Wednesday, December 1, 2021

Australian Air Traffic Controllers and pilots report UAP in 1976

Australian government UAP files 

The Disclosure Australia Project conducted between 2003-2008 located dozens of Australian government UAP related files, mostly in the National Archives of Australia. Paul Dean of Melbourne and I have continued to locate additional files and pay for them to be digitized for anyone to view. Two of the files we found, namely file series BP990/1, control symbol 5/113/AIR PART 1 and 5/113/AIR PART TWO have recently been digitized by someone other than Paul or I. I found that there were some interesting "Unusual Aerial Sightings" reports, from Air Traffic Controllers and pilots. Here are the details.



19 July and 23 September 1976

On 8 November 1976 the RAAF Amberley wrote a memo to Department of Defence (Air Force Office) (Attn: DAFI ILO) about two reports of UAS on 19 July 1976 and 23 September 1976. The memo attached a 26 October 1976 memo to RAAF Amberley, from the Australian Army, about the two reports. Both reports were made by experienced Air Traffic Controllers from the control tower of the Army Aviation Centre, Oakey.

19 July 1976. 1730hrs local. Duration 4 minutes.

WO2 L.C. Kearns, age 40, an ATC reported that on a fine, mainly clear day, to the south-west at approximately 40 degrees elevation, he saw at around 7000 feet AMSL, an object which passed over the control tower. It was last observed at 20 degrees elevation to the north-east. It was a very bright light of constant intensity, on a flat trajectory from west to north-east which passed directly over the Oakey control tower. Sargent T. W. Matthews also saw it. There was no interference with radio or navigation. The object had no "trail" attached to it. Ground temperature was 15 degree C; 51% humidity; 1/8 Ac cloud cover. Surface wind was from 090 deg. 9 kts. visibility 65km. At 5,000 feet wind was 12 kts. from 160 degrees. At 10,000 feet 4kts from 180 degrees.

23 September 1976. 0958hrs local. Duration 20 seconds.

WO2 L.C. Kearns was again an ATC at Oakey. In a fine, clear sky, apart from  Cu bands to the north-east at 15-20NM, he saw a large, oval shaped object, metallic silver in color, moving at very high speed, with no contrail or "tail." It was on a flat trajectory. It was first seen at 20 degrees elevation in the East-south-east at an estimated distance of 3-5NM at 5,500 feet AMSL. Last seen at 20 degrees elevation north-east. WO2 K. J. Bradley also saw the object for part of the time. Amberley had no aircraft in the area. Brisbane control radar detected nothing. There was no interferences to radio or navigation.

4 November 1976. Evening

A 16 November 1976 memo from RAAF Amberley to the Department of Defence (Air Force Office) (Attn: DAFI ILO) reported as follows:

"1. The following reports were passed to the Orderly Officer at Amberley by the Senior Area Approach Controller (SAAC) Brisbane airport on the night of 4NOV76.

Report 1: The duty controller at Coolangatta Tower whilst watching an aircraft on approach noted what appeared to be another set of navigation lights. After confirming that no other aircraft was in the area, he viewed the object through binoculars. It appeared to be a light changing from red to green and back, stationary on the 200 degree E CLG and estimated range in excess of 30NM. The object was about 30-40 degrees elevation. Time of sighting was 1900hrs. The controller dismissed the object as "unknown possibly a star" and took no further action.

Report 2: The Captain of an Ansett Electra enroute BE-SY reported to BN control that he had an object maintaining station on the aircraft and slightly to the south-west. The Electra was about 60NM south of Brisbane at this time: 2135hrs. The object appeared to be a light changing between green-red-green. After a while it appeared to move up and down in its position and then departed to the south at approximately 1 1/2 times the speed of the Electra. Brisbane radar had no contact in the area apart from the Electra.

Report 3: The pilot of a light aircraft (a PA-34) enroute Dalby to Orange sighted a red and green object maintaining station on him. The object was in view for about four minutes and then faded from view. Time of sighting: 2140hrs.

Report 4: Both Brisbane radar and the Meteorology radar at Eagle Farm reported unidentified returns, stationary, to the east of Brisbane. Initial contact was at 2150hrs. The met radar showed two returns in close proximity; one 070deg/56NM at 15,000 feet; the other 080/54NM at 12,500 feet.

BE radar showed only one return in the same general position. The contact painted about the same size as an aircraft on the met radar, but smaller than an aircraft on the ATC radar.

According to the radar operator at 2200hrs the contact at 080/54 tracked south to 090/53 and faded. The other contact tracked north to 064/58 and descended to 10,000 feet. By 2250 it was at 058/61 moving on a track of 020 at 12 kts. The met radar operator likened the movement to that of a ship, but said they had never painted ships before in his many years of experience at BN.

2. The above info is all that is available. The red-green object visually sighted has been assessed as most possibly the planet Venus, the colors etc being caused by atmospheric conditions. Weather on the night of the sighting was clear with no cloud. The radar contacts could have been caused by ducting of the radar energy painting ships at sea. DOT has confirmed that they had no civil traffic in any of the relevant areas. There was no military activity.

3. Because of the number of related sightings and the not altogether satisfactory example of the radar contacts, these reports are forwarded for your information."

End notes

1. According to the planetarium program "Stellarium" the planet Venus, at 1900hrs on 4 November 1976, as seen from Brisbane was at 252 degrees azimuth, (18 degrees south of west); and at an elevation of 21 degrees. It set at 2057hrs. The Moon at 1900 hrs was at 25 degrees east of north, at an elevation of 51 degrees. 

2. Thank you to the anonymous individual who had the two files digitized at their expense.

3. We have had no other sightings reported by Department of Army ATC, even if they are from 1976.

4. How many more Australian government files relating to UAP are still not listed on RecordSearch?

5. It is a shame, that in Australia, we have no national level reporting process for military personnel. We simply have no ides of the numbers (if any) of current sightings being made by military personnel in this country. 

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