|Occurred : 9/18/2007 23:25 (Entered as : 09/18/07 23:25)
Reported: 11/27/2007 1:24:05 AM 01:24
Location: Bakersfield, CA
Duration:approx 1 minute
|Triangle craft, 3 corner lights one center. Flew straight course but made partial spines on its axis left and right.
Our Power was out do to late payment that night ( 9-18-07, 11:25 PST ). I was alone in the back patio, reclining in a chair listening to my headphones and enjoying the cool night air, there was not much else to do.
First I will tell you that I am very familiar with the night sky and can tell the difference between planets, stars satellites and different aircraft. I have been through Private pilot and Civil Air Patrol ground schools and have had over 60 or so flight hours in private pilot training, and familiar with what lights aircraft should and are required to be equipped with and what each lights function and meaning are etc.
On the night of my sighting the sky was clear and I was sitting back looking up at the stars while enjoying my radio station. I was facing up and out to the east. I noticed some movement in the corner of my left eye, I faced that way and saw what looked like and moved like 4 bright white satellites moving in perfect formation across the sky at a speed a little faster than satellites move across the sky. The formation was that of a perfect triangle with the fourth light dead center. All the lights (3 points and 1 center) were identical in size, color ( white with slightest hint of blue) and brightness. And all about 50% brighter than the brightest stars out that night.
As I have no way of knowing the actual size of the craft as there was nothing to reference it off of, I cant make an estimate on the altitude or speed. But I got the since it was pretty high and cruzing at a good speed, If I put my hand up to the sky the object would be equivalent in length as the width of 1 1/2 fingers.
The object had only these lights and they stayed solid. No red/green wing tip position lights, anti collision or any other for that matter.
The object moved in a straight line to the south east crossing my view of the sky at an angle. I was very confused as to what it could be, I took out my headphones ( volume was not high so I had no ringing in ears from radio station) and listened for sounds of engines which I should have been able to hear if it was a passenger jet, Prop plane or rotocraft at their perspective heights based on the size of the object as it appeared, but heard nothing, this is also a very quiet neighborhood especially at night.
I still figured for a moment that just maybe, it could be a newly deployed satellite. I have seen on the NASA channel where a satellite would be deployed by being released in a case where the case comes apart and the parts drift apart leaving the satellite.
But I was convinced it was not some kind of conventional aircraft or space junk moving in formation when after about 15 to 20 seconds the craft rotated approximate 90 degrees to the right on its axis ( the center light ) it took about 3-4 seconds to make this smooth rotation. At that point it stopped rotating and was still flying in the exact same line of travel and speed but now sideways. (it was pointy side forward to begin with) Facing almost south west but traveling on to the south east.
It continued on for about 10 seconds in this configuration then just like it did before it now rotated on its axis left back to its original configuration now facing its line of travel.
I was really excited to see this because I knew for sure it was not any satellite(S) or aircraft I have ever seen. I was thinking this is either some out of this world craft (cool) or something brand new that we had (also cool), and if it is something we have It has to be using some new kind of propulsion to be able to rotate and fly sideways so smoothly like that.
It continued on to the south east until it was out of site. Both of the crafts rotations were the same speed (about 3-4 seconds) and smooth, never seeming to have an effect on its straight line of travel or speed.
The best I can compare it to would be a tank moving down the highway and the turret being able to swivel left and right without effecting the speed or course of the vehicle. Only what I saw was what appeared to be an entire aircraft do the same.
In my aircraft (flight schools aircraft I use for training) I can do what is called a crab which is where you give full left or right rudder and opposite aileron to put the aircraft in a slightly sideways configuration, but only about 10-20 degrees or so and at the expense of speed, it creates major drag and is used sometimes to drastically slow the aircraft, usually for a landing where you may be coming in a little high and or fast, it allows you to loose some altitude and speed quickly by using the body of the aircraft it self to create a lot of drag.
I know of no aircraft that can put itself in a sideways configuration from forward movement at high speed without breaking apart, moving off course, loosing speed etc. Some aircraft can hover and fly sideways at very slow speeds and some rotocraft but not at high speeds in the hundreds of miles per hour or faster.
Because of the amount of space the craft took up which was not a lot, like I said about 1 and a half finger width and limited number of stars out at night in our sky around here (near by city lights drown out all but the brighter stars) I did not get a chance to see it cross over a stationary star to see if it would block it out, I did watch for that but it did not cross any stars in its line of flight from my point of view. This may have helped rule out separate objects doing formation ( very impressive Formation ) flying but I really got the since it was a single solid object.
Also the lights on the craft all maintained their brightness during the entire sighting across the sky. Satellites I see will usually blink or fade, these lights did not.
I do not know for sure what I saw that night but It was diffidently making deliberate movements making me believe it was controlled by something or someone.
Also for reference the crafts line of travel was south east with the line taking it over or just slightly north of BFL Meadows Field, rather than right over the city of Bakersfield. If anything it would have skirted the area of Bakersfield on its northern edge.
I have included a picture I made on a paint program showing the crafts appearance, line of travel and movements. What I actually seen looked a bit more distant than it appears in the picture. Consider it a somewhat zoomed in look at exactly what I had seen. Also the positions in the sky where the craft changed its configuration was much more distant from each other than what you see in the picture, it was about 10 seconds between the left and right rotations and the craft was seen for a total of about 50 seconds to 1 minute which covered the entire line of sight of sky I could see which was quite a bit.
I have 20/16 vision, seen object on clear cool night with eyes outside, not through any mediums like screen, window, glasses etc.