Friday, May 29, 2009

1915 La Porte, Texas, UFO Sighting

I was visiting the Coast to Coast AM website on May 29, 2009, and noticed the photo of the day entry submitted to C2CAM by a Brian S.  This is just a amazing picture for me to see.

The photograph shows a street scene in the daytime of La Porte, Texas - Main Street to be exact.  Wooden buildings and dirt roads and a few autos and trucks seen in the distance.  Above a chimney to a two story building in the left side of the photograph is the strange object.

I wished that the photograph that was submitted to the C2CAM site was better in the resolution area.  I downloaded the image to see if I could see any details in Photoshop and I wasn't able to do it.  Other people might be able to do it, but I wasn't able too with this example.  

I think Brian S. is wishful in regards to seeing a extraterrestrial sticking it's head up out of the circular looking vehicle/object.  That may or may not be a spoiler sticking up above the main body of the hull.  I'll go along with him that something that looks like smoke from an exhaust is below the object.  

But, this is a amazing picture nevertheless - because of the era it represents.  This picture is pre-1947 offical start date for UFO sightings.  I think that you could classified this UFO photograph in the twenty-thirty year time period known as the great "Airship" sightings at the close of the 19th century.  This photograph EXTENDS that time period well into the 20th century now as far as I am concerned.  
Ref. Coast to Coast Am, Photo of the Day. May 29, 2009. Submitted by Brian S. (

Thursday, May 28, 2009

China's Yinghuo-1 Set to Go to Mars

News from Beijing is that China will be launching a probe to the red planet on top of a Russian booster later this year.

Yinghuo-1 (or "Firefly Light-1" that weighs in at 253 pounds) recently passed a preformance test that clears it to be transported to Russia for final fit out.  Yinghuo-1 is to fly to Mars and enter into Mars orbit in 2010 for a two year stay.  

No additonal word as of yet about China's plans to send astronauts to the moon.  Last year, China's third manned spaceflight had their first spacewalk.

Ref. article by Kirby Chien & Bill Tarrant, May 28, 2009. ( 

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Hubble Repaired! Charles Bolden - The NEW NASA Administrator

      I found this little bit of news embedded in an article on  While focusing on NASA's wave off again for a landing in Florida - the decision to stay up an additional day due to bad weather, the Obama White House announced the following news.

President Barack Obama would nominate Charles Bolden, 62-year-old retired Marine Major General, and four-time space shuttle astronaut; to serve as the new NASA Administrator.

Now, speaking on the shuttle Atlantis.  Hubble Space Telescope repair mission was a success.  The shuttle still has enough supplies to remain in orbit until Monday.  If Kennedy Space Center doesn't clear up in the meantime, NASA is staffing its Edwards Air Force Base recovery team in case the shuttle must land in California in the Mojave Desert.

Repairs to Hubble included outfitting it with a new panchromatic wide-field camera.  This will hopefully let Hubble image objects formed about 500 million years after the birth of the universe according to current thinking.  It also has a new light-splitting spectrograph to check out the chemical composition of gas and dust between the galaxies.  

UPDATE:  from Reuters, I found a photgraph of Charles Bolden on May 24, 2009.

Ref. "NASA cancels Saturday shuttle landing, to try Sunday" by Irene Klotz.  May 23, 2009. (

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Blue Thunder vs. Airwolf Video!

Anybody remember the two main helicopters of movies and tv series from the 1980s?  I'm talking about "Blue Thunder" and of course, "Airwolf."  

Was tooling around the net tonight and found this great YouTube video of a fictional battle between these two helicopters.  Its great to watch!  Copy and paste the link shown below.

Personally, I loved Airwolf more than Blue Thunder (movie and the one season wonder of a tv series of the same name).

Ref. Youtube (

Monday, May 18, 2009

Another Britsh UFO Report - Bristol England

Found this linked off of the website.  Mr. Andy Hadlington saw the mysterious blob silently hovering and took some video from his office window. The actual Telegraph article is dated as May 14, 2009.

He first spotted the what looks like a blob in a rough triangle shape(at least thats my impression after viewing the video) hovering over the residential area known as Knowle in Bristol at 5:30pm on Sunday.  Mr. Hadlington reproted that he did not hear any sound coming from the object. 

Andy Hadlington is 36 years old and a computer game writer. Quoting from that news report, "It was the freakiest thing I ahve ever seen in my life.  I was sitting in my office and saw it out of the corner of my eye.  We're not far from the airport so I thought it could have been a low-flying plane, so I was quite alarmed."

He also added, "It was quite exciting- it sort of hovered past the houses.  There was no sound.  I ran downstairs and out of the garden to see where it went but I couldn't see anything."

The Telegraph article asked a Denis Plunkett, of the British Flying Saucer Bureau, which is based in Winterbourne, also near Bristol; was unable to comment on the video but told the reporters that there are ways to verify its authenticity. 

For additional details, check out that original article link listed below.
Ref., "UFO Spotted Over Bristol." ( 

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Shuttle Atlantis Visits Hubble Telescope

Up in its 350-mile orbit awaits the Hubble Space Telescope and Space Shuttle Atlantis will try to grab onto it over the Indian Ocean sometime today.

Of course, current news reports are concern over the space junk that hit the shuttle on lift-off.  So far, experts do not consider it to be serious. The nicks are shallow and are on the thick thermal tiles in a location that is not particulary vulnerable during reentry.

Starting on Thursday, the first of five space walks will take place to give Hubble its first tune-up in seven years.  The astronauts will have to replace the batteries, gyroscopes, cameras, and a old pointing mechanism.  Plus add new thermal covers on the telescope and add the new science data-control unit.

Ref May 13, 2009 by Marcia Dunn (

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Oprah Says "It's great to have a private jet."

Check out the link below for the Wall Street Journal article about what Oprah said about having success overall, but about having a private jet in general.  

She was speaking at Duke University graduating class.  Quoting the article, "It's great to have a nice home.  It's great to have nice homes!  It's great to have a nice home that just escaped the fire in Santa Barbara, It's great to have a private jet. Anyone that tells you that having your own private jet isn't great is lying to you."  Oprah also went on to explain that "you haven't completed the circle of success until you help someone else move to a higher ground and get to a better place."  

What attracted me to this article was in fact what attracted the writer of this article - her comments about owing private jets.  And the line that the reporter put into their report is very good.  I quote: "In these times of hair-shirt capitalism and envy politics, the wealthy have been going to great lengths to pretend they don't enjoy luxury or want nice stuff. If Oprah were like most of the faux-populist rich today, she would have said something like, "I don't need private jets, in fact I'm happier flying commercial and living in a small house.  I like the simple life."  Of course, she would be lying.  

Oprah has a $42 million custom-built Global Express XRS built by Bombardier Aerospace.

Due to the 'fake'(my words) outcries over the Auto execs flying to Washington, D.C. instead of hitchhiking, the General Aviation world has taken a hit.  Wall Street Journal states that the private-jet industry has been making a comeback by mounting a public-relations campaign to get people flying again.

The other Wall Street Journal link below is the propgranda by famous people who claim that they are ditching their jets to fly commercial.  

I say Bulls**t!  It takes money and wealth to keep the wheels of capitalism turning.  

Hey - I wish I was like Oprah in this one reguard... I would like to have my own business/private jet too!

Ref. Wall Street Journal article"Oprah:  It's Great to Have a Private Jet", May 11, 2009 (
WSJ ( 
Bombardier photo that was attach to original article. 

Friday, May 8, 2009

See Review of New Star Trek Movie Here

Check out my review of the new Star Trek movie on my other blog.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Virgin's Space Tourism is Just the Beginning

Will Whitehorn has plans for the future with Virgin Galactic over the next 20 years.  Plans that include such things as space science, computer server farms and replacing long-haul flights. 

Virigin Galactic has collected $40 million in deposts from future space tourists including such notible people as physicist Stephen Hawking.  VG is planning to begin its commercial space trips within the next two years.  Mr. Whitehorn told reporters that they have bookings from over 300 people that are willing to pay $200,000 for each space flight.  

Right now, Virgin is still running test flights and is hoping to win a license form the Federal Aviation Administration.  "We needed to know we had a sound business plan," Will Whitehorn told FIPP World Magazine Congress, where he was invited to attend. 

Whitehorn also went into how "green" their business plan is by launching their spacecraft from a jet carrier aircraft over more conventional gorund-launch rocket technology.  Plus the non-metallic materials from which the SpaceShipTwo and its carrier aircraft are made from are lighter, and require less power than NASA's space shuttle.  

Virgin is not the only non-government party trying to get in on the space travel industry.  Such companies as SpaceX lead by Elon Musk, are developing their own space-launch vehicles.  some of which might one day be man-rated.  

But other plans for Virgin Galactic is also planning to add to their business plans for orbital computer server farms.  Long-haul transportation flights (i.e. London to Sydney in two and a half hours). Transporting crews up to the space station and launching satellites. 

Ref. Reuters, London. by Georgina Prodhan posted May 7, 2009. ( 

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

U.S. Navy "6th Generation" Combat Fighter by Boeing?

It must be the new Spring fashion lineup that the defense industry is rolling out for previews this month.  We are taking a look at the 6th Generation Fighter.

At the Navy League's Sea-Air-Space show at Washington D.C.'s National Harbor on May 5th, there was a interesting rpesentation by Boeing on their proposal for the U.S. Navy's replacement aircraft for the F/A-18 E/F.  A twin engine escapee from the movie "Stealth."  

Nevertheless, its very kickass looking the sweptwing wing, tailess aircraft.  The Northrop-Grumman N-UCAS is also of a similar tailess design.  

This aircraft is described as "6th Generation" combat fighter design.  Article on Aviation website by Graham Warwick (05/05/2009) link listed below. Boeing artworkincluded with original article.
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Bell Helicopter's Hybrid Tandem Rotor Idea

Here is a video link to something that was posted on the blog The DEW Line.  Follow this link to check it out (

Something new from Bell.  This is their candidate for replacing both the AH-64 and UH-60 helicopters in an all new configuration that Bell calls Hybrid Tandem Rotor.  Bell's executive VP for government programs, Robert Kenney; stated to the public recently.

Quoting from the DEW Line posting by Steven Trimble(May 4, 2009), "The HTR 'splits the difference between a helicopter and a tiltrotor," said Kenney at the resent Army Aviation Association of America's (Quad-A) convention held in Nashville, Tennessee

The Bell-Boeing V-22 can tilt its tandem rotor 95 degrees, while the HTR's wing tilts by 25 degrees and gains 5 degrees more by adjusting the cyclic controls.  The HTR could achieve a forward speed of 225 knots.  The V-22 cruises at mroe than the 300 knots.  Currently the fastest helicopters are limited to about 170 knots.

This particular configuration has never been attempted before - or so Bell engineers think.  Kenney himself went after the engineers and designers with all sorts of questions and they answered him right back.  At the end of the presentation, Robert Kenney was asking himself why anybody hadn't seen this before. Why it hadn't been tried before. "Now that you see it it's kind of a no-brainer."

Right now, this is just a concept.  There are no plans to make a actual prototype demostrator.  Unless the US Army launches a new competition to replace the AH-64 and UH-60s.  The program, known as the Joint Multi-Role (JMR) requirement does exists, but as of yet, not been funded to enter a long-term development phase. For the foreseeable future, the US Army will stick with what it has right now.  

Bell, however, was hoping to "spark some interest" in the US Army at the recent Quad-A convention.  As VP Robert Kenney said, "This is a kind of it's coming out party, so we'll see what the interest levels are." 

UPDATE(May 8, 2009): received permission to post the concept artwork for the HTR from Bell.

Ref. (