Wednesday, April 3, 2019

A Forensic Analysis - the SCU report on the events of November 2004 is now available

A Forensic Analysis

The Scientific Coalition for Ufology has just released a report titled "A Forensic Analysis of Navy Carrier Strike Group Eleven's Encounter with an Anomalous Aerial Vehicle." The authors are Robert Powell, Peter Reali, Tim Thompson, Morgan Beall, Doug Kimzey, Larry Cates, and Richard Hoffman.

The abstract of the report reads:

"On November 14th of 2004, the U.S. Navy's Carrier Strike Group Eleven (CSG 11), including the USS Nimitz nuclear aircraft carrier and the USS Princeton missile cruiser, were conducting a training exercise off the coast of southern California when the Navy's radar systems detected as many as 20 anomalous aerial vehicles (AAV). These AAV's were deemed a safety hazard to an upcoming air exercise and the Captain of the USS Princeton ordered an interception with two F/A-18F Navy jets. This paper examines the publicly available subset of those data: Eyewitness information from the pilots and radar operators; Freedom of Information Act releases of four Navy documents; and a Defense Intelligence Agency released video taken by an F/A-18 jet using an AN/ASQ-228 Advanced Targeting Forward Looking Infrared (ATFLIR). Analytical calculations based on radar notes, testimony from pilots, and the ATFLIR video are used to derive the velocity, acceleration and estimated power demonstrated by the AAV maneuvers. Calculated AAV accelerations ranged from 40 g-forces to hundreds of g-forces and estimated power based on a weight of one ton ranged from one to nine gigawatts. None of the navy witnesses reported ever previously seen military or civilian vehicles with these maneuvering abilities. Manned aircraft such as the F-22 and F-35 are limited to nine g-forces and the F-35 has maintained structural integrity up to 13.5 g-forces. Our results suggest that given the available information the AAV's capabilities are beyond any known technology. The public release of all navy records associated with this incident to enable a full, scientific and open investigation is strongly recommended."

Introduction - the data

The 270 page report, opens by providing a context for this paper. Military reports of unusual objects, and particularly military radar data, have been made for many years, e.g. July 1957 RB-47 incident; the November 1964 USS Gyatt event; and the October 1968 Minot AFB occurrence.

The military witnesses in the report, from the November 2004 CSG-11 incident, includes four interviewed primary witnesses; twenty secondary witnesses and four anonymous witnesses whose testimony supports that of other named individuals. The report notes the limitations on human memory when taking testimony from 2004.

The Freedom of Information Act was used to submit 26 requests to the U.S. Navy, U.S.Marines, NORAD and the Defense Intelligence Agency. Requests were made for "radar data, written logs, communications logs, videos and intelligence reports." 

A 76-second ATFLIR video, the subject of which matched the visual observations of two pilots, is available for analysis. It is understood that this released video is of lower quality and of shorter duration that the original; and the original is not available to the authors, although seen by many military witnesses.

In addition, much more military data was captured at the time, which also is not available to the authors. Military witnesses have advised that "representatives of a U.S. government agency took control of the data that was on the USS Princeton."

Chronological Occurrence of Events

The report then sets out a chronology of the events, which commenced on 10 November 2004, and culminated with an air intercept on 14 November 2004. This chronology is crucial to understanding the sequence of events.

Basically, Princeton's radar; radar of the Nimitz; and radar on an airborne early warning aircraft, picked up AAVs, thus suggesting little possibility of a mundane cause. The AAVs descended from 80,000+ feet to various altitudes in short periods of time. Authorisation was given, by Captain Smith of the Princeton, for an air intercept. 

Ahead of that intercept, Marine Lt Col Douglas Kurth, in the air at the time "saw a disturbance on the calm and glassy ocean surface."

The details of the air intercept have been published in numerous places since December 2017, so I will not repeat them here. Suffice to say, this forensic report provides a very detailed account of the events derived from first hand military witness testimony from two of the air crew involved in the intercept, and witnesses on board the Princeton. Following the engagement, which lasted some 5-7 minutes, the two jets returned to the Nimitz, the radar targets from near the ocean surface, rose to an altitude of 80,000+ feet in "less than one second" and tracked south at 100 knots. 

A follow up aircraft took a ATFLIR video of what, the air intercept crew stated, was the same "Tic-Tac" shaped object which they observed. The report's authors state that "In addition to the witnesses in the CIC, the authors have identified 18 of the crew that saw the IR video."

Missing data

The report notes that "During this time, as reported by three witnesses interviewed by our team, the communication logs, the radar data, and other associated electronic information was removed from the USS Princeton and a copy of the video from the USS Nimitz." The absence of this data meant that the SCU team were unable to provide as detailed a forensic examination of the characteristics of the AAVs, as they would have liked.


Despite the absence of some crucial data, there was sufficient information for the SCU to undertake an analysis of the performance characteristics of the AAVs. "Speed, acceleration, and power characteristics can be calculated based on statements from two navy personnel who observed the radar tracks of the "Tic-Tacs" in real time."  The report states that these "yield a maximum velocity of 104,895 mph at the midway point and an acceleration of 12,250 g-forces." Needless to say, these figures exceed anything our current technology is capable of producing.

Visual observations of pilots, were also used to determine AAV performance characteristics, which again indicated high velocities and g-forces, beyond our current technology.

Information contained within the ATFLIR video was also used to gain a third estimate of AAV performance, which again suggests extraordinary performance.

The authors conclude "We have no reasonable explanation for the accelerations demonstrated by the object." There was also no sonic boom, or intense fireball that might result from something travelling at these speeds, in the atmosphere. 


The majority of the report's pages consist of appendices. These include "FOIA Requests and Replies;" "Video Provenance;" "Acceleration, Speed, and Power Calculations;" and "Witness and Associated Information." Some are very technical, and will require attention to detail by the reader.

My observations

Despite the limitations clearly stated by the authors, this is an excellent report and analysis of the publicly available data in an outstanding example of an AAV.

This style of report; factual, evidence based, citing sources, peer reviewed, and complete with factors which need to be taken into account, e.g. the capacity for human memory to be less than perfect over time, sets a standard we should all aim for in terms of publication.

Here is data, which can be cross checked, discussed, debated and tested. Naturally, the SCU will expect us to do so. Names of military witnesses are given, with their consent, and I, like other researchers, have been in touch with some of them to fact check for myself. In this way, transparency of detail is to be found.

There is more to be done, as the authors note "More information likely exists but it will likely require a forceful inquiry such as from a congressional subcommittee investigation in order to pry loose radar data, communication logs, Navy Intelligence reports, and other information on this case."

Indeed, the former manager of the Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program, Mr Luis Elizondo, at the March 2019 SCU conference at Huntsville, in reply to a question: "Since AATIP was selected to collect information on any threats, why wouldn't they have the radar data from the 2004 event?" Elizondo's response was "I didn't know we didn't," which in my opinion, appears to confirm that radar data from the 2004 event is held. 

As readers of my blog will be well aware, I thrive on original documentation. It is therefore good to be able to read the full text of SCU's FOIA requests; and that the SCU was able, for example, to obtain "an un-redacted copy of the Executive Summary and have verified to our satisfaction that the report is a legitimate document that is based on the actual interviews of the pilots and sailors involved." The Nimitz deck log was also obtained, which I also, had previously been able to examine. Interestingly, the Navy stated that they could not locate the corresponding deck log for the Princeton. 

I understand from the SCU, that copies of the report have already been provided to select members of the US Congress, with the hope that it might stimulate some members to call for a subcommittee hearing on AAVs. Blog readers will be aware that there have been other AAVs sighted by U S military personnel, since 2004, particularly off the East coast of the US in 2015. So, it is not just the 2004 event which would benefit from such hearings.

In summary, this report is essential reading, and deserves widespread and prolonged discussion. The SCU team are to be congratulated for all their hard work.

A small after note

The To The Stars Academy of Arts and Science, which has access to all of the data which the SCU team had, plus more, given the involvement of Dr Hal Puthoff; Dr Eric Davis; and Luis Elizondo in the AASWAP/AATIP, should have long ago produced a report of the depth and quality which the SCU has just done. Although I have the greatest respect for the TTSA team, they have so far failed to produce good, scientific data and analysis. Instead, we are promised a commercial television series, which will reveal their results.

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