1. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lxYAze89TG4

    Video shows a stationary light with irregular flashing. After 19 seconds the light accelerates and flies off to the right.

    Another version of this video says:
    Some people interpret this as a larger craft in the clouds, which would mean rather high speed.

    However, I think the simpler explanation, as suggested by others, including people in the video, is that it's a small drone. The initial movement is disguised by the flashing light, but if it's stabilized and contrast-enhanced then you can see it's a fairly normal rapid but smooth start, typical of a drone.


    By default, drone lights are not super bright white, but there's plenty of cheap lights that can be added, such as the Lume Cube:

    Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DsifqJlx-b0
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2019
  2. Jerry25

    Jerry25 New Member

    Doesn't Southwest direction coincide with MacDill AFB?
    Sure it can be a "Drone", but not one with known technology.
    If it passing in and out of clouds, then 7K elevation is possible.
    If lower altitude then lack of sound debunks any conventional drones, but even at 7K feet conventional, drones should be heard.

    At 8:10 PM Sun could have been reflecting light if it was a metal surface, but wouldn't be so constant.

    A local TV station should want to show as a human relations type piece. They could check with MacDill, not that anyone should expect them to tell the truth. However, how they respond would be telling.
    Would MacDill suppress video being shown by a local network? I am being to believe that the "Men in Black" are not being used as in past decades.


    Is there a link to Rich Winslow's more detailed remarks?
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 1, 2019
  3. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    It's not though. I've studied the video at high contrast, and there's noting to indicate it goes in and out of clouds, just the light flashing on and off. At one point it appears to go "behind" a patch of blue sky.

    What? You can barely hear them at 400 feet when there's sufficient ambient noise.

    I think it's pretty clearly a flashing light.
  4. Hey guys,

    I was sent this video for review and of course the #1 hypothesis is a quadcopter (i.e: drone).

    I live 500 m (+- 1,500 ft via google earth) from a heliport and I can hear all choppers (Ecureuil, R-22, R-44, EC-135, EC-145, etc...) when they land even if the wind blows in the opposite direction. They become "silent" for me usually +-10" after taking off and moving in the opposite direction, so maybe at about 600 or 700 m from me (slant range)

    Choppers are much louder than the fastest drones so like I was telling my friend, if this thingy is located a few hundred meters from the witnesses, forget about the sound. Surface winds were calm that evening, about 2 m/s (METAR from Tampa Int'l Airport) and the cloud ceiling (1st layer) was at about 750 m (2,460 ft).

    I do think that the thingy was flying in&out of the clouds and that it was not visible at times (with the blue background) because of the motion of the camera/phone. It's hard to estimate angular heights but it seems to me that it started at about 50° and ended at 40° APPROXIMATELY. Why do I think it was flying in&out of the clouds? Simply because towards the end of the video, it becomes slightly visible for a few frames and the camera is not moving much but it still disappears. I don't see a correlation with camera motion when it disappears at the end but I see a correlation with camera motion when the thingy has blue skies in the background and disappears. ps: I first thought this was linked to focus and the tree on the top part of the FOV but I did not notice a clear correlation.

    Now, one thing I noticed is what I call a "trail artifact" and it's visible when it accelerates, this means that the angular motion is greater than the framerate (29.97). It's visible because you can see two light sources in one frame and this happens twice in a row. This is visually speaking, a pretty awesome acceleration on the (+-) horizontal axis even if it's hard to quantify.

    So at the end of the day what do we have? Not much imo, if Mick is right, the thingy is much closer and lower than we think (below 750 m alt) and its ground speed would also be slower. What's left? A rather great acceleration but we cannot quantify it.

    I did send the video to a few drone pilots (pro), I'll post their feedback if I have any.
  5. I just got an answer from my friend Titi (French drone instructor and videographer), he is busy shooting a music video with his drone so he did not spend much time on the video.

    I'll translate for you what he said, he thinks that it is a DJI Mavic 2 Enterprise with its fixed protection guard.

    I don't know how he came up with this, since there's no way to ID a specific model and there's no way to see a protection guard for the propellers.

    Anyways, I am gonna post the video in a FB group (drones) with a large audience and see if I get any feedback.

    Btw, Happy 20th birthday to THPS Mick, used to play big time back then lol

  6. Jerry25

    Jerry25 New Member

    Richard Winslow posted a detailed follow up and maintains it was in and out of clouds and described many details that were lost from taking IPhone video. Lots of strange irregular changing colors that he says could not be LED generated.
    He said it was stationary for some time (had a purpose), and when it suddenly moved West at rapid pace (I estimate >700 mph if 3 traveled 3 miles in 14 secs of video), it also had a purpose, but wasn't a straight line.
    As a former skeptic, these descriptions are very typical of many in the Mufon files, dating back long before sophisticated drones were available.

    My guess is they were checking out MacDill AFB (another military connection) and the rapid flashing had some significance.

    Since Richard hasn't replied, doesn't have FB or Twitter access and is skeptical any media outlet would post, he seems to have lost interest, but maintains it was an Alien based sighting. This will likely be yet another sighting that nothing becomes of it.

    Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lxYAze89TG4
  7. jarlrmai

    jarlrmai Member

    It seems a trope, take a fairly mundane video, claim that it did all sorts of other stuff that just happened not to show up on the video or didn't get recorded for some reason. Then kind of lose interest in your sighting which if it is what you claim it to be is the most important event in human history.
    • Like Like x 1
  8. Hi Mick,

    I think it is a regular flashing sequence, slightly over 2 Hz (> 0.5 s(p)). If you watch the video frame per frame, each flash last for 2 frames and there's 10 and/or 11 frames between each flash. I wonder if the fact that there's 10 and/or 11 frames between each flash can be linked to the NTSC standard since the frame rate is not 30 fps but 29.97 fps?

    We can always speculate about a simpler explanation and we should but I don't see a smooth start/acceleration at all. Why? Simply because before it picks up speed on the horizontal axis, it stops flashing for 10 frames (as usual) and then the light is on and the thingy is motionless during 3 frames and only then it starts accelerating. When it starts accelerating, there's a trail effect visible twice in a row. This effect was not generated by the phone's motion since trees are visible and they give us a good idea of camera shake but by the acceleration itself and the rather low frame rate compared to high speed cameras. Capture d’écran 2019-09-02 à 02.48.47.

    Based on this observation (trail effect), it seems plausible that we see part (1/2?) or most of the acceleration in 1 frame (input duration = +-0.033"). I did not say all the acceleration because a second trail is visible and this could or should be evidence that the thingy is still accelerating if my reasoning is correct.

    Is such a sudden acceleration compatible with the flight domain/specs of a quadcopter? I have no idea since we cannot quantify the acceleration for a start (same with the ground speed and AGL alt). Nissan built a drone (dubbed GT-R) and it reached 100 km/h (62.13 mph) in 1.3".

    I contacted this FPV pilot on YT to get his feedback, you should watch the video:

    Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GlELt3KM_OU

    Last edited: Sep 6, 2019
  9. Gerard

    Gerard Member

    You could assume the size is that of a drone and calculate the acceleration from that.

    For example you could determine the velocity in units of (target length)/s directly from the video then differentiate to get the acceleration in (target length)/s^2. Once you have that you can just plug in the assumed drone size to get the acceleration in normal units and see if the numbers make sense.

    Of course this assumes that the camera is stationary.

  10. Hi Gerard,

    I have no idea how reliable this method would be since I would not use a physical object as a reference but a light.

    The error margin might be great because of that.

    • Agree Agree x 1
  11. One way to maybe find evidence that it is a quadcopter is by focusing on the flashing pattern.

    A friend of mine told me that his friend owns a drone that starts flashing/strobbing when motionless and stops when it starts moving. This could give important informations to the pilot, specially when not using FPV. I know that most drones come with default settings and the color of the leds and the flashing patterns always/usually mean something important to the user. (low batt, low signal, position, etc...)

    These settings may be modified and drones can be customized of course but we may find a good candidate with the flashing pattern...

  12. Jerry25

    Jerry25 New Member

    Richard Winslow had added a significant detail the next day, replying to Steve Kaltz:
    "One detail I left out was about 25 to 45 minutes after the event, helicopters of different manufacturer were combing the area for about 15 minutes. So someone saw it on radar. We also live 10 miles from a small airport, 8 miles from a small strip, and 12 miles from Tampa International Airport. We also have McDill AFB, and the US Coast guard that flies the big four prop planes and helicopters around our area. I’ve lived here 26 years"

    So why would multiple choppers be combing the area 25-45 minutes later? Assuming they were at the same location (or else he wouldn't have posted), an expert to the area like Richard should have been able to confirm the distances based on the known chopper size and noise levels.

    So with this new information in mind, Richard's statement of seeing it traverse several miles, on an UPWARD trajectory, and then disappearing to the West, should be taken seriously. From the original video, it moves from 19 secs and at 29-30 secs goes behind darker clouds then seems to disappear. With the rough assumption of 3 miles between 33 and 19 secs (14 sec interval), would be 770 mph. With no sound and going behind clouds at 20 and 29-30 secs, a bare minimum of 1000 feet and rising, is logical.

    I was going to say that it could have been a new military test drone, but I don't see why they would want to alarm the residents, much loss send choppers out to investigate.

    And if was the faster type of military UAV (having jet propulsion), it would have had wings, which would have been visible at dusk. Instead there was only a single large bright light changing in color from deep ruby red to deep green and also change in shape, per Winslow. He claims to be expert on LED's, and states this was larger and not an LED.

    I have to conclude it is still an Unexplained Flying Object. The best way to rule out an Alien base UFO is to try replicate the observation before,during and after dusk.

    Of course, additional reasons for my being suspicious, is the frequency of similar events near military bases, as well as the frequency of UFO observations in the Tampa Bay area.

    Most notably what was just documented on Episode #1 of the new Discovery/Science Channel series called "Contact" on August 22, 2011. There was a strange noise (like deep metal or stone grinding sound) heard by thousands inside the stadium, as well as 5 miles away. Using the new CIA data base made available to "Contact" ex-CIA staffers, there were dozens of UFO sightings that day. They subsequently traced the sightings to Waynesboro, VA, during that subsequent 24 hour period. The next day on August 23, 2011, there was a unique very deep 5.8 Earthquake, 50 miles to the East. The Earthquake was felt from Maine to Southern Florida, and damaged the Washington Monument. I felt it in Central PA, but didn't know what it was till the next day.

    I remain very open to debunking as many sightings as possible. But people need to be open to other extra-worldly events also.
  13. Jerry25

    Jerry25 New Member


    Do you have any photo from the ground, showing what the drone looks like - Perhaps even flashing LEDs. That is try to replicate.
    From the Dusk (8:10 PM on Aug 26 in Tampa Bay) only large bright changing light was visible. No drone wings, etc.
    As I elaborated elsewhere, it likely was going much faster than 200 mph.
    Wish however, that Richard Winslow would follow up on his original postings, and would set up a Twitter and FB account, as I suggest. He is older and set in his ways apparently.

    I did a drone search and found a drone reported by a NJ TV station at night, that was first reported as a UFO. However, between the LEDs positions and the movement, it was clearly a drone being using by the police, searching for someone. Huge difference from above case.
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 8, 2019
  14. Z.W. Wolf

    Z.W. Wolf Senior Member

    Two assumptions, not facts. One assumption depends on the first being true. That's called "building dream castles."

    I'll grant that helicopters were there. But why?

    Why not assume this?: It was an amateur drone and attracted no attention from anyone in the military. Then later on there were helicopters flying around a military base for a reason you know nothing about.
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2019
  15. Z.W. Wolf

    Z.W. Wolf Senior Member

    This makes no sense to me.

    Isn't the brake light on a car too big to be an LED? It's an array of LEDs, of course. And so are traffic lights and any number of other examples.

    These RC plane and drone strobes are also arrays of individual LEDs.

    If you Google - led light system RC aircraft - you'll see videos of hobbyists explaining and demonstrating elaborate light arrays. Each array can be pretty big.

    This is one example

    This is a hobbyist testing a number of strobes...

    Another suspect in this case is a drone, or an RC plane, that was flying toward the camera, and then turned. There was no acceleration. Just a change in direction.
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2019
  16. Jerry25

    Jerry25 New Member

    The Lume Cube is impressive, and I plan to post demonstration to some of the UFOlogy types, to warn them.

    In the video in question, object was also flashing between ruby red and deep green, with change in shape, per Richard Winslow. The object moves at 19 sec and almost immediately there is some reduction in intensity and more obvious at 20-21 secs due by cloud. Also at 28-30 secs it also moves though the lower lying clouds. However, Mick's display only shows for less than 4 secs (to less than 23 secs). Object appears to have reached constant speed in about 1 sec (rapid acceleration). Richard maintained that object was on rising trajectory as it moved away. This observation is consistent with the denser cloud cover at 28-30 secs followed by the object seeming to go out of sight at 32 secs (evidence of greater distance).
    Normally the light should be directed in direction of flight, but in this case appears to be aimed 90 degrees away, towards viewers on ground (teasing?). If there was another light in direction of travel it should illuminate the cloud cover at 28-30 secs. I used a 23" high resolution full screen display on my PC, and I experimented with the pause for some time, to make these observations. Richard has the original, which he claims does not do justice to what the 3 people observed.

    Some of the other questioning of the debunking was discussed below, such as the supporting evidence that event was
    a distance away (helicopter discussion) and therefore was traveling at hundreds of mpg, which it turn makes use by an amateur unlikely.

    Finally, there are so many similar sightings on record (traveling around volcanoes for example), that I give over a 50% chance that this sighting is either an Alien UFO, or a sophisticated imitation.

    In any case it was illegal, but I doubt choppers would have investigated if it was low flying and at low speed.
  17. Jerry25

    Jerry25 New Member

    The 3 observers concluded it wasn't an amateur drone, wasn't at low altitude, and was some distance away.
    Richard's estimate was that it he observed it for at least 3 miles.

    The logical assumption we can make is that Richard would not have posted the chopper investigation, if it wasn't in the same distant location. I've added some additional observations above (just submitted) of it going through the lower cloud cover on a couple of occasions.

    Should Richard respond again to his original YouTube post, I will follow up.
  18. Z.W. Wolf

    Z.W. Wolf Senior Member

    The sincerity of the UFO witness(es) is in itself evidence that they weren't mistaken?

    Do yourself a favor and buy this book. You can get it from Amazon for a few bucks:


  19. Hi Jerry,

    I don't understand your question, which drone? If you are talking about the drone I mentioned earlier, I did contact the owner and he told me that the flashing pattern does not correspond to what his friend told me about it, which was "similar" to what is visible in the video but plain wrong = strobing while hovering and non-flashing light when moving.

    His drone is a DJI Mavic.

    That being said, I agree with Z.W Wolf, the fact that helicopters were seen in the area does not prove anything since correlation does not automatically imply causation.

    Nevertheless, if there's a correlation, it could be because these choppers were actually searching for what they think is a drone or rc model possibly generating an hazardous situation.

    Here in France nowadays, there are strict rules about RC models and drones, I am pretty sure the same is true anywhere in the U.S.

    Last but not least, I would be very careful with any speed/alt/slant range estimates knowing that we don't have much hard data to work with. Trust me, if I could, I would have already worked on that since it's always a good training and I trust people here to review my work.