|Occurred : 2/16/2002 09:30 (Entered as : 02/16/02 09 :30)
Reported: 4/11/2002 8:52:50 PM 20:52
Location: Statesville, NC
|Black sphere east of statesville airport traveling fast due north.
I was at the statesville airport with my young daughter. It was a clear day with a few clouds in the sky. I was parked north of the runway on Aviation Drive. I was listening to my radio shack 200 channel scanner model#20-312, which Icarry in my personal vehicle to listen to air traffic communications. The frequency for the Statesville airport is 123.05.
I observed a Beachcraft KingAir 200 airplane takeoff on runway 28and head in a westerly direction. I viewed the take off through my binoculars a pair of bushnells model#13-7016. I had used the zoom lens to zoom in on the airplanes takeoffs (7-15/35 zoom). Using my scanner, I listened to student pilots getting clearances fo their takeoffs and landings. ACessna 172 skyhawk was holding on runway 28 to let a Robinson R22 Beta helicopter land. Shortly after landing, the helicopter took off again and headed south and turned east past the airport. It then turned north and then west for final approach to runway 28. It then hovered while the Cessna followed the same pattern. At the same time, another Cessna 182 skyhawk recieved clearance and tookoff.I was still watching the helicopter and the first cessna in my binoculars, when the second Cessna took off. I followed it up about 20-25feet off the runway. At this point, I saw a black sphere about the size of a BB bullet off in the distance behind the airplane. The object hovered for about a second and then accelerated quickly from the southeast to the north. It was just a little norteast of my position when it disappeared behind the trees. The object was 15-20 degrees above the horizon and from the first time I saw it to it disappeared was 10-15 seconds.
Even with using the binoculars, I was unable to find a rudder, a contrail or after burner exhaust. I feel certain that it was not a B-2 Spirit, which I had seen at a Concord airport airshow back in May 2000. The B-2 started out looking like a black line in the sky until it got closer to you. The craft I observed had no lights or reflection from the sun which was at 45-50 degrees in the south/southeast sky.
((NUFORC Note: Witness provided a follow-up map of the area and events. The flight path of anomalous object, as indicated by the witness, appears to violate the approach pattern to the airport where the alleged event occurred. PD))