameras (4 and 5 are the relevant ones), there is probably some wiggle room between the different models but the general layout is the same:

But are we talking about a Model X or a Model 3? The X costs about twice the 3 and might have more cameras? My wife has a 3, so I can go and record some video just to see what is seen in the cameras on a curvy road.
 
But are we talking about a Model X or a Model 3? The X costs about twice the 3 and might have more cameras? My wife has a 3, so I can go and record some video just to see what is seen in the cameras on a curvy road.
Would be great if you could do that.
Seems like any long narrow object or pole that passes over the top the car would work. Like the horizontal pole of a traffic light or overhead highway sign. I wonder if even pulling out from a garage would suffice? Just to see if the same object can be seen in both cameras.

I don't believe the redditor said which model it was, that's probably significant.
 
Last edited:
But are we talking about a Model X or a Model 3?
What I meant is that the location for cameras at 4 and 5 (above rearview mirror - looking forward, just behind the front wheels - looking backward) is the same for all models. There might be some variation in the camera specifications though.
model 3:
m3.jpg
model s:
ms.jpg
model y:
my.jpg

images are from https://www.tesla.com/ownersmanual/ under 'autopilot/about autopilot' for the respective models
 
What I meant is that the location for cameras at 4 and 5 (above rearview mirror - looking forward, just behind the front wheels - looking backward) is the same for all models. There might be some variation in the camera specifications though.
model 3:
m3.jpg
model s:
ms.jpg
model y:
my.jpg

images are from https://www.tesla.com/ownersmanual/ under 'autopilot/about autopilot' for the respective models
But the relative distance between cameras may vary between models? For example in those images the model 3 appears to have cameras 4 and 5 much closer together than the S and Y.

Despite the possibility of camera overlap I am not able to find any position in the redditor's videos where a tree branch passes over the car and is visible in both the forward and either rear camera at the same time. I'll keep looking.
 
I am still of the opinion that the mystery object is a drone. I feel that although a meteor could be a possibility a drone is statistically more likely, however maybe there are more observations other than the lack of apparent structure that would help rule out a drone? The velocity might be one, but that is essentially why I started this thread, to try and ascertain the speed of the drone.
You're going to have to show why the structure of a drone would be invisible in this well lit environment. To tell the truth, I immediately ruled out a drone for that very reason.

People keep mentioning statistical probability. That's why I decided to make my first working hypothesis that all objects were distant aircraft and all perceived motions were due to the movement of the car.

That's because that is a very common scenario with witnesses in moving cars. Much more common than drones flying over cars. After testing it I found that my first working hypothesis doesn't fit the facts. So I discarded it.

Only one object is a distant aircraft... the so called second drone. But the MO does show proper motion; independent of the motion of the moving car. The facts show that.

Probability based on history is great, but there's a second step. The explanation has to fit the facts. A drone doesn't fit the facts, and neither do birds or insects.

Although rare, a meteor does fit the facts.

I feel that if it were a meteor its trajectory would be the opposite of what is seen in the video since due to gravity it would follow a parabolic path as it is pulled down to the earth's surface, unless it bounces off the atmosphere.
First I'll address your specific question.

-Meteors are traveling at miles per second.
-This meteor lasted about 2-3 seconds.
-Gravity always has its effect, but in the case of meteors, velocity is the overwhelming factor. (We're defining "meteor" as the visible light produced by ionized gas. The meteorite is a different subject.)
-Any trajectory would not be perceptible.
-We're looking at this particular meteor in videos which have significant, but inconsistent image distortion. (More about that later.)

This section isn't aimed at you specifically. I'm writing this as if to a generic audience.

Let's move on to a far more important subject. How we perceive meteors.
Meteor paths are notoriously deceptive.

There are three main subjects here.
1. Distance
2. Actual path
3. Perspective

1. Distance
They are point sources of light in the sky. Even in a daylight sky there are few clues to tell us how far away a meteor is. People notoriously underestimate how far away a meteor is. They go search for it on a nearby hill and find out later that it was 50 or a 100 miles away.

2. Actual Path
-It's vital to wash out of one's mind any impression that meteors are "falling stars." They are traveling at very high speeds. The meteorite has an orbital velocity and the Earth has an orbital velocity. Even picturing them as a rifle bullet is inadequate. Bullets are traveling feet per second. Meteorites are traveling miles per second.

The importance here is that the meteorite can take any path in relation to the Earth's surface. From straight in to parallel to the surface. It can even be rising in relation to the witness. How? Because of the curvature of the Earth. A meteor passing over one witness like an airplane passing over, can be "rising" in relation to a distant witness.

Once again, a meteor is not falling to Earth. The speed of the meteor is the overwhelming factor. Gravity is irrelevant when considering what we can see.

This one seems to be have been an Earth grazer.


3. Perspective
I'll show this meteor radiant again.
NASA-Tumblr-image-of-Perseid-meteor-shower.jpg
These meteors are mostly parallel. It's perspective that causes them to look like a sunburst. Same thing really. Sun rays are parallel.

Actual direction plus perspective makes for a complicated situation. The American Meteor Society determines a best guess path for reported fireballs/bolides by using multiple witness descriptions. Witnesses who were scattered across a wide area.

(I am out of my league here, so please correct me) The approach trajectory seen in "Tesla Vid Right.mp4" when it first appears starting at the 30 second mark has it lower to the horizon and it QUICKLY rises in the frame from the perspective of the observer.
"Quickly rises." It's not rising. It's approaching. The "rise" is due to perspective. Just as a distant airplane appears to "rise" as it approaches. A dramatic example: The 2010 Mystery Missile which was actually an ordinary airliner flying level. (With the curvature of the Earth as a minor factor.)

Preview-20100119-154110.png

More ordinary situation.


However with its exit, although it may descend into the frame quickly, its trajectory of descent flattens out relative to the viewer, implying it would be traveling directly away from the viewer on a path leading it out into space, rather than an increasingly rapid crashed decent to the earth.
It's not falling to Earth. The trajectory is not a significant factor over this short time period. It could have been heading out to space. Or it could have been heading toward the Earth at a shallow angle... or whatever. But it was mostly following a path we would consider straight and level. ... Before it vaporized.

That's the thing about twilight meteors that can make them worth looking for. They can be Earth grazers and travel across a big part of the sky. That's because the Earth traveling in its orbit can be heading toward the meteorite. But the terminator is on the "side" of the Earth.
SW-DIAGRAM-FOR-AUGUST-6-8-2021.png
But meteors can be earth grazers at any time of day depending on the geometry.

Anyway... Picture a magnetic steel bullet fired at a magnetic steel globe of the Earth. How much does the magnetic field affect the path of the bullet compared to the speed of the bullet.


Also if the meteor were bouncing off the atmosphere and heading away into space, or even simply speeding away, would we expect there would be more change in its apparent size / luminosity as it zooms away from the observer? The size and brightness appears fairly stable through the entire front camera footage.
A meteorite like this is the size of grain of sand. What we see is the ionized gas it produces by dumping energy into the atmosphere. That area of ionized gas isn't all that big either. It's just really bright. So the apparent size isn't going to change. But... as it approached it did get brighter.

When you look at the mystery object's position in the front camera's frame relative to the tree branches on the left it stabilizes quickly at a certain height.
Perspective again, plus significant image distortion in the video.

I take this to be the drone coming to a rapid halt and then hovering in position and helps to explain why its size and brightness does not change significantly thereafter.
As it passes over it's moving across our line of sight. As it heads away it's traveling along our line of sight. The apparent slowdown is due to that.


Regarding not being able to see any of the drone's structure, that is odd. Maybe along with the blur, its light(s) are enough to overwhelm the camera sensor and blow-out any detail?
Naw. The simple answer is that it's not a drone. It's best to discard a working hypothesis when it's shown that it doesn't fit the facts.
 
Last edited:
I agree, that the phenomena of interest - visible in all three clips - is a single object passing overhead (marked in red), probably in a straight line and it's apparent horizontal motion is due to the car turning, and that the other object is a distant aircraft (green):
(at 6fps, original was 36)


It should be noted, that for a single frame the red object is visible in both the front and the left view, which I think is physically impossible for this camera layout, suggesting that the timeline of the clips is not aligned, making speed calculations across them futile. (There's of course more than just a single frame difference, for example it takes one of the cyclists about half a second to get from the edge of the front camera field of view into the left cameras, and that's horizontally)
Very nice work. The object in green is what I was calling Airplane Number Two for awhile. Now I'm calling it the One And Only Distant Airplane. It first shows up at about 15 seconds into the video.

0:15
15 seconds.png


0:17
17 seconds.png


0:20
20 seconds.png

Its apparent motion across the frame is due to the car turning.
My current position is that there were only two objects involved in this sighting. A distant aricraft to the SE shining in the late afternoon sunshine, and a single meteor that came from the south.

Btw I no longer think it was a June Scutid nor associated with any particular meteor shower.
 
Last edited:
Let's talk about image distortion.

These are wide angle lenses. There's going to be distortion. However there's a gadget onboard that processes the image back into a more normal looking image. But it's approximately normalized. The consequence is that there's a weird and inconsistent distortion in different parts of the image. Which is fine for the way these images are meant to be used. This camera system isn't meant to be used to take artistic videos.

If it were ordinary barrel distortion there would be some consistency to it.

As it is, these images can't be used to measure parallax or flight paths. I got fooled by that myself at one point.
 
I wouldn't currently rule out a drone or bird as a possibility.

Let's look at the evidence.

The object is very bright against the sky. That means it has to be self-luminous or it has to be reflecting sunlight.

This car is on the east side of a mountain with a Sun low on the western horizon. The car is in the shadow of the mountain. None of the trees or are in sunlight. Only a small portion of the hilltop to the east has some sunlight on it. That indicates that any object above the car would have to be hundreds of feet above the car to catch sunlight.


A bird or insect in the sunlight would have a very small apparent size... or if it were an eagle or condor we would see the wings.

The MO has a very high apparent speed. An insect or bird hundreds of feet above would have to have an even faster real speed. Hundreds of mph? Fiddle-dee-dee.

A close drone in this well lit environment would be visible as a drone. We would see its structure even in motion blur. The stucture isn't even visible in silhouette. It would have to be nearby, because once again if it were distant the high apparent speed would translate into an incredible real speed.

Why do I call it a well lit environment? As for seeing detail in nearby objects, this kind of diffuse lighting is better than direct sunlight. Look at the detail we can see on the trees and rocks and such.

If you don't agree you'll have to show me examples of nearby drones in this kind of light that are invisible except for the electric lights on their structure.
 
First of all I appreciate this discussion and your analysis.

"Quickly rises." It's not rising. It's approaching. The "rise" is due to perspective.
The quote that you are correcting me on, I said "QUICKLY rises in the frame from the perspective of the observer." Is that not the same thing? I understand that meteors do not first literally rise up from the earth into space before they burn up in our atmosphere. Just like the sun rises from the horizon and passes over top of us each day.

Basically I was commenting on how its departure visually differs from its arrival. If you watch the last few frames in the front-facing footage the light actually moves vertically through the frame again. Perhaps due to the car's motion and lenses.

Also would it not be expected to see the meteor diminish in size or brightness as it travels away? It does not seem to change in either aspect at all in those last few frames.

A point against the meteor possibility, is that there were no reported sightings in California at that time:

https://fireball.amsmeteors.org/members/imo_view/browse_reports?country=US|United+States&start_date=2023-06-25+00:00:00&end_date=2023-06-25+23:59:59&event=&event_id=&event_year=

I realize that website is not a definitive source, but there are many sightings that do get reported there. As an example, change the dates to only show July 1 and look at the dozens of reports from a sighting in Colorado that occurred later at night than this one did. There are dozens of reports for that one.
I would think that if a meteor would have flown over one of the most populous metropolitan areas at a time when many people were still awake and outside and essentially traversed the entire arc of the sky while it was still light out, should have some mention there.
 
Last edited:
If you don't agree you'll have to show me examples of nearby drones in this kind of light that are invisible except for the electric lights on their structure.
Fair point

Tricky finding videos with similar light conditions.
Here is something showing speed and lights, although i can make out the "darker" body of the drone as they zip past. I am guessing this video probably has a higher bit-rate than the Tesla cams record at.

https://youtube.com/shorts/2oQsaRW8mg8?feature=share

I'll keep looking
 
Last edited:
First of all I appreciate this discussion and your analysis.


The quote that you are correcting me on, I said "QUICKLY rises in the frame from the perspective of the observer." Is that not the same thing? I understand that meteors do not first literally rise up from the earth into space before they burn up in our atmosphere. Just like the sun rises from the horizon and passes over top of us each day.

Also would it not be expected to see the meteor diminish in size or brightness as it travels away? It does not seem to change in either aspect at all in those last few frames.
I think it does change in brightness, especially at the end when it's burning out.

A point against the meteor possibility, is that there were no reported sightings in California at that time:

https://fireball.amsmeteors.org/members/imo_view/browse_reports?country=US|United+States&start_date=2023-06-25+00:00:00&end_date=2023-06-25+23:59:59&event=&event_id=&event_year=

I realize that website is not a definitive source, but there are many sightings that do get reported there. As an example, change the dates to only show July 1 and look at the dozens of reports from a sighting in Colorado that occurred later at night than this one did. There are dozens of reports for that one.
I would think that if a meteor would have flown over one of the most populous metropolitan areas at a time when many people were still awake and outside and essentially traversed the entire arc of the sky while it was still light out, should have some mention there.
Not this meteor. It's too ordinary. The only remarkable thing is that it was slow and crossed a lot of the sky. And it crossed almost directly above the witness.

But it was too dim to attract that kind of attention. It was maybe apparent magnitude -4 to this witness. Like Venus. But remember this is apparent magnitude not absolute. There are two factors to apparent magnitude: absolute magnitude and distance. It was very close to this witness. But it must have been pretty ordinary in absolute magnitude. If visible at all in the Los Angeles area it would have been dim. If people saw it they wouldn't think much of it.

The July 1st meteor you're citing was a daylight fireball. People reported it as high as mag -28. The Sun at Noon is -25. Just witness reports of course, but one thing is clear. It was really bright, and was an intense experience for anyone who saw it. Clearly many thousands of times brighter in absolute magnitude than our meteor.

Google Earth says Longmont is 60 miles from the path of this fireball.


Just an educated guess, but our meteor was probably about the size of a grain of sand. Maybe a pea. This fireball was probably about beach ball size.
 
Last edited:

Here is something showing speed and lights, although i can make out the "darker" body of the drone as they zip past. I am guessing this video probably has a higher bit-rate than the Tesla cams record at.

https://youtube.com/shorts/2oQsaRW8mg8?feature=share

FYI, you can plop the ID of a short in a normal watch link to get at the actual video.


Source: https://youtube.com/watch?v=9h7oAFBtZF8



Source: https://youtube.com/watch?v=2oQsaRW8mg8
 
I guess one should have been suspicious of a UFO being caught on 3 separate cameras strategically placed on one car.


Yeah, I'm not sure what to think. I guess I feel the need to apologize for starting this thread in the first place and wasting everyone's time.
 
Wow what a waste of time this was
Yeah, I'm not sure what to think. I guess I feel the need to apologize for starting this thread in the first place and wasting everyone's time.

I would say not at all. You saw it and brought it here to see if anyone could figure it out. We learned about Tesla cameras and daytime meteors.

And these are not 2 guys in their garage playing with BLENDER or SketchUp, they have quite the setup and devoted a considerable amount of time to it, learning from their previous attempt. Even if you or the rest of us thought it was a hoax, it would have been hard to show it as such. They know what they're doing, and they faked the metadata.

It also calls to our attention that sophisticated hoaxes like this are out there, so we learned something there.

If anything, we should always keep in mind a hoax.

I'm a bit torn. I really enjoyed the video and there is a part of me that says "Ha, take that UFOlogist! There are lots of hoaxes!"

However, for a lot of people into UFOs, it's like a religion for them, and these guys didn't just fake a video, they socially engineered people, some vulnerable people, into accepting it. Yes, maybe very credulous UFOlogist should take this as a wakeup call and maybe the only way to get through to some of them is by fooling them first. But it's borderline making fun of someone for their beliefs. I'm curious if they ever went back on reddit and fessed up?
 
I would say not at all. You saw it and brought it here to see if anyone could figure it out. We learned about Tesla cameras and daytime meteors.

And these are not 2 guys in their garage playing with BLENDER or SketchUp, they have quite the setup and devoted a considerable amount of time to it, learning from their previous attempt. Even if you or the rest of us thought it was a hoax, it would have been hard to show it as such. They know what they're doing, and they faked the metadata.

It also calls to our attention that sophisticated hoaxes like this are out there, so we learned something there.

If anything, we should always keep in mind a hoax.

I'm a bit torn. I really enjoyed the video and there is a part of me that says "Ha, take that UFOlogist! There are lots of hoaxes!"

However, for a lot of people into UFOs, it's like a religion for them, and these guys didn't just fake a video, they socially engineered people, some vulnerable people, into accepting it. Yes, maybe very credulous UFOlogist should take this as a wakeup call and maybe the only way to get through to some of them is by fooling them first. But it's borderline making fun of someone for their beliefs. I'm curious if they ever went back on reddit and fessed up?
At this point, no amount of fleeting UFO footage or "whistleblower" claims will convince me. Especially nothing filmed within the past decade or so. If anything, they have proven that NOTHING is to be trusted at face value, even seemingly rock-solid evidence.

Until we have identifiable tech or bodies (not just raw slag or nebulous microscopic fragments etc) in the hands of places like Caltech, MIT, Harvard etc. or similar accredited/independent labs around the world, I will remain unconvinced. I'm not holding my breath.

Even if the US came out and claimed we had ET tech, but didn't actually put it on public display, then I'd suspect that they were doing it for propaganda purposes or perhaps to intimidate foreign powers with hints of super-tech weapons at our disposal.
 
Yeah, I'm not sure what to think. I guess I feel the need to apologize for starting this thread in the first place and wasting everyone's time.
I don’t think you need to apologize. You saw something that’s seemed real and you had questions. This forum exists to ask questions about things not immediately identifiable and there are many folks here who are quite expert at finding explanations for difficult to identify imagery.

I also believe it is important for all of us to face “fakes” now and again, it adds to our knowledge base. It gives us experience and clues for spotting other fakes in the future.

I think we can all learn something from examining a video like this.
 
Yeah, I'm not sure what to think. I guess I feel the need to apologize for starting this thread in the first place and wasting everyone's time.
I don't see it this way. We now have the rare opportunity to see how a video was doctored and this lets us fine-tune our debunking methodologies for future videos. It's rare that we ever get complete closure on a thread. I might even go back and see if I can find inconsistencies with their process.
 
Until we have identifiable tech or bodies (not just raw slag or nebulous microscopic fragments etc) in the hands of places like Caltech, MIT, Harvard etc. or similar accredited/independent labs around the world, I will remain unconvinced. I'm not holding my breath.
Don't forget provenance. It doesn't matter who holds the evidence if there is no trustworthy chain of provenance that explains how it got there. (See https://www.metabunk.org/threads/meta-materials-from-ufos.12995/ )
 
Back
Top