1. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    The unexplained shut down has spawned a variety of conspiracy theories.
    • Informative Informative x 2
  2. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    No information on their web site, just "unforeseen circumstances"
  3. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

  4. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    Sunspot is described as a town, having a Post Office, but it's an odd place. Just a loop of road on top of a mountain ridge with a great view.
    Metabunk 2018-09-13 13-47-08.
    There some houses, a campground, and a post office. But apparently they have evacuated the whole thing. There's only one road in and out, and the local tv showed that closed. So they must have evacuated everyone living there.

    Metabunk 2018-09-13 13-52-34.

    I'd imagine it will be explained shortly, as there's loads of media attention. But it's interesting for now.
  5. Hevach

    Hevach Senior Member


    Apache Point Observatory is also in Sunspot, and apparently was not shut down at the same time, and staff there reports helicopter and road vehicle activity but no more answers than the solar observatory staff were given.

    That does limit a few of the theories I've seen, like a crashed test craft of some sort from White Sands, some kind of weapons test, or an alien cover up. Seems that it would also eliminate a spill from the solar telescope's mercury float bearing (ten tons of mercury, even if not all of it was released it would have to be secured, and I've heard of larger areas being shut down for smaller mercury spills), but not a possible terrorist or theft threat against it.
  6. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    Guy goes for a walk around the observatory.

    Source: https://youtu.be/_AVdVBvSjcU?t=1m32s

    Basically there's nobody there, nobody guarding anything. Some doors are open. Curious folk going up and looking around.

    Very odd that it's a "security issue" but there's nobody there.

    At 14:30 a woman says there's "nothing in [the houses]." I wonder it these were old houses for observatory/lab workers. How many people actually lived there?

    This KOAT report says "Five families" have been evacuated. But there's about 40 houses there.
    Metabunk 2018-09-14 11-22-03.

    He's been evacuated, but there's nothing to stop him just walking (or even driving) back up there. Just a bit of tape.
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2018
  7. Z.W. Wolf

    Z.W. Wolf Senior Member

    This implies that it's a group of people who are of interest to the FBI, not the entire staff and not the site as it exists now. But a solar telescope has no secret technology, neither can it gather any secret information. Perhaps the site was being used for something other than astronomy - Project X. And it was something that used easily portable equipment that has been moved away. There's also evidence that it was something that involves "antennas."

    So I'm guessing a target group (associated with Project X) is under investigation, while the rest (the astronomy folk) are slowly being questioned and cleared. My guess is this is about a single person within the Project X group: a foreign spy or a domestic asset of a foreign country.
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2018
  8. deirdre

    deirdre Moderator Staff Member

    the Washing Post article makes it sound like the staff voluntarily evacuated. The helicopter is not odd. and White Sands says it isn't connected to them.

    Sounds like they got a "I'm gonna kill you all" threat from someone (ie ticked off ex spouse? ex employee) and they are waiting for the FBI to investigate the letter or phone call.

    they call the fbi to report a threat. the fbi comes looks at the letter and suggests "you might want to leave for awhile until we can check this out".
  9. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    Reading the WaPo article makes it all just seem like bureaucratic slowness. There's a recent change in who runs the establishment, and maybe there's just nobody taking the initiative to clean up the mess.

    I'd bet it's just a "credible threat" (anonymous bomb threat, or suchlike), and nobody knew what to do, and it escalated unnecessarily.

    They do have guards there now, so at least someone is doing something.
  10. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    And the FBI did not shut it down, AURA did.

    It's not even clear if the FBI were even really involved to any degree. It's all very second hand:
    Much ado about nothing, methinks.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  11. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    Regarding the associated claim that six other solar observatories were shut down, that's entirely baseless, and seems to have come from someone finding six random web cams that were not working. In my experience It's 50/50 for any linked web-cam to still be working when I look at it. They tend to stop being maintained after a while.

    It's being debunked even by UFO conspiracy theories like Linda Moulton Howe
    • Informative Informative x 1
  12. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    • Informative Informative x 5
  13. Graham2001

    Graham2001 Active Member

    Sadly conspiracy types like Coast2Coast AM's 'science' advisor are taking that announcement in the way they usually do with 'official statements' something to hype up into conspiracy .


    I don't for the moment believe the authorities are trying to cover up anything, but conspiracy theoriests are expert in twisting statements to fit their preconceptions.
  14. BobsYourUncle

    BobsYourUncle New Member

    I agree there has been a lot of twisting of the facts, it has been difficult to stay on top of it all. I have long thought this has to do with the sun, I just don't believe it is a security issue in this day and age of encrypted signals and other such methods of sneakery. That is just my un-substantiated opinion, I had no facts until now. I will preface the explanation of the chart below with further speculation. If this truly was a critical security situation, why was it just left wide open with no guards posted for a few days? If they took everything of value, why leave it closed, and then why add the guards only after people showed up with cameras?

    Why was the maintenance guy allowed to stay behind, yet couldn't even enter his own home, he had to camp in a tent outside. Why was the director allowed in? Hes not part of any federal authority dealing with these types of things. That is just a few of the things that don't make sense. I will also add that even though 6 observatories were indeed not shut down, there was 6 hours of footage removed from some scopes.

    Lastly, and the reason I made an account to post this post, I have been watching the solar wind data the past few days, and today the solar wind phase-I data was scrubbed for 7 hours, after that happened I checked the phase-II chart. I am seeing a huge anomaly on the 15th, biggest anomaly in what seems to be 21 years. I will attach screenshots of the 21 year chart as well as localized timeframe. I have been trying to get some input from any solar scientists.. but that is difficult as you imagine. Here are the charts.



    I've attached the chart with the missing data.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Sep 17, 2018
    • Funny Funny x 1
  15. Z.W. Wolf

    Z.W. Wolf Senior Member

    There are dozens of ground-based professional solar telescopes across the world plus innumerable amateurs. Not to mention the Solar Dynamics Observatory.

    The Dunn Solar Telescope has no unique abilities. Shutting it down would have no effect on what the world at large would know about some extraordinary thing happening to the Sun.
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2018
  16. Jim_Strong

    Jim_Strong New Member


  17. sharpnfuzzy

    sharpnfuzzy Member

    First hand account from someone who visited the site on Sept 15th with photos and video. Doesn't seem like anything out of the ordinary. My money is on a meth lab.


  18. Z.W. Wolf

    Z.W. Wolf Senior Member

    Interesting idea, but meth labs smell.
  19. NoParty

    NoParty Senior Member

    For a professional, that guy sure makes one snooze of a video.
    After the intro I thought there might be some cool drone views in there, or something. Nope. Lotta nothing.
  20. Trailblazer

    Trailblazer Moderator Staff Member

    More details have emerged. Fairly mundane, although the reason will probably raise yet more flags for the conspiracy world...


    Edit to add: I meant mundane compared to the various theories of crashed spaceships, terrorists stealing mercury, energy weapons, hiding Nibiru, etc. Not trying to diminish the crime.
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2018
  21. Z.W. Wolf

    Z.W. Wolf Senior Member

    Well, I was close. But who would have guessed the nature of Project-X?