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Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 2011 > Aug > Aug 10

Re: Report From Lumberton NJ Witness 07-30-11

From: Michael Tarbell <mtarbell.nul>
Date: Tue, 09 Aug 2011 11:14:20 -0600
Archived: Wed, 10 Aug 2011 05:55:44 -0400
Subject: Re: Report From Lumberton NJ Witness 07-30-11

>From: Martin Shough <parcellular.nul>
>To: <post.nul>
>Date: Mon, 8 Aug 2011 14:54:08 +0100
>Subject: Re: Report From Lumberton NJ Witness 07-30-11

>>From: Gerald O'Connell <goc.nul>
>>To: post.nul
>>Date: Mon, 8 Aug 2011 00:20:08 +0100
>>Subject: Re: Report From Lumberton NJ Witness 07-30-11

>>- A breeze not strong enough to turn a weather vane is imparting
>>(or playing some part in imparting) rotation to the object.
>>Certainly not impossible, but perhaps rather improbable?

>Well, I suppose that means that some rotation - a slow spin, or
>perhaps even just an oscillation - is possible? The dynamics of
>the effects of a heat source in a paper balloon aren't too clear
>to me - maybe someone has experiments - but I doubt the
>resultant force would have to be perfectly symmetrical.
>Howsoever, we aren't told anything about the type and rapidity
>and duration of this reported rotation, and we can't know how
>reliably-observed and free of illusion it was, bearing in mind
>the circumstances (ex hypothesi, a small, greyish moving object
>of unfamiliar construction hundreds of feet away being
>illuminated by a handheld spotlight).

Hi Gerald, Martin, at al:

In my opinion the rotation of a passive buoyant object (e.g., a
Chinese lantern) would be driven by aerodynamic drag rather
than, say, asymmetric heating effects. I suppose that by
incorporating suitably oriented vents to expel internal warm
air, some rotational torque could be induced in pinwheel-like
fashion, but again I think the effect would be negligible except
in an absolutely static atmosphere.

At first glance, it would seem that once the object comes to
rest with respect to the mean velocity of the surrounding air,
there should be little or no net rotation thereafter. However,
if the air flow itself is rotational or shearing, then steady
rotation could presumably be induced even if the object is

Thus intrigued, I spent some time this morning observing various
floating objects in the nearby irrigation canal (not a perfect
analog, but incorporating many of the same effects as the
airborne case).

At any given moment, virtually every object was displaying at
least some rate of rotation. However, only a small fraction were
in anything like _steady_ rotation, that is, no visibly apparent
change in rotation rate over the duration of observation
(typically ~5 seconds). All others were clearly accelerating or
decelerating, even reversing, in sporadic fashion.

From which I derive nothing of much significance, except perhaps
the suggestion that an airborne object that is rotating at a
uniform rate over long time scales is _probably_ doing so
autonomously rather than as a result of aerodynamic loading. But
as Martin has pointed out, the witness's description of the
rotation is too sparse and generic for it to serve as any kind
of filter.

Taking the sighting as a whole, pending additional details I
must sympathize with the "it walks like a lantern, swims like a
lantern, and quacks like a lantern" camp. Effective
investigation requires triage, and increasingly _severe_ triage
as our culture becomes more UFO/ET saturated.


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