Pegasus Research Consortium
The UFO Files
Shuttle UFO Captures
Mission STS 114
A "Wolf" Among The "Sheep"?
OR
A VERY Surprised INCO! 
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The Image above is taken from STS 114
GIF 2005 Jeff Challender

IMPORTANT NOTE:

This photo and the following information and links to the original information were compiled by Jeff Challender and was reprinted from Greatdreams.com

This is not our discovery or work so please view the rest of the Data on STS 114 there.

A "Wolf" Among The "Sheep"?

OR

A VERY Surprised INCO!
..

STS-114 050806

In my e-mail inbox on the morning (PDT) of Saturday 6 August 2005, were two letters which proved important. One from a fellow in Europe, who identified himself only as "Flint", and another from my friend Oren Swearingen of Texas. These letters both referred to what the two men had seen on their television screens simultaneously at 13:54 GMT, 6 August 2005. They had been watching NASA Select TV, witnessed, and were Co-Discoverers of, something that shook them both. It inspired them to request that I review my VHS tape for the time in question. Both were anxious to know what I might find.

Undocking of Discovery from the Space Station had occured some six and a half hours earlier, and the two spacecraft were separated by many miles by this time.

What had gotten the attention of the observers was an eerie scene from the black & white low light camera in the payload bay of Space Shuttle Discovery. She was, at the time, traveling across the Pacific Ocean between Hawaii and California in a northwesterly direction. The camera was pointing to the southwest, and to the east the Sun had just risen for the Orbiter. The view resembled a night scene over inhabited countryside, with many lights, small and large, which looked very much like cities and towns as seen during a night pass. Most of these were seen against the dark face of the ocean, and APPEARED to be stationary with many of them flashing.

This field of objects was anything BUT stationary, however. At real-time playback speed on the VCR, they certainly appeared that way. When looked at on the computer at vastly increased speed, the field of objects revealed itself to be a cloud of Shuttle debris, with everything in motion. How such a large cloud of highly reflective debris originated is a bit of a mystery. Shuttle was flying "sideways" at the time. The OMS (Orbital Maneuvering System) engines had been used earlier to increase the distance between Discovery and ISSy. Yet, it seems unlikely that such a thick cloud so nearby, would STILL be extant after more than six hours.The RCS (ReactionControl System) jets are often cited as culprits in causing unusual looking behavior in ice flakes and debris, and as a source of ice chips on orbit...but this much?

Now, ignoring the cloud of debris for the time being, we are mainly concerned here with an object which simply put, DOES NOT BELONG! The entire "live" downlink segment lasts 3 minutes 19 seconds from onset to the INCO cutting it off quite suddenly to a pure black screen. (The segment is 3 minutes 41 seconds from "map to map") At the 2 minute 10 second point, a "Wolf" enters the flock of "Sheep". THIS is the object which might possibly be an U.F.O. Seen at normal playback speed on the VCR, this one appears to cross the field of view from right to left, come to a complete stop, and reverse itself, moving back to the right again.

"Flint" asked if it might be a comet, and in "the same breath" pointed out that comets do not stop and back up. This is true. In fact, comets are very slow moving in their naked eye course across the sky. They take days, weeks, even months to traverse the heavens.

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UFO - NASA STS-114 Below Earth 

Meteors are ONLY visible when they enter the atmosphere at their horrific speeds of 40,000 to 120,000 mph (64,000 to 192,000 kph), and proceed to burn up from the heat of friction. Other astronomical bodies appear more or less stationary in the sky for Earth based observers, with apparent motion due to the rotation of Earth. On orbit, this motion is merely exaggerated by the velocity of the spacecraft, but relatively the same.

So, this object displayed anomalous motion. It's not natural, and it doesn't look to be ice or debris. Dr. Swearingen also emphasized that this object crossed his screen, stopped and reversed.

Once the video segment was isolated, and captured into my computer, it could, with my video editing program (Ulead Video Studio 9), be speeded up or slowed down as desired. This is where the "stationary" lights were revealed to be an ice or debris cloud in the vicinity of Discovery. And the fact that it WAS a cloud of debris is most likely WHY the INCO allowed the downlink to run on. He ALLOWED the public to see this display because he KNEW what it was. Perhaps he even thought he was playing a cruel "UFO Hoax" on the uninformed. When the anomalous object became obvious, he unceremoniously cut the feed to a black screen.

But, DID this strange object stop, and reverse itself? The anomaly, when vastly speeded up in its trajectory, can be seen to not stop, but swing to the right in a long gentle turn.

So, all that said, let's now take a few moments to scrutinize the pictures and animations (using Ulead GIF Animator 5) from the event, so that we may better understand what happened, and what did not.
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GIF 2005 Jeff Challender

We begin by establishing where Discovery was at the beginning, and end of this event. As can be seen, she was sailing along above the western Pacific Ocean heading for a pass over California. The yellow circle denotes my home in the Sacramento area.

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2005 Jeff Challender

This single still frame has a yellow arrow added to show the direction in which the camera was pointing during the incident.

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GIF 2005 Jeff Challender

In this wee animation, the crude yellow line shows where the limb of Earth is. Until almost the end of the sequence, this perspective did not change, meaning the camera was not moved. Near the end, and cut to black screen, the camera was suddenly panned down and to the left.

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GIF 2005 Jeff Challender

This animated GIF comptesses 2 minutes, 25 seconds to less than three seconds time. It covers the period before the anomaly entered from the right. NOW we can see that the "lights" are not stationary, but drifting in space, as ice chips and debris are wont to do.

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GIF 2005 Jeff Challender

This 41 frame animated GIF is centered on the final 55 seconds of the sequence containing the anomaly. In the original VHS tape, played at normal speed, this object seemed to come to a stop, and reverse itself. But here we can see that it flew though the field of view, and made a long curving swing to the right. As the Sun rose higher toward the end, the clouds over the ocean far below were illuminated. In the final frames, the arcs of milky light which moved as the camera moved, were caused by the Sun lighting up the optics in the camera.

What is it? That cannot be determined at this time.

Is it another bit of ice or space junk being turned from it's path by an RCS jet firing? Unknown for certain at this time. We don't know distance from the camera for this object, because in space there is no frame of reference for estimating such things. Therefore, it's impossible to tell the size of the anomaly. We CANsee that it appears to get smaller as it progresses. It does seem reasonable, to speculate that it's a bit far off to be diverted so smoothly by a control jet. In addition we do not see the corresponding flash of light associated with these firings at night. These flashes are often seen even in daylight as well. Another salient point is that IF there were a jet firing, WHY is it that NONE of the other objects are affected?

What remains is that we have an unexplained object whose motion does not fit convention. Our friends Dr. Oren Swearingen of Texas, and "Flint" of Europe, deserve full credit for having their eyes open, and brains engaged when this sequence of events transpired. Thank you very much gentlemen!

Enhancements


2005 Jeff Challender
The image to the left is a 500% enlargement of the anomalous object. It was then cut from the original 720x480 frame.

2005 Jeff Challender
This is the same enlargements as seen above, but with the colors reversed to make the object easier to see.

2005 Jeff Challender
The same 500% blow-up embossed

At all times during this incident, the camera was under the control of the INCO in Houston Mission Control.

(INCO - INstrument & Communication Officer - The man in Houston Mission Control Center who is responsible for operating the Shuttle payload bay, and robotic arm, cameras. He also remotely operates the helmet cameras in space suits. In the case of ISS, this officer is referred to as the CATO - Communications And Tracking Officer. In both cases, these persons CONTROL everything which is PERMITTED to go out on broadcast to the public. It is a commonly believed fallacy that the cameras are operated by Astronauts & Cosmonauts on the Shuttles, and Space Station. Very little camera work is done by the crews. They're way too busy for that.)

At the end of the day, it's up to YOU to draw your own conclusions.

2005 Jeff Challender


LINK TO JEFF CHALLENDER MAIN PAGE

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