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mickjoebill
6th Jan 2014, 06:41
Pilot reports near miss with 'rugby ball-shaped UFO' near Heathrow Airport (http://www.theage.com.au/travel/travel-news/pilot-reports-near-miss-with-rugby-ballshaped-ufo-near-heathrow-airport-20140106-30cgs.html)

Hard to believe that an object that is perceived to be a solid shape would not appear on radar, unless it was small or designed not to do so.


Mickjoebill

TWT
6th Jan 2014, 06:55
Probably flew over an All Blacks training session somewhere

737er
6th Jan 2014, 07:15
The aliens are smart and always choose ships which resemble the object of the regions favorite sport. The last one spotted in Arkansas looked just like a cigar. They are clever.

Nervous SLF
6th Jan 2014, 07:22
It can obviously only be one of three things, 1 Swamp gas, 2. Chinese lantern or 3 Mass hypnosis.any other suggestion is
totally wrong. Weather balloon had already been taken off the list of possibles.

Blacksheep
6th Jan 2014, 07:28
Weather balloon had already been taken off the list of possibles. A British weather balloon that is . . .

At 35,000 feet it could have flown transatlantic in the jet stream. Nevertheless, it was airborne and unidentified and thus a true Unidentified Flying Object.

Nervous SLF
6th Jan 2014, 08:12
A British weather balloon that is . . .

At 35,000 feet it could have flown transatlantic in the jet stream. Nevertheless, it was airborne and unidentified and thus a true Unidentified Flying Object.


Sorry Blacksheep but anyone who sees a UFO is mad as a hatter -there are no such things as every single one will
be easily explained.










I am of course being a tad sarcastic as I admit to seeing something in the sky that no-one could say what it was.:) However
the official default position seems to be to try and make out that the sighters are lunatics when plainly most are certainly not.:)



.

onetrack
6th Jan 2014, 09:17
An airline pilot has reported a near miss with a "rugby ball-shaped" UFO that passed within metres of his passenger jet near Heathrow airport.
He told aviation authorities investigating the incident last July that he was certain the object was going to crash into his aircraft and that he ducked as it headed towards him.
They have been unable to establish the identity of the mysterious craft, which apparently approached the airliner at great speed.
He (the pilot) told investigators the object passed "within a few feet" of the top of the jet and that it was "cigar/rugby ball-like" in shape, bright silver, and "metallic" in construction.
Oh, man! What would a dash-cam be worth on an A320, at a moment like that!! :eek:

Noah Zark.
6th Jan 2014, 09:46
Although reference is made to the object's shape, not a hint about its estimated size, although of course size is difficult to judge when the thing is a total unknown quantity, and also air to air.

A A Gruntpuddock
6th Jan 2014, 10:09
Sounds like one of these helium filled fish-shaped balloons I have seen advertised.

Vercingetorix
6th Jan 2014, 10:16
Probably an UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle) but the MOD ain't saying.

:ok:

El Grifo
6th Jan 2014, 10:33
However
the official default position seems to be to try and make out that the sighters are lunatics when plainly most are certainly not

Standard practice around here. Stifles discussion :ok:

El G.

Geezers of Nazareth
6th Jan 2014, 12:05
Sounds very much like a weather balloon, there is also the possibility it wasa privately launched balloon as they seem to be getting increasingly popular

one example.... A Toy Train in Space - YouTube

There are plenty of amateur balloon launches that take place throughout the year in the UK. Not so many during the winter months - maybe one per month - but across the summer there seems to be hardly a weekend that goes by without something being launched. As one of those on the periphery of the flights (I'm a 'tracker' rather than a 'builder and launcher') I have a little bit of experience of these things.

One thing that is very obvious is the care taken to make sure that none of the flights go anywhere near major airports, and many of the flights require NOTAMs. There have been plenty of flights planned where the predicted landing is too close to a major airport, and the whole flight has been called-off at the last minute. That's not to say that we're perfect - one flight from the Midlands was planned to land north of London, but they put too much helium in the balloon and it landed in the suburbs of south London!

There are two types of balloon flight ... a small mylar 'party balloon' (usually silver) which carries a very light-weight GPS and transmitter (these types don't need a NOTAM); or the larger weather-balloon version which is able to carry a little more weight (eg, a camera or some kind of science experiment) and these ones do require a NOTAM.

The small mylar ones generally bob along between 5,000m and 15,000m, and can fly for several days.
The larger latex weather-balloons will go much higher, regularly in the mid 30,000m area (ie, over 100,000 ft!) and the current record is a little under 44,000m. They generally fly for a few hours, although with careful filling they can fly a little lower, but fly for several days.

Having said all that, I don't believe that what was seen was an amateur flight (but I'd want to see the date and time of the sighting to check back with flight records).


The other major weather-balloon launchers is the Met Office ... either civilian or military. There are daily launches from Larkhill on Sailsbury Plain (at 06z and 10z) and with the wind being predominantly from the west or south-west then these often drift towards London. Another launch site is Camborne in Cornwall, and with strong winds (such as today) it is likely that their midday sonde will land near London.
In September last year a weather sonde landed just north of Heathrow ... by a matter of less than 100m! It floated down across Heathrow at less than 500m and landed in the bushes next to Avis in the north-eastern corner! I've also tracked one to landing in Holland Park in central London.


BTW, you may think that Baumgartners 'Red Bull Stratos' descent was impressive, but it was beaten last year by a teddy bear! search on YT for 'Ted Bull'.

G-CPTN
6th Jan 2014, 12:31
From the interweb:-
It was a High Altitude Balloon launched by radio amateurs having some fun on a Saturday afternoon.
Paper aircraft flight on 13 July 2013 as part of testing for the Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) mission. Launched in Brightwalton, Berkshire, and came down near Salisbury Plain, having reached 34,440m (113,000ft).
Improved edit of footage from main payload camera up to around 18,300m (60,000ft) and finally the Raspberry Pi camera mounted in the aircraft's nose as the flight ended dramatically up a tree. How our shaken Reg Playmonaut survived a 113,000ft stratodangle ? The Register (http://www.theregister.co.uk/2013/07/19/chav_aircraft/)

LOHAN ? Full coverage ? The Register (http://www.theregister.co.uk/Wrap/lohan/)

rotornut
6th Jan 2014, 13:02
I saw one along with my English lawyer friend in southern Ontario. Obviously we are both insane!

Shaggy Sheep Driver
6th Jan 2014, 13:30
Reminds me of the incident years ago when a Trident collided with something in (I think) the Bovingdon hold. There was evidence of scraped paint on the aircraft on landing, but it was never discovered what it had hit though a wx balloon trailing its measuring gear was suspected.

It brought forth all sorts of unlikely near miss reports from Trident crews. My favorite was a close encounter with a grand piano, also in the Bov hold; it had, allegedly, "3 legs locked down and 20 degrees of lid set". :)