What follows is a panorama, assembled from 4 frames of the video so that motion, rotation, and size changes of the object are easier to see. These images are much clearer than the Quick Time animation, but it is worthwhile seeing the animation to examine the motion. Please be patient – the image is a 101k JPEG.
This is a JPEG of a JPEG, so quality may have suffered. This copy does not use any lossy compression.
Every effort was made to match the edges of the features in the frames, but there may be some imperfections.
I make no claim as to the genuineness of this video, but provide this panorama for information only.
Frames proceed left to right, as far as I know.
Note the following:
- There may be some change in the reflections on the bottom of the object from frame to frame.
- The object changes attitude.
- There is some indication of rotation between frames 1 and 2.
- The variations in angular size are minor, indicating that, if real, the trajectory is not an arc toward the observer, but is an altitude arc.
The Mexican Video – e-mail Summary
CNI News 10/16/97
On October 1, UFO researcher Tom King of Phoenix, Arizona announced over the internet that he had just viewed an extraordinary videotape shot in Mexico City on August 6. Hardly able to contain his enthusiasm, King called the daylight video of a classic flying saucer “mind-blowing.”
“It’s the piece of evidence Ufology has been waiting for since in the invention of the videocamera,” he wrote.
Since October 1, several still frames from the video have been posted on various web sites (see, for example, the frame posted at http://ift.tt/1rZ5tJr, or several frames posted at http://ift.tt/1sfJPBp)
The still frames were grabbed and posted to the internet by Fernando Camacho when the video was broadcast on Mexican television by noted newsman and UFO investigator Jaime Maussan on his show “Tercera Milenio” (Third Millenium).
Maussan says he was sent the tape on September 26, along with an explanatory letter, by the man who shot it in a wealthy downtown district of Mexico City. That man has so far insisted on anonymity, and Maussan apparently does not have the original tape.
So far, the video has not been publicly shown in the United States.
Maussan brought a copy to Village Labs in Tempe, Arizona for analysis. According to UFO investigator and filmmaker Lee Elders, copies of the video are also being analyzed at a university in Mexico and at an undisclosed facility in Nevada.
Though the anals of UFO research are replete with photo and video controversies, everyone who has seen this new tape seems to believe it ranks among the best ever shot.
CNI News editor Michael Lindemann spoke by phone with Lee Elders on October 15. Lee and his wife Britt Elders, working closely with Jaime Maussan, have created several excellent video documentaries (Messengers of Destiny, Masters of the Stars) on the Mexican UFO flap that started in 1991. Elders is closely involved with the analysis of the new videotape.
“The posting on the internet was not our decision, and I believe it was premature,” Elders said. “There’s no data to go with the images… We are moving forward to get as much science available on this piece of footage as we can before releasing it.”
Elders said that everyone working on the film seems to agree on the following:
a) the saucer-like object is between 35 and 50 feet in diameter b) the object was located approximately 1200 yards from the camera when filmed c) the object is rotating in a counter-clockwise motion d) it seems to have some kind of “cylinders” attached to the flange (the center-line of the disk) that rotate with the flange in counter-clockwise motion. These do not appear to be portholes or lightsbut rather something that is attached.
Elders gave a detailed description of what the video shows:
“When [the UFO] is first picked up by the camera — when the individual first sees it — he is at long range, and then he zooms in at maximum zoom to the craft. When you first see it, it appears to be about 300 feet above the ground. We estimate that based on the fact that a high-rise apartment house standing in front of the ship to the right seems to be somewhere between 400 and 450 feet in height, based on number of floors.
“The ship is hovering below the [top of] the apartment house. Then it rises up over 100 feet behind the apartment complex and then flies over — not exactly over, it’s still behind the complex, maybe 100 meters. Then it dips down behind the apartment house, dips in behind the twin tower to the right of the first apartment complex, and then it disappears. It does not come out at that point.
“The entire footage lasts some 35 seconds, and the quality and clarity is quite good, with the exception that the skyline over Mexico City that day was very bad. There’s a lot of haze and pollution. It was one of the worst pollution days of the year for Mexico City, on August 6, 1997. It was, I believe, a “red alert” day for pollution that day, and civil aviation was told not to fly in the area because of that difficulty… The yellowish type of sky is the only negative aspect to the footage itself. We would have loved to have had it in a crystal blue sky. The edges would have been more defined. You would probably see a little better what is on the craft.
“But what we have is still, in our opinion, probably the best footage shot in the last 50 years,” Elders said.
CNI News asked Elders what was known about the person who shot the video. He replied:
“One of the most interesting things about the tape, as far as Jaime Maussan and his crew were concerned, is that you have two men talking (on the video soundtrack) as they’re filming it. One man is filming, and I guess his friend is standing next to him. There’s a running dialogue, all in Spanish, of course — but it is so realistic, according to Jaime, that this is one of the reasons he thinks it’s really real. The two individuals were having problems containing their excitement. There was a lot of swearing going on during the filming. The ‘F’ word was used quite a bit. To Jaime, it was a ‘real’ conversation.
“We’re still trying to coax the individual to come forward,” Elders said. “The individual is afraid of losing his job. [The video] was taken during working hours, from an office building where he works. He’s concerned about his identity at this point.”
CNI News asked Elders if any other witnesses had been identified yet, and what was being done to locate them. He replied:
“We have nine witnesses now, four teenagers and five adults, in addition to the cameraman and his friend — eleven all together.
“For example, one of the witnesses is a beautiful young girl, 14 years old, quite animated. She makes her living selling tacos in the street. She was in the street that day when she saw it. It was so large that she became frightened and ran inside her home. She’s an excellent witness. We found out that after she told her father, he told her she was crazy. He wouldn’t believe her. We [Jaime Maussan’s team] found her and interviewed her, and she stuck to her story. She had no idea there was a video. We took her into a room and showed her the video after she gave us her story. What she had seen matched the video almost entirely. She was very excited and said, ‘Can I bring my father in? Now he won’t think I’m crazy.’ She was a very believable witness.
“We have a woman who was on the street looking straight up at it, almost directly overhead. I’m sure there are many more. This would be hard not to see.
“I might add that the apartment complex [in the video] is in a very wealthy sector of Mexico City,” Elders said. “I’ve been in that area several times. It would be, I guess, in the southeast part of the city. We’re still going house to house, because we’re trying to locate someone in the apartment houses there. This thing flew right by them. If someone was standing near the window, it would be like someone standing 20 feet from a railroad track, watching a train go by. We haven’t found a witness there yet. It’s a difficult place to gain access to. It’s heavily secured, a very wealthy neighborhood. To gain access, we have to go through channels and all that, and hope that somebody was home that day.”
Elders said that Jaime Maussan and his TV news team were conducting the door to door search for witnesses, but that Lee and his wife Britt were planning to join Maussan in Mexico City shortly to assist in the investigation.
Meanwhile, analysis of the videotape continues. CNI News asked Elders what had been done so far. He replied:
“We’ve done some preliminary things — we’ve blown up the saucer as much as we can. It’s grainy, but you can see the ‘cylinder’ arrangements. We’ve looked at the film itself pretty closely. We do know that our master is a copy. But it seems like the master may have been shot on a digital camera. It was either transferred on a time-base corrector which gave it the digital signature on the film, or it was shot on a consumer-type digital camera, which we’re hoping for. We do not have the original master yet.
“We’ve also done some high-contrast work on the film. We’ve taken all the color out, so it almost looks black and white, but we’re getting much better definition. You can see the rotation much better. We’re learning more from the high contrast than from the original copy.
“We know that the footage was taken in a northerly direction, between 4:00 and 5:00 pm on Wednesday, August 7. On the left side of the flying saucer, about 30% of the left side, you have a flare or glare from sunlight, and the other 70% on the right side there is no flare or glare, meaning the sun was to the left, or west, and they were shooting to the north.
“Also, the saucer was making a sound — a high-pitched buzz,” Elders added. “We have heard that there were animal disturbances during the sighting as well. I need more information on that before I can say more.”
Elders told CNI News that he hopes some reputable scientists will become involved in evaluating the film. But he also wants to see it released to the public as soon as possible.
“We hope to have scientists vouch for this,” he said. “The one thing we don’t want to get into is some ‘expert’ sitting in a television studio and making a subjective opinion of what he’s seeing. We’re tired of that, and we think the public is tired of it too. They want to see some nuts and bolts — what kind of computers and software were used, what kind of testing was done. I would love to have [NASA imaging expert] Michael Malin take a look at it. Something like that would be ideal, I think.”
He hopes enough testing can be conducted in the next few weeks to permit public release.
“The next stage is going to be arranging for it to be shown nationally, meaning FOX or NBC or something like that,” Elders said. “We’re not going to wait for a [privately-produced] video. This is something that should be released as soon as possible.”
Elders has seen a lot of videotape from Mexico. CNI News asked him how this latest tape compared with others he has seen. He said:
“Britt and I, working with Jaime and his crew, have been investigating the Mexico UFOs since 1991. We’ve looked at a lot of footage. There are over 5,000 videos now, just from the Mexico flap. We have probably looked at 15 or 16 hundred of them, and over 40 still photographs as well. We’ve been able to classify 15 different kinds of UFOs so far. But this one looks different from anything we’ve seen [in Mexico] before. This one looks almost like a Billy Meier beamship, a classic flying saucer.”
The still frames posted on the internet do indeed show an object that closely resembles the “classic flying saucer” often associated with controversial Swiss UFO contactee Eduard “Billy” Meier. The image also resembles the famous “Sport Model” described by controversial “saucer mechanic” Robert Lazar and immortalized by the Testors Model Corporation.
In a statement recently circulated by email, Arizona-based UFO researcher Bill Hamilton made some additional observations about the new videotape after viewing it repeatedly. He wrote:
“The domed saucer is hovering, apparently rotating on its axis, and wobbling. When it starts to move to the right to pass behind a multi-story building, it tilts slightly back or away from its direction of motion. If this were a tethered object (and it would have to be large), one would expect it to tilt forward in the direction of motion as it was pulled forward. That does not seem to be the case… Under magnification and negative imaging no cable or tether can be seen.”
Hamilton noted that the apparent size and behavior of the object, plus the statements of at least nine additional witnesses who viewed the object from various locations, seemed to require either an extremely elaborate hoax or a genuine craft in the air.
In an October 6 interview on “Sightings on the Radio” with Jeff Rense, expert video analyst Jim Dilettoso, owner of Village Labs in Tempe, Arizona, where the video is being examined, said his first impression on seeing the object was that it was a large prop tethered to a helicopter.
“It was a surprise to me that something like this would be so clear, and that I would have it right in front of me,” he said. “So when I first saw it, I immediately thought, ‘Oh, tethered to a helicopter.'”
But careful analysis convinced him that the object was not tethered from above, he said. The object did not behave in a manner consistent with something suspended in the air by a cable. Measurements of the object’s wobble, and the steadiness of its lateral movement across the frame, suggested an object under its own power. “It’s a matter of physics and geometry,” Dilettoso said.
CNI News will continue to follow this developing story.
Graham Birdsall 10/24/97
Date: Fri, 24 Oct 1997 06:39:57 -0400 From: Graham William Birdsall <firstname.lastname@example.org> Subject: Mexican UFO Video Tape To: UFO UPDATES TORONTO <email@example.com>
The emergence of yet another UFO video tape from Mexico has caused quite a stir.
I am of course referring to the sequence which was allegedly taken in Mexico City on 6 August 1997.
I had previously seen the still images, and in Brisbane, Australia, saw the complete footage for the first time, courtesy of Italian Giorgio Bongiovanni, who was sent a copy by his friend, Mexican TV Producer Jaime Maussan.
My own copy arrived in the UK while I was in Brisbane, attending the Australian UFO Symposium organised by the Queensland UFO Network (an excellent and extremely well organised event).
My copy was sent by Mexican UFO researcher Santiago Garza, who I had telephoned in Mexico City to try and discover more about the stories which were breaking out all over the Internet some weeks ago.
I would like to share with you some of his written comments to me which accompanied said video tape:
– START –
“It was presented for the first time on television here in Mexico, on Sunday, 28 September 1997, during the TV show ‘3er. Milenio’ (3rd Millenium), a journalist-orientated programme that focuses on UFOs and ecological subjects.
“The show is hosted by Jaime Maussan and Daniel Munos, good friends of mine.
“The video presents an alleged big, disc-shaped craft with oscillating movements, that flies very slow at low altitude between two known buildings in the heart of Mexico City.
“Unfortunately, the film lasts just a few seconds. The quality is poor and the voices you hear supposedly belong to the persons making the recording.
“Daniel Munos told me that almost all the audio was censured due to the ‘hard language’.
“Now, there is a general feeling among the researchers here in Mexico that the film is a hoax.
“However, Jaime Maussan took the original video to Jim Dilletoso [sic] in Phoenix, Arizona, for analysis. I’ve seen this footage before but didn’t pay much interest since I considered it highly suspicious and besides, these past few months there have been a lot of fakes (some sent to our offices – Contacto OVNI), and we are aware of a possible ‘trap’.
“I interviewed Daniel Munoz, Jaime’s assistant, by phone after you contacted me and he gave me details of the story.
“On 24 September 1997, a package was received in the 3er. Milenio production offices, sent to Jaime Maussan from an anonymous source. It contained the video, supposedly filmed on 6 August 1997 in downtown Mexico City.
“A letter that accompanied the video tape said that two friends made the recording from the top of a building during a lunch brake. They wanted to remain anonymous because they didn’t want any trouble from their employer. Jaime and Daniel located the building and claim to have found several witnesses.
“However, Daniel told me that they discovered during their investigation that the people who made the recording, work in a company with high quality computer software, and that these offices are situated at the very top of the building from where the recording was allegedly made. The whole thing is highly suspicious.
“A second showing on TV was noticeable for several contradictions – one witness said the footage was filmed at night!”
– END –
A major UFO conference is being staged in Acapulco, Mexico between 4-7 December, an event sponsored and organised by Jaime Maussan and Televisa (Mexico TV Network), so I’m sure that whatever analysis has been conducted on the video tape will receive due attention.
For our part, initial analysis suggests that the footage is highly suspect and points to an elaborate hoax.
All video tapes carry a time signature at the top of the footage – we suspect several such signatures might well feature on the “poor copy” received by Jaime Maussan, although he makes no mention of this. Nor does he state whether he received 8mm film or a first generation copy.
The more signatures that appear, the more likely the tape has undergone the ‘treatment’.
The object is in focus throughout – an extraordinary feature when combining manual and auto focus.
The ‘spinning’ effect on the object demonstrates the same sequence over and over again.
The cameraman appears to anticipate the movement of the object – as though he knew when and where it was going in advance.
When the object disappears behind an apartment block, one would expect the cameraman to pan back, go left and right to see where it might have gone – it doesn’t happen.
These are basic observations arrived at in less than 30 minutes.
The object does appear to have been ‘brush stroked’ in part, and our provisional analysis suggests that the skyline and apartment blocks have been filmed in advance, and the computer generated ‘UFO’ then laid on top.
Given one has the right sort of computer software, and a little money and energy to spend, all things are possible.
On first glance, I can understand the excitement of those who consider this footage to be the most impressive ever taken of a UFO, but I’m afraid the analysis tells a different story.
I will be showing the footage during my lecture at the Contact International (UK) conference in Oxford this coming Sunday – probably the first UK showing if I’m not mistaken. Those who turn up can judge it for themselves.
The conference runs from 11.00am – 5.00pm and is being staged at Exeter Hall, Kidlington, Oxford, on the main road to Banbury. Details can be obtained by calling the organiser, Brian James, on 01235 851319 or 01865 784200.
Graham W. Birdsall (Editor)
Michael Hesemann – 10/25/97
Date: Sat, 25 Oct 1997 22:50:45 -0400 From: James Easton <firstname.lastname@example.org> Subject: Mexico City Video To: UFO UpDates <email@example.com>
Courtesy of the CompuServe “Sightings!” forum, some comments from Michael Hesemann, which, if I had more time, I would have asked for permission to cross-post, but in the interest of sharing information, assume is quite agreeable:
FACTS: 1. I called my friends working in the tower of Mexico City International Airport (Benito Juarez Airport). The object was NOT located on radar at the time in question.
2. The witness situation is rather dubious. There are a couple of people who called and claimed they saw the same craft either at daylight or at night. The sighting took place in the Lomas Chapultepec area of the Tecamalchaco-district, 6 miles NW of the city center, what is just nothing in a 20-million-town – it’s so close to the city center! The two tall buildings visible in the film are office buildings, one belongs to “a jewish company” (whatever that means… a branch of an Israeli company? Jews from the US? From Mexico?). Televisa-coworker Daniel Munoz tried to interview the people working there, but was not able to do so..
3. It was NOT in the news or papers in DF (Mexico districto federal) the days after.
4. The video was sent anonymously to Jaime Maussan.
PRELIMINARY CONCLUSION: In the moment there are some indications that the film indeed might be a clever hoax, UNLESS the witness situation changes. Since state-of-the-art computer techniques make it nearly impossible to detect any FX forgery on video, ONLY SOME GOOD AND CREDIBLE WITNESSES CAN SAVE THE SITUATION.
Since I fly to Mexico in 5 weeks I will perform a field investigation on site and try to find those, of course using all interviews Jaime did as a starting point. Let’s see what comes out of it but, until then, stay rather sceptical. [End]
I did ask Mike if I could quote him that, “state-of-the-art computer techniques make it nearly impossible to detect any FX forgery on video”.
Liz Edwards –
Date: Sun, 26 Oct 1997 11:05:03 -0700 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Andromeda.net- Anderson, Jared) To: Updates <email@example.com> Subject: Edwards attacks Mexican Footage
I got this post from ISUR’s web board at http://ift.tt/1rZ5woL
Mexico City UFO Video: Real Or Hoaxed? by Liz Edwards
As an avid investigative researcher and an artist I have a particular interest in the vast realm of the knowledge we are given today and, so, I wonder. “What is real and what isn’t? Through the miracle of the computer, limitless visual and sensory horizons have been opened to us. On the other hand, this new genie can also be led to do things that are less than genuine. So effectively, in fact, it is almost to the point now that we are sometimes forced to question what we perceive as ‘reality’ itself, so seductive to our senses, and analysis-resistant, can some of these computer spawned and enhanced creations be.” Listening to Sightings.com on the radio on Sunday, October 5, with Jeff Rense, I was more than excited when he had longtime UFO researchers Lee & Brit Elders on as guests recently. They have deservedly earned great fame and respect as the key chroniclers of the massive and continuing waves of UFO sightings in Mexico which began during the 1991 solar eclipse as ancient Mayan and Aztec legends had predicted. The Elder’s three videos showing but a few hundreds of the thousands of Mexican sightings are landmarks in UFO research. “The big news, of course, was the less than 30 seconds of daylight video of a UFO allegedly taped by an anonymous source in Mexico City on August 6, 1997. The tape made its way into the possession of Mexican researcher-journalist Jaime Maussan who sent a copy to Lee and Brit, with whom he has worked closely for years. ” During the show with Jeff, the Elders, and computer analyst Jim Dilettoso, emphasized that nothing from the video would be released until complete computer analysis, from several sources, had been completed. Apparently, Jaime Maussan had other ideas and went on Mexican tv and aired the video to a vast audience South of the border. As you have seen on Jeff’s website, at least one person taped the television broadcast and four ‘video grabs’ from it began appearing on the internet. ” Taking one of the freeze frames (ufomex3.jpg) into a program that I use to examine graphics , I was able to enhance the picture. I was able to raise the ufo into be more visible status and with more definition. It was my determination there was nothing corrupt or that had been added to this graphic, and so I happily sent it to Jeff at Sightings.com. The picture looked authentic and believable. That enhancement is available for viewing from the linked Headline on the site. ” I was so intrigued with these spectacular shots that I didn’t stop there, however, and continued to work with the stills of the ufo. I was also spurred on knowing that top scientists were doing their own examinations which further underscored the importance of these pictures. ” On October 17, 1997, using my own formula and techniques, it became clear, to me at least, that one of the four pictures appeared to be very different. This particular shot reacted to my experiments in a peculiar way and produced something unusual which set off warning lights. If you look at this enhancement, you see a ‘star burst’ of pixels. I had no explanation initially but since then have come to a couple of important and compelling conclusions
” A few days after my discovery, the video itself began appearing on the internet offered via a huge download of almost 4 megabytes. Several UFO researchers sent the download to me and were raving about the stunning images in it. And it is an amazing piece of video. As I examined it I wondered who had made it available. When you access the download, there is no identification of the source….the download just starts moving. This also intrigued me as I remembered that Mexican investigator, Jaime Maussan, reported the video had first come to him via “anonymous” sources. As I probed and searched in an effort to identify the source of the internet download, I learned many things. ” This is what I now believe has happened. Please realize that this is a preliminary conclusion at this time and my investigation continues. We all want the truth. We deserve the truth…whatever it may be. Moreover, we should NOT be deceived by today’s wondrous technology. ” 1. First of all, we have a film sent anonymously to Jaime Maussan. This alone is highly suspicious. If YOU had taken the greatest daylight video in history, which could result in substantial financial gain, not to mention world notoriety and a place in UFO history…would you turn it over and hide? Would you lurk behind the scenes while others took your work and good fortune and profited and enhanced their reputations? I doubt it. ” 2. Second, there are the enhanced pictures. You can see some definition in the first one and this has drawn attention to some of the famous Meier photos. The enhanced ‘star burst’ picture shows detail in pixilation that is questionable, and raises doubt about authenticity. ” 3. Third. I have been able to discover that the Mexico UFO video download is tagged from an unidentified source site which is owned by a company that is TOPS in the field of 3D COMPUTER GAME PROGRAMMING. This is very strange. I will be talking to this company by phone on Monday morning and will question them about how they got tagged with the video, and why it is being offered from an unidentified source site. ” Brilliant graphics programs like “3D Max Studio” will let you design your own games…and can do many remarkable things. If you know what’s out there, how it works, and how images can be manipulated and integrated into various formats, almost ANYTHING can be done. If a tape like the Mexican UFO video could be hoaxed, a company like this one might be a prime suspect. And to have discovered that it is, in fact, involved in the sudden distribution over the internet of the Mexico City tape is a strange coincidence to say the least. ” 4. Fourth. At this time we are reviewing other UFO photos some of which are similar to some of the famous, or infamous, Billy Meier photos. It has been brought to my attention that they may be the same type craft as the Mexico City image. Extensive comparisons to these other pictures are currently being made and we will be posting them shortly. ” Now, here is how I think the Mexico UFO video could have been produced: ” 1. Take the video footage of Mexico City with the apartment buildings in the foreground. 2. Place that footage into a high-powered state of the art computer game graphics program. 3. Immerse/insert the ufo into the Mexico City scene. 4. Code the graphics program to make the UFO “move”. 5. Directly from the computer, copy the now UFO animated scene onto a videotape. 6. Take the tape and play it on a tv. 7. Use a camcorder and record the footage directly off the screen of the tv monitor. And, voila! You have a genuine “UFO video” which would show NO electronic, technical, or graphics discrepancies under subsequent analysis! That is why the Mexico City video has shown no discrepancies!!!!! ” I want to repeat, these are only my preliminary findings as of Saturday, evening, 10-25-97. It is up to each of you to consider these issues individually. The main purpose here is that we find the truth. That is what I am trying to do. I would prefer the Mexico City video to be real, but I refuse to be hoaxed by today’s technology which is capable of some fantastic feats of deception. ” The UFO research community has been scored and ridiculed too many times for its beliefs, and it is dead wrong to assume that all UFO sightings are fakes or erroneous identification of various flying objects and ‘natural’ phenomena. For the UFO research community to be burdened now with a video that is manufactured but believed to be genuine is something that cannot be accepted or tolerated. ” My special thanks to my colleagues Kent Steadman, of Steadman Graphics, for his expertise in so many areas; and to Dave Zidek for his remarkable technical computer support. ” — Liz Edwards I Wonder Productions
Chris Penrose – 10/28/97
From: Penrose Christopher <firstname.lastname@example.org> Date: Tue, 28 Oct 97 12:42:16 +0900 To: email@example.com Subject: Re: UFO UpDate: Edwards attacks Mexican Footage
From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Andromeda.net- Anderson, Jared) To: Updates <email@example.com> Subject: Edwards attacks Mexican Footage
>Third. I have been able to discover that the Mexico UFO video download >is tagged from an unidentified source site which is owned by a company >that is TOPS in the field of 3D COMPUTER GAME PROGRAMMING.
Ms. Edwards fails to provide us with any information on where she downloaded the video from the internet. On my web site,
I provide the names of all the sources of the quicktime footage that I have access to (Fernando Camacho etc.). Regardless, Ms. Edwards should focus on the source of the video itself, rather than upon the internet site that happens to have a link to the quicktime footage. The quicktime footage, I imagine, is proliferating like wildfire across the internet. This game company, unless they are the ones who mailed Jaime the initial VHS tape, is just using sharing the video like everyone else interested on the internet.
Bruce Maccabee 11/13/97 (Note: all Maccabee comments from UFO Updates)
Date: Thu, 13 Nov 1997 21:44:29 -0500 From: bruce maccabee <firstname.lastname@example.org> Subject: Comments on Mexico City Video of 08-06-97 To: UFO UpDates – Toronto <email@example.com>
INITIAL COMMENTS ON MEXICO CITY VIDEO OF Aug. 6, 1997
PRELIMINARY DISCUSSION —-***TO BE REVISED AS NECESSARY***
THIS IS BASED ON ANALYSIS OF A VIDEO COPY (originating source unknown)
The copy includes the direct video, a 1.6x blowup negative video (sky is dark, UFO appears bright against sky) and a 7x blowup.
The video begins with a “wide angle” shot and immediately zooms in. Once zoomed in it stays that way. The wide angle shot shows numerous nearby buildings. They appear dark against the sky background. What seem to be distant structures are faint in the haze, i.e., they have low contrast with the sky, as expected from atmospheric extinction. The atmospheric extinction coefficient could be estimated from assumed intrinsic brightness of the buildings if the distances were known. This coefficient is probably given in meteorological reports for the time (the “visibility” or “visibility distance”). This could be important in determining the intrinsic brightness of the UFO, assuming it is a real object at some distance. I do not know the distances of buildings in the pictures but something like thousands of feet to a mile or so seems more reasonable than, say, 3 to five miles. There are enough structures in the background so that using parallax one should be able to locate ths position of the videographer.
The UFO is generally well centered. The camera jiggle is obvious and looks as one would expect for a hand held camera. The jiggle is much more noticeable after zoom. Once the UFO starts to move to the right the camera pans with it, jiggling as it goes. The UFO motion seems to be at about a constant rate and so is the pan motion. After the UFO disappears behind the second building the camera sighting direction continues to move to the right as if the videographer expects to see the UFO appear from behind the second building, which would be logical based on the previous continuous motion.
The UFO is initially stationary but obviously tilting back and forth or wobbling at a constantrate. A 7x video blowup shows left-to-right motion of diffuse (edges not sharp) darker areas or dark spots which seem to be on the rim of the UFO. If these are fixed to the surface, then they suggest, but do not prove, rotational motion, counter-clockwise as seen from above. (The dark spots could be “moving” left to right on a non-rotating UFO, thereby giving the impression of motion just as changing light patterns in an electronic sign can give the impression of motion.) I would have to say that the way these appear at the left edge of the UFO and then move to the right is not exactly what I would expect if the spots were fixed with respect to the surface of the UFO. However, the “funny appearance” of the dark spots as they appear and move may be a result of the atmospheric haze (causing low contrast) plus the artifacts of electronic 7x zoom (these features would be very small, almost invisible, in the un-electronic zoomed images). there more be more clarity in the original video. Aside from the “funny appearance,” the combination of the motion of the dark spots and the wobble certainly gives a good impression of rotation with wobble or “precession” (see below). An estimate of the rate of the assumed rotation, as based on the motion of the black spots, is 6 to 7 seconds per revolution (about 0.16 rev/sec or 1.0 rad/sec). In other words, it is not spinning rapidly. The wobble requires about 2 sec to complete a cycle (0.5 rev/sec or 3 rad/sec).
After remaining stationary for several seconds the UFO then “instantaneously” accelerates (see below) to a constant velocity which takes it to the right on an upward sloping path. It seems to pass behind the upper left corner of one building and then, because of its upward trajectory it appears above the building. Frame by frame analysis of both the disappearance and the reappearance show consistent “cutting away” of the image, as if it were a real object moving slowly out of view behind the building and then reappearing from behind the building. After reappearance it continues its steady right hand upward motion and wobble. If moves toward a second, higher building. It disappears for good behind the second building.
After the initial camera zoom the UFO image on a 14″ diag monitor is about 25 mm wide and about 7 mm high. Since I don’t know the effective focal length of the camera lens I can only hazard a guess that the angular size might be on the order of 1/2 to 1 degree. Just before it disappears the second and final time the UFO image length is 20 mm. This suggests that it was about 25% farther from the camera when it went out of sight.
The first nearby building that the UFO goes “behind” – or appears to go behind – has some square windows 5 mm on a side on the monitor. Hence the UFO initially appears to be about 5 times larger than these windows. If, for example, the window were 5 ft wide, then the UFO was more than 25 ft in diameter (assumed round, but there is no proof of this – no “top view” or “bottom view”). assuming it was as it appears, farther away than the building. All further dimensions are scaled according to this assumption, lacking any further information. The UFO was apparently farther away than the building, perhaps as much as twice as far, but not very much farther because it would have been barely visible in the the smog/haze. The UFO image has areas that are darker than the sky background, an important factor discussed below. If the UFO were miles away it would “fade into” the haze and the dark areas would not be as obvious as they are.
If the UFO were twice as far as the building, then it would be about 50 ft in diameter, assuming as before that the square windows are 5 ft wide.
I have studied the UFO acceleration by plotting the position of the right end of the UFO image relative to the building it (seems to ) disappear behind. For several seconds the spacing is constant with fluctuations (83-85 mm on the monitor). Fluctuations in the spacing are a result of the continual wobble of the UFO combined with the frame-by-frame fluctuations in the image shape and “edge fuzziness”, a phenomenon caused most likely by electronic noise in the video camera. Then, suddenly, there is motion to the right (toward the building). The abrupt change from stationary to moving is noticeable to the naked eye when running the video forward (in time). The UFO image is seen to suddenly start moving to the right, what seems to be an “inertia-less” (instantaneous) onset of motion, with what appears to be a constant velocity. When viewed in reverse, the UFO is moving constantly to the left and appears to suddenly stop, as if hitting an invisible brick wall. (Crash dummies inside?)
The left edge of the building is sufficiently sharply focused in the 1.6X blowup video negative (sky dark) to allow reasonably accurate (to within 1 mm on the monitor) measurements of the spacing between the left end of the UFO image and the image of the edge of the building. This method allows for measurement of the UFO motion irrespective of the camera jiggle, i.e., by using the building as a reference the camera jiggle is essentially removed. (It still has the effect of smearing the edges of the images slightly.) A graph of spacing vs frame number shows the following odd result: in one (or less than 1) or at most 2 frames the UFO achieves its full foward speed. There appears to be no swinging as one would expect for a model hanging on a string. Also, the rotation and wobble (precession) do not appear to be affected by the onset of motion. (More precise analysis using the original video may turn up some slight changes in the rotation and wobble.) Using the estimate of the UFO being 25 ft in diameter, the steady speed to the right corresponds to about 16.9 ft/sec or about 11.5 mph. This would be doubled if the UFO were twice as far away (and changed in proportion to the assumed UFO size and distance scale). If it achieved this 16.9 ft/sec speed in 1 frame, 1/30 sec, then it achieved an acceleration of about 16 “g’s” (16 times the 32 ft/sec^2 acceleration of gravity). If in two frames, then 8 g’s. This sort of acceleration would be enough to cause wobble in any model hanging on a string. This acceleration, since it seems to cause no effect to the “normal” wobble and rotation of the UFO must be acting through its “center of mass” (else, there would a torque or twisting motion that would change the wobble in some way). If the UFO weighed 1 pound and accelerated in 1/30 sec, then the force applied would be 16 pounds. If it weighed 1 ton (2,000 lbs) the accelerating force would be the equivalent of the weight of 16 tons.
NOTE: THESE SPECIFIC NUMBERS ARE ONLY ROUGH ESTIMATES TO GET “IN THE BALLPARK”. THE ACTUAL VALUES DEPEND UPON DIMENSIONS WHICH ARE PRESENTLY ONLY GUESSED AT.
CONSIDERING THE HOAX HYPOTHESIS:
In general there are three possibilities: a hoax, a misidentification or the “real thing” (a True UFO – unexplainable as conventional a phenomenon). The possibility of a misidentification seems unlikely because of the shape. Even if one could prove that there was a 25 – 50 foot blimp with a gondola on top that was hovering and rocking so that the front and rear ends alternately went up and down (but not rotating) and having dark areas moving long the side near toward the camera, this would not explain the “instantaneous” acceleration. That leaves only the hoax or the real thing.
Factors to be considered and their relevance to the hoax hypothesis are: 1. The presumed hoax must either use a model of some sort or it is an electronic construction
1a. If a model, then it is not likely a full sized model at a great distance (thousands of feet, beyond the buildings) from the camera (rotating, wobbling, accelerating), but more likely a small model within a room where the video was shot. Therefore reject the full sized model hypothesis. (However, it is to be noted that this is the only method that could potentially create witnesses to the “UFO” who were not associated with the hoax.)
1b. The model must be some distance from the camera for the image to be in focus at full zoom (don’t know this minimum focal distance). This places minimum size requirements on the field of view of the camera as compared to the location of the camera. That is, if this were videotaped in a room looking out through a window, the window must be big enough so that it does not appear in the video even when unzoomed.
1c. If a 3 dimensonal model it cannot be reflected in glass. One might imagine a small model, illuminated in some way so as to make a visible reflection in a glass window. Looking through the window the camera would “see” the background objects (buildings, sky) and a reflection of the model. If videoed with a hand-held camera the whole picture, background and model reflection, would jiggle together, as would happen with a real object at a great distance. The ufo model could be rotating and wobbling. By moving the model appropriately one could make it appear to move. However, it would be “difficult” to give it an “instantaneous” acceleration followed by a constant velocity. It could not simply be a small model rotating at the end of a string. It could be mounted on a rigid rod with appropriate rotation and wobble dynamics created by a mechanism. However, if the model is bright enough to have its reflection visible against the bright sky it would not seem to disappear behind the distant buildings. It’s image would appear to be “in front of” the buildings. And last but certainly not least, the image of the reflection of a model in a window cannot be less bright than the background since background light coming through the window would add to the reflected light from the model. The fact that the UFO image is darker than the sky means this is not a simple “reflection on glass” hoax.
1d. Similar problems arise if one imagines reflecting the background on glass with a lighted model farther away than the glass. In this case one could make the model seem to move behind the building. Simply place a black paper cutout on the back side of the glass where the building image appears. Now when the model moves behind the building image the light from the model will not get through. However, when the model is silhouetted against the sky there will be no portion of the model image that is darker than the sky.
1e. A “masked reflection” would also be “difficult”. In this case a cutout with the shape and size of the reflection of the model is placed beyond the glass to block background light from coming through the glass where the image of the model appears. Motion of the model would have to be accompanied by similar, perfectly registered, motion of the cutout.
1f. One big question is how to make a model UFO that is brighter than the dark building appear to move behind a building? Imagine being in the room where the video was taken, looking out through the window. One sees all the nearby and distant buildings. Then create a flat dark model cutout of the nearby buildings and set it up some distance, like several feet, from the window. The 2-D model building is therefore closer to the camera than the window and the camera is many feet from the window. However, the camera must be far enough away from the model building so that when videoed with full zoom the edges are still in good focus. (This sets size requirements on the room and window. See below.) Now take a small 3-D UFO model suspended in some way. Have it illuminated and painted or colored in such a way as to be somewhat darker than the sky brightness. Naturally this model must have black spots on its rim and must be rotating and wobbling in a steady manner. This, and the onset of motion acceleration) would require a support which is reasonably rigid. Perhaps a mechanism inside the model would create the rotation and wobble (wobble about 3 times as fast as the rotation) and another mechanism on the floor would drive the horizontal and vertical components of motion of the support once the “UFO” starts to move. In this case the model UFO could move behind the model buildings in a convincing manner. This method would require some effort at model building, including construction of a mechanized model UFO and support system, alignment of the model buildings with the real buildings as seen through the window (I assume there really are buildings at the locations indicated in the video!), and, finally, careful videography with appropriate lighting (not easy!) using a handheld camera. It might also be necessary to shoot the scene from a room with a large window and to use a special lens on the camera so that the unzoomed view does not show the edges of the window.
As mentioned above, the distance from the camera to the (flat) model buildings must be large enough so that the edges are in good focus. This sets a minimum size requirement on the room that depends upon the zoom magnification. A reasonable guess is that to have the distant buildings in good focus and the presumed nearby model buildings also in good focus would require a distance from the camera to the models of 20-50 ft. this requirement, in turn, sets a size requirement on the window. It must be large enough so that the window edges do not appear in the picture at the beginning when unzoomed.
1g. An even more expensive and time consuming way is to “bring the whole scene into the studio.” That is, create a model of the whole scene as viewed from the window under hazy conditions. This would be extremely complicated and sophisticated. A model of the scene could involve models of the nearby buildings and, as a background for the distant buildings, a large photograph of the real scene, like a “diorama.” A UFO model would then be supported in some invisible way at a distance from the camera that is greater than the distance from the model buildings and then of course, it would be “easy” to make it move behind the model buildings.
The UFO model would have to be supported in a manner such as described in 1f above in order to make it move, rotate and wobble without introducing a swinging motion characteristic of a model suspended on a string. If the model were supported by a transparent rod, for example, a mechanism could be devised to make the model rotate and wobble as seen. A lightweight model on a rigid rod would accelerate quickly with little wobble or vibration. This might also necessitate some special optics (lenses) for the camera to make the zoom compatible with the likely short distance (5 – 20 feet from the camera to the diorama). An actual haze effect could be synthesized by using as a background a large photo taken on a clear day and then blowing water vapor or fog into the model scene to create the reduction of contrast inherent with haze.
However, to make this convincing several model buildings at different distances would be created within the diorama. But this would require sophisticated model building, a mechanical operating system for the model and its motion, considerable time and considerable expense.
So far, the bottom line on the hoax possibility using a model is that it probably could be done, but would require a considerable effort and expense.
2a. How about the possibility of an electronic construction? In this case one imagines a video of the background scene with the UFO image added in electronically. Because the image jiggles right along with the images of the buildings, this hand-held jiggle must be somehow deduced by the software frame by frame and then added to the frame-by-frame location of the UFO image.
2b Alternatively one might imagine that the scene was shot with a tripod mounted camera showing the more of the scene than actually appears in the video. This sampling of the scene was at high resolution (many pixels). The scene was a single, stationary frame. This single large frame was copied many times (about 700). Then the UFO image was added frame-by-frame. About 700 frames were created which show the UFO image first stationary and then moving frame by frame to the right and upward at a constant speed. On a frame by frame basis the UFO image was partially “erased” in a ste-by-step manner as it “moved behind” the image of the first building, and then it was “created” as it seemed to appear from behind the building. After the series of frames with the UFO had been created, then the dynamics of the camera vibration and panning were simulated. One can imagine this was done by making a frame-by-frame mapping of the first (700) frames onto a second series of about 700 frames. Each of the second series of frames was a subset of the first, i.e., a smaller frame size (fewer pixels). Initially in the unzoomed section the new frames were about the same size as the orignal frames. However, the zoom was creased by using “pixel magnification” and this justifies using high pixel resolution in the first set of frames. The center of each new frame is a “semi-random” location relative to the center of the original frame in such a way that the centers of the new frames wander about the original frame center to synthesize camera vibration. Once the UFO image starts to move in the original frames, the mean center point of the second series of frames also begins to move in a “random walk” manner characteristic of a hand-held panning camera. One can imagine that by using a method such as just outlined the video wwas constructed. Naturally this would require very sophisticated computer based image construction…Hollywood level, probably.
COMMENT ON HOAX HYPOTHESIS: there may be other techniques not mentioned above. However, it would seem that if this was a hoax then it was extremely well done. Of course, no method except the full scale UFO hoax with a real object thousands of feet from the camera would create bonafide witnesses. Hence if there are witnesses and it can be proven that they have no relationship to the video, then this can be labelled a real event! The video might be able to stand on its own even in the absence of witnesses. However, it is difficult to imagine something as obvious as a 25-50 ft UFO flying close to city buildings would be noticed by only the videographer.
RELATION BETWEEN ROTATION AND WOBBLE:
The continuous dynamic motion of the UFO is intriguing. If a hoax the constancy of the motion implies some motor driven mechanism that keeps the rotation and wobbling steady.
However, if not a hoax….
Assume the UFO can be modelled as a rotating solid disc of some mass m. The average or mean axis of rotation is assumed to be (nearly) vertical. However the instantaneous axis (the spin axis at any particular instant) does not appear to be vertical. If you imagine the spin axis as a line, this line appears to make an angle with the (assumed) vertical mean axis. This angle may be (seems to be) constant. As time goes on this line sweeps out – or lies “on” – a cone shaped surface in space, with the apex of the cone at the center of the disc. (Note: The earth has a “wobble” or precession such that the instantaneous spin axis of the earth rotates about the average spin axis every 26,000 years (about).)
If the wobble is actually a uniform precession of the spin axis, as with a gyroscope or any spinning body, then there must be a torque (twisting force) acting on the disc in a direction always perpendicular to the spin axis (if not perpendicular, the torque would change the spin rate as well as the precession rate). There is a “simple” (nothing is simple!) approximate relation between the torque, the precession rate and the spin angular momentum: T = PM, where P is the angular rate of precession (in radians per second; 2 pi radians = 360 degrees), T is the applied torque and M is the angular memomentum about the spin axis. For a uniformly thick disc of mass m, M = (1/2)msr^2 where s is the spin rate (in radians per second) and r is the radius. In this case s is about 1 rad/sec and P is approximately 3 rad/sec. Unfortunately there is no way of knowing what the effective mass of the UFO might be. Nor is there any indication of what the torque might be. If we knew either or these we could calculate the other and, perhaps, learn something interesting. This torque might be a result of a huge magnetic field associated with the UFO being acted upon by the magnetic field of the earth, although considering that the spin axis is nearly vertical it would seem that only the vertical component of the earth’s field would be involved. It might also be a torque applied by the UFO to itself in some way to maintain the orientation of the UFO relative to the local earth surface as the earth spins.
TO BE REVISED AS INFORMATION BECOMES AVAILABLE
Bruce Maccabee – 11/15/97
Date: Sat, 15 Nov 1997 00:48:53 -0500 From: bruce maccabee <firstname.lastname@example.org> Subject: MORE MEXICO VIDEO ANALYSIS Sender: bruce maccabee <email@example.com> To: UFO UpDates – Toronto <firstname.lastname@example.org>
MEXICO CITY VIDEO ANALYSIS PRELIMINARY DISCUSSION PART TWO
I have discovered new and significant information from my continued study of the video. Before I present it I would like to point out that I am working from a video copy made from a tape that was received over the “airwaves” by a person in Mexico City. Therefore it is not as clear as the original. In fact, the pictures in the just-published November issue of the MUFON Journal are clearer. Hence I many hope for yet further information when I get a “perfect” copy of the video.
Those of you who subscribe to the MUFON Journal will see printed therein information that was circulated in the network over a month ago (Bill Hamilton’s initial report of Oct 1 on UFO Updates and a report from UFO Roundup of Oct. 12).
Further analysis of the video shows that the zoom factor is about 4. This is low for the typical videocamera. Probably the camera was partly zoomed before the first video images. I assume it was zoomed to maximum. This has bearing on the focal length and on the field of view and on the hoax hypotheses discussed in the first part of this analysis.
The UFO appears on video for 23 seconds. The video continues for another 11 seconds after it disappears behind the second building. At the beginning of the video the UFO is stationary for about 8 seconds before moving to the right.
Further checks of the wobble rate confirm that the wobble cycle is approximately 2.2 (+/- 0.2) sec/wobble, or about (1/2) wobble per second. A further check of the rotation rate confirms the roughly 0.16 cycles/sec. or about 6 sec per revolution cited previously.
Bill Hamilton wrote that the rotation rate was once per second, but I don’t think this is correct. The moving dark spots are what give the impression of rotation.
I measured the number of frames it takes for a spot to move 0.2 times the length (diameter) of the (assumed circular) disc image.
This motion was measured at the center of the disc image and so corresponds to an angle (relative to the center of the disc) of 0.2 radians (almost exactly). This measurement was difficult to make because the dark spots were so diffuse (could do better with a better copy of the video blowup). However, I found that it requires 5 to 7 frames for a spot to move 0.2 rad. Picking 6 frames as an average number, this means 0.2 rad per (6/30 sec) or 0.2 rad / (1/5 sec) = 1.0 rad/sec. But there are 2 pi = 6.28 (approximately) radians in a revolution, so it requires 6.28 second per revolution. The inverse of this is 0.16 revolutions per second, which is the value given in the first part of this analysis (but without justification).
The UFO’s horizontal motion relative to the left hand edge of the first building was discussed in the first part of this analysis. The velocity was found to be constant to a good degree of accuracy as long as the UFO was visible. After the UFO reappeared above the first building and traveled in a level trajectory toward the second it slowed down. Just before it disappeared it was going about 0.6 times as fast as the initial horizontal speed. The measurements suggest some slight oscillation in the speed, but higher resolution will be necessary to prove this.
Careful measurements of the image size using the negative image format (sky dark) and adjusting the brightness so that the UFO is just “above” visible, I find that the initial length on this 1.6x blowup is 38 mm. While above the center of the first building it’s length is about 40 mm, suggesting that it got closer. Then, just before disappearing its length is 33 mm long indicating that it moved away.
A study of the image brightness has revealed significant information which is consistent with the above image size measurements. By setting brightness levels appropriately I determined that the image brightness is lowest (greatest contrast against the bright sky) when the UFO is over the first building. The image brightness is slightly higher (slightly less contrast) before the UFO moves behind the first building. Then, of particular significance, is the fact that as it moves toward the second building the contrast decreases (image brightens) continually until it disappears.
The significance of the image brightness changing (image contrast changing) is based on the haze effect or atmospheric “extinction.” The farther an object moves away into a bright sky background with haze, the brighter it appears, eventually at some distance reaching the brightness of the sky background, at which distance it “disappears” because there is no longer any contrast between it and the background. For example, a black sphere that moves away from the observer will grow smaller but it will also increase in brightness. The increase in brightness is a result of light scattered by haze particles or dust or air molecules into the path of the light from the sphere to the observer. In this case we have an object, the UFO, which is not as bright as the sky background. When first seen it has some brightness level and contrast to the sky and a size measurement of about 38 mm. Then a few seconds later it’s brightness is lower (and contrast is greater) and the image size is greater, both of which are consistent with the UFO moving closer to the camera (about 5% closer). Then as it moves to the right the brightness increases as the size decreases (by about 18%) indicating the object started moving away from the camera before it disappeared behind the building. In fact, it appears to have initiated a curved path away from the camera just before it disappeared behind the building. One may imagine that, if this not a VERY clever hoax, the UFO never appeared on the right side of the second building because it had made a “left turn” (but not at East Gate) and disappeared in the distance.
THIS IS A PRELIMINARY ANALYSIS. SOME NUMBERS (maybe all numbers) QUOTED HERE MAY CHANGE AS A RESULT OF INFORMATION OBTAINED IN THE FUTURE.
The only conclusion possible so far is that if this is a hoax…… then we should all turn left and disappear into the haze….. (where is that East Gate when we need it?)
Bruce Maccabee – 11/22/97
MORE MEXICO VIDEO ANALYSIS – PART 3
Thanks to a respondent who made his own measurements of the motion of the UFO I have discovered that my estimates of velocity,acceleration and rotation speed are wrong.
I used a blowup version of the video to make the velocity and acceleration measurements. By comparing the time it takes (number of frames) for the UFO to disappear behind the first building I determined that the blowups had also been slowed down. The correct calculations and comparisons with the original calculations are shown below.
FROM DIRECT VIDEO FROM BLOWUP
frames to go behind
building 20 frames 47 47
time is #frames times 1/30
sec times scale factor
20 x (1/30) = .67 sec 47 x(1/30) x 0.425= 0.67
0.67 sec 0.67
Velocity based on previous calculation using 1.6x
and assuming 25 ft wide UFO 16.9 ft/sec
Corrected velocity (use scale factor) 16.9/.425 = 39.7 ft/sec
The velocity change (zero to 39.7 ft.sec) appears to take place in 1 frame of the direct video. Hence the acceleration is 39.7/(1.30) = 1191 ft/sec^2 which corresponds to 37 g’s ( g = 32 ft/sec^2).
If the acceleration took place in 2 frames the magnitude of the acceleration was 1/2 of this.
THIS NUMBER SUBJECT TO FURTHER MODIFICATION.
Because of the time scale factor change the wobble rate is about twice what was given before and the apparent rotation rate is about twice what was given before.
NEW INFORMATION : I have been informed that the videographer is known, the original video exists, and there are 9 other witnesses. I cannot verify this information, it is what have been told. I was also told that one of the witnesses was at street level on the opposite side of the building where the UFO finally disappeared andthis witness claims that she saw the UFO “disappear.”
If so, this could explain why it was not seen in the video reappearing from behind the building.
Bruce Maccabee – 3/18/98
I previously posted a preliminary analysis of the Mexico City Aug. 6, 1997 sighting/video which will be in the next issue of the MUFON Journal.
I recently received from the MUFON investigator in Mexico City an aerial survey photo which shows the buildings in the pictures. I also got a scaled map.
These have allowed me for the first time to calculate the angular size of the UFO image and to estimate its distance. I find that the UFO was probably a little more than twice the size I used in the posted paper, i.e., 43 ft vs 20 ft. Since all the speeds and accelerations calculated in the article were referenced to the assumed 20 ft size of the UFO, the new data can be incorporated by multiplying all the previous numbers by 43/20 or about 2. Further analysis combined with witness testimony may allow for even more precision in determining the distance of the UFO from the camera.
Bruce Maccabee – 3/20/98
You requested the aerial survey map. It is in black and white and has lots of shadows of the buildings which make it somewhat difficult to interpret, at least the first time you look at it. Anyway, here is a bitmap image.
The scale on the map comes from comparing with an accurate street map.
I discovered while going over this carefully using the video itself for scaling purposes that the field of view across the TV monitor I use is 11 degrees, not 12 degrees as I had reported before. Since th UFO image is almost exactly 1/10 of the field of view, it is abou 1.1 degrees or 19 milliradians (19 ft at 1000 ft).
Again assuming a 600 m distance (actual distance not yet known) the width would be .019 x 600 = 11.4 m = 37 ft, rather than the 42 ft I reported yesterday.
I used a photograph of the TV presentation to do the scaling before rather than the TV monitor itself. I guess the photo was not accurate.
Bruce Maccabee – 7/4/98
Date: Sat, 4 Jul 1998 10:47:24 -0400
From: bruce maccabee <email@example.com>
Subject: UFO UpDate: Re: Lindemann & Rense Tidy Up
To: UFO UpDates – Toronto <firstname.lastname@example.org>
>From: Joe Murgia <Ufojoe1@aol.com>
>Date: Fri, 3 Jul 1998 00:39:52 EDT
>Subject: Re: UFO UpDate: Lindemann & Rense Tidy Up
>>Date: Thu, 02 Jul 1998 23:54:17 -0400
>>From: UFO UpDates – Toronto <email@example.com>
>>Subject: UFO UpDate: Lindemann & Rense Tidy Up
>>It seems that he ran into Jeff Sainio at the MUFON Symposium in
>>Colorado this past weekend. The reclusive Mr Sainio called up the
>>Mexico City footage of the ‘Craft’ going behind a large building,
>>on his computer and told Michael that he was absolutely in no
>>doubt that the footage was a hoax.
>Lindemann also said that Jaime (sp?) Maussan is willing to
>consider this but Maussan can’t get by the credibility of the
>teenage girl Cassandra who claims she saw the craft and her
>Father didn’t believe her and called her a liar. He allegedly
>believed her when J.M. came calling. The Father tells same
>story. Supposedly Cassandra didn’t watch the show where Maussan
>debuted the video. Of course, this is impossible to prove.>
>There were also other witnesses including a young boy. Are they
>all lieing? What a sad world if they are. And what a terrific
>bunch of liars because I saw the interviews and these people
>seemed credible. Some were professional people from the area of
>where the sighting or hoax took place if that’s what
>How reliable is Sainio? Who is he?
>Joe in Tampa
Sainio is one of the best photo/video analysts in the “business.” He began studying the video at my request and the results of our initial joint work on it were published in the MUFON Journal several months ago. He as spent MANY hours on this video, as I can attest, as have I.
Initially it looked very intriguing. But scientists always asks questions of the data (in a manner of speaking) and try to check consistency in all ways.
One of the things to check in in video movie or even a still photo is the comparison between the smearing of images due to camera motion. The UFO image smear should be the same as the background image smear. Careful edge analysis shows that the UFO image is smeared very little or not at all at the same time (in the same frames) where the building image smear is sizeable. In neither case is the smear very great because the camera was evidently operating with a rather fast shutter time (1/250 sec or so). This is why the differential smearing was not noticed in the initial analyses.
Any acceptance of the video as real would have to include a logical explanation for this differential smear (I can’t think of one!). Since the cameraman is still, so far as I know, unknown, the camera, etc. cannot be checked.
The story is that the cameraman would not come forward because he was working illegally in Mexico City and would be sent back to Venezuela (or perhaps arrested and put in jail) if discovered. You should note that sizeable amounts of good old American $$$ were thrown around in order to UPN to buy the rights to use that video in “Danger in Our Skies.” The cameraman could have demanded a pretty penny for convincing proof that his video was real…. I expect he could have made a lot of money and gone back to Venezuela as rich man, had he played his cards right. In other words, if this were a real video it would have been more lucrative for the person to admit to having taken it (thereby getting paid tens of thousands of $$$) than to maintain anonymity and continue working for whatever company in Mexico City. (Unless, of course, he works for “Juan Valdez” and the people who have all those “funny” farms in Columbia.)
Without a “first person account” of the video, the video will always be “wounded.” Inasmuch as internal evidence seems to show signs of fake, at the very least it cannot be accepted as proof of the visual sightings.
How, then, does it related to the visual sightings?
Perhaps the videographer heard about the sighting or was a witness and then took well over a month to construct his depiction of it. And perhaps the witnesses were not all recalling events on the specific date, Aug. 6, which shows on the video.
The bottom line is that we don’ know how to relate the video to the sightings, and we may never know if the videographer doesn’t come forward.
Bruce Maccabee – 7/4/98
Upon careful analysis we [Maccabee and Sanio] have determined that when the background building images are smeared by camera motion the UFO image does NOT appear to be similarly smeared. Very difficult (impossible?) to explain this situation if the UFO were a real object out there. This result has been known to the investgators (myself, Sainio, and Chip Pedersen) for over a month and I mentioned it at the Mid Atlantic MUFON SYmposium in early May. Furthermore, Sainio sent a letter stating his opinion to Walt Andrus about a month ago.
However, we have held off publication pending analysis of a guaranteed fake for comparison. The fake has been created for use in Robert Kiviat’s next TV show (he did the alien autopsy and last summer’s “best video evidence”) in a couple of weeks. (Kiviat would not release to us a copy of the fake video until just before his show airs).
Bruce Maccabee – 7/6/98
…what first caught Sainio’s attention: the rather strong partialy correlation between the “hand vibration” motion of the UFO and the vibration of the buildings frame by frame. Here I am talking about motion from frame ‘to frame rather than relative image smear on a single frame, The camera is always moving around by some amount duie to random hand vibration. The UFO also moves with respect to the building background. Under these conditions one might expect an occaionsal “perfect pan” in which the UFO image seems to stand still in the field of view as the building images move. In this video that sort of thing happens a lot….. and at a high rate (frame by frame). Sainio discovered a considerable correlation between the frame-by-frame motion of the camera itelf (as determined by building image motion) and the motion of the UFO image. He discovered this as he was making a stabilized image video in which the building images stand still. Under these circumstances the UFO and the DATE STAMP on the video (which is at a fixed place in the field of view) both move. Sainio noted a considerable correlation between the vertical motions of the date stamp and of the UFO. There are further details on this that really require a paper…which Sainio might write (he has made his correlation graph available to Walt Andrus and to the Elders). This correlation is a bit “too much” to expect for merely random correlations between the UFO motion generally to the right and the hand motion of the camera. There is on point where one can see this effect by looking hard without sophisticated software analysis. This is as the UFO passes over the second wind sock. The UFO image makes a several frame “jump” up and down… and this is correlated with the date stamp motion, meaning that the camera moved down and up a noticeable amount while the UFO stayed at a single place in the field. Such an effect is consistent with the use of a software program to analyze the background video (which is of a real scene), remove the image motion, calculate locations for the UFO image to generate a uniform UFO motion against the background, and then reintroduce the hand motion. If the program does not do perfect image stabilization the residue of “incomplete stabilization” will show up as a correlation between the motion of the camera (as indicated by the motion of the date stamp as seen against the background) and the motion of the UFO.
Bruce Maccabee – 8/26/98
I must comment on this message since evidence has been in the video which suggests a video hoax. Someof that evidence is directly illustrated in the attached GIF image of four frames from the video. In two of the frames, one above the other, on the right side there are building images which are sharp. In two other frames, left side, the building images are blurred or smeared in the vertical direction by vertical hand motion.
In each of these 4 frames (2 sharp, 2 smeared) there are also images of the UO (unidentified object). [Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for these frames]
I challenge the reader to find any difference in blur between the 4 UFO images in these frames. If the UO were a real object “out there” its edges should be blurred by hand vibration just as the building edges are blurred.
Note: Jeff Sainio has already “gone public” with the claim of hoax based on evidence such as this. It was publicized on CNN News in July and again in the recent MUFON Journal
The reason it took so long to discover these fingerprints of hoax is that they were well “disguised” by the fast shutter (short exposure time) used to make the video.
Bruce Maccabee and Mark Cashman – 9/3/98
>>Date: Tue, 1 Sep 1998 23:21:38 -0400 >>From: Bruce Maccabee <email@example.com> >>Subject: UFO UpDate: Re: Mexico City UFO Footage >>To: UFO UpDates – Toronto <firstname.lastname@example.org>
>>In the two frames of the video >>where the building edges are blurred enough to be visible to the >>naked eye (as seen in a video presentation) a similar amount of >>blurring is not evident at the lower edge (or the upper edge) of >>the UFO image, even though such blurring should be present.
>But if the camera is following the UFO, wouldn’t you expect the >blur amounts of the UFO and the stationary building to differ?>
>I know you’ll have a good answer for this, and I apologize if >you’ve posted one, since I just didn’t spend the time to look >through the previous posts in the thread..
Thanks for giving me the opportunity to clarify this matter These two frames are NOT successive frames. The are about 100 frames apart, as I recall. What is unique about these is that they occur when the camera is goung through a very rapid, short duration upward motion (so that th images move quickly downward). The camera “recovers” imediately. That is the stationary frames are within 2 frames of the smeared ones. Now, you are correct that if the camera were panning with the UFO its edges could be sharp while the building edges are smeared. However, in this case it would require a panning motion that lasts at most 1/15 sec and probably more like 1/30 sec. This would be an ‘accidental pan’ that just happened to be equal to a random camera vibration.
But, if it _were_ an accidental upward motion that just happened to ‘stop’ the UFO image motion, i.e., a momentary pan, then it would mean that the UFO jumped upward some distance (several feet if it were beyond the building) in 1/30 sec and then immediately returned to its initial position (altitude).
I should point out that, although these two frames show the effect the clearest, there is a lesser effect throughout the video. The camera used a fast shutter and this made it difficult to see even smear on the building edges in almost all frames but these two.
There is a more obvious problem when the UFO image passes over the second wind sock. But this only becomes apparent in stabilized versions of the video. You then see that it makes a double bounce lasting a fraction of a second at the very time that the building images undergo a rotation of about 1.5 degrees. This bounce, we believe, is a result of the failure of the hoaxer to take into account the rotation, even though he/she has accounted for the x-y motion of the camera due to hand vibration as he/she placed the UFO image into the video frame according to some planned scheme of travel for the UFO.
Comments From Mark Cashman
The conclusion seems to be that the video is a hoax. After nearly two years, relatively little has surfaced concerning these images. The identity of the videographer remains a mystery. Most of the witnesses claimed to exist remain obscure. Those who control the tape are well known for previous involvement in the Billy Meier hoax. Other than the work of independent analysts doing their best with sketchy information, there has been no publication of research results in any journal. Sadly, it would seem, we are left with difficult and uncertain conclusions.
In any event, this page documents the stages of examination which this material underwent. It is a good representation of the kind of quality research process and the critical examination of premises and results that marks the best of ufology. If nothing else, this shows how science is done with UFO data.
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