Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Those faked Corona spysat images of the Moon

Today I sent this to Richard Hoagland:


In the last month you have posted two images of the Moon that you say were taken by Corona (KH-1 – KH-6) spy satellites looking upward. On 17th February, this one:

…and on 11th March, this one.

The first is dated, presumably in European notation, 30-3-66. Accordingly it could not have been taken by a Corona but more likely by a Gambit (KH-7) satellite, perhaps mission  KH7-26, launch date 18 March 1966, NSSDC designation 1966-022A.

The second is dated 08-01-66, a date on which no Corona or Gambit missions were operative.

Both images show identical damage. Both images show horizontal banding typical of an image transmitted by radio rather than one from a captured film magazine.

In addition, from the known geometry of the Earth-Moon system, the field of view (FOV) may easily be calculated as 0.607°. This is inconsistent with the known FOV of Gambit, 2.18°.

I am led to suspect that your data is fraudulent and I invite you to explain the exact provenance of these images.


Thanks to OneBigMonkey for inspiring this 

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Five Minutes with an Astronomer

        Astronomer Stuart Robbins should be familiar to all regulars here, if only by his nickname "astroguy." He produces the wordpress blog Exposing Pseudoastronomy, whose raison d'être is similar to this one, but with a far more rigorous approach and with more command of online media.

        Robbins has a new project which I'd like to recommend—it's a series of five-minute talks jointly produced with The Reality Check. I've heard the pilot and I think it's very good—a succinct and factual answer to the question "What the heck is Dark Matter?" The talk is unscripted but I thought it was very fluent. I wish I could force Mike Bara to listen to it—he might, thereafter, stop being so scornful about the topic.

        Anyone can "sign up" for this feed. Just send e-mail to the astronomer and be willing to provide some feedback. The part of the e-mail address before the squiggly sign is stuart, and the part after it is sjrdesign followed by a period and the abbreviation for the word commerce.

        As to how often these chats will appear, that's not yet decided. I'm sure Stuart will record a bunch at a time then release them at fairly regular intervals.

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Robert Morningstar's history lesson

James Concannon writes...

        Today on the Book of Farces Robert Morningstar defended Jeff Rense's flagrant anti-semitism, and wrote this:
"A lot of so-called "anti-Semitism" has had a basis in history and just cause behind it."

Sunday, February 18, 2018

So now I'm a clueless troll, huh?

James Concannon writeth...

         Well, ha-ha. It took no great powers of pre-cognition to figure that last night's Other Side of Midnight, featuring frisbee expert Robert Morningstar expounding on technical matters he doesn't understand, would be rubbish. I didn't expect, though, to be personally attacked for having attempted to pre-load Hoagland and Morningstar with the true facts.

        Here's a verbatim excerpt. The topic is the 1960s-era American spysats known as either Corona or Keyhole.
"26:33 When Kennedy revealed what he knew was [on the Moon], which the [NASA] Nazis view as their heritage alone... this is why the Nazis à-la ??? ...Jim Marrs... the Nazis rose up and killed Kennedynote 1 for the reasons that are so blatantly obvious 'cause... Kennedy, as soon as he got confirmation, through Project Corona, which by the way I went back and looked at the timelines--the first successful flight of Corona which was to send a very very large camera like a... like a semi into orbit, looking down photographing all the Soviet Unions's airfields and rocket bases and all that stuff. As soon as the first one was successful, in August of 1960, it turns out over the next 30 launches only about a dozen were deemed acceptable. So what happened to the other 20-some missions? They all got the film back. Was it because, like I discovered on the secret film I was given briefly, from Project Corona and Gambit, every single damn frame had nothing to do with Soviet missile bases on the ground--they were all taken looking up at [Hoagland-style emphatic speech] The Moon! Project Corona, I mean...
RM: One of the sceptics that trolls us...
RCH: I know who you mean..
RM: ..Concannon [or did he say "loose cannon"?], said how is it possible for there to be...and of course...
RCH: Because he doesn't have any idea what he's looking for! Talk about clueless!
RM: You just swi... swivel the camera to point at --uh-- targets. Manoeuvrability--just roll 180° and shoot at the Moon...
RCH: It did! I've had the film in my hands! And I have the scans. So, I mean, in the midst of the incredible cold war which I think was... was a con, it was fake news. The cold war was not real, boys and girls, and nuclear stand-offs... it was a cover. To cover this huge big reality, which is -- the human race figured out, between Roswell and Kennedy, "Oh My God, we're not alone--Oh My God, we have family --Oh My God, our history is nothing like has been portrayed, Oh My God, we're all going to lose our jobs and lose our heads" because the vox populi will be freaked out when they discover everything we've been telling them, for decades, is a lie!
        Hoagland was right about the date of the first success. A mission flown on 10 August 1960 successfully returned a capsule to Earth, but it contained an American flag, not a film magazine. That one was cloaked by NASA as "Discoverer 13." The next flight, on 18 August, returned film.

        What neither of those two nincompoops addressed was the technical question of the field of view, and how much of the image width would have been filled with Moon if anyone had been daft enough to do what Morningstar suggested and swivel the camera to look Moon-wards. The answer, as I wrote on Friday, is 10%. Here's a second look at the geometry, updated from the Friday version:

Like anyone's going to see alien structures on that....

        I've searched without success for a reliable reference to the image that Hoagland said he had in his hands. As I recall, it was something that a supporter slipped him confidentially, that the supporter swore was a detailed image of the Moon taken by a spysat. Can you spell "bamboozled"? Clueless yourself, Hoagland.

        I'm obliged to OneBigMonkey for drawing our attention to the fact that Hoagland presented the following image in the gallery for last night:

        As OBM writes, this is plausible as a spysat view of the Moon, but it's far inferior to the telescope views of the time. I think it confirms that any such material would be useless to anyone searching for alien cities or ruins thereof.

        I also point out that this is from the KH-7 series, codename Gambit, not from the much older and notably less successful Corona (KH-1 through KH-4) series. KH-7 satellites flew 38 missions between July 1963 and June 1967, of which 34 returned film, and of these, 30 returned usable imagery. The date in the mini-window at right is "30-3-66," indicating that this was mission KH7-26, launch date 18 March 1966. Its NSSDC designation was1966-022A, and orbital parameters are listed but nothing else. Of course, by that time Kennedy's address was c/o National Cemetery, Arlington VA, so it wouldn't have been of any great interest to him.

See also Comment #3 from OneBigMonkey

Consider this:
By measurement, the width of that image is 113% of the diameter of the Moon
So width at target = 3474 x 1.13 = 3925 km
FOV = 2 x arc tan 0.0053 = 0.607°

However, we know from the declassified specs that Gambit, at its best, covered a strip 6.3km wide from a 167km orbit.
FOV = 2 x arc tan 3.15/167 = 2.18°

EITHER: The image has been zoomed then re-merged with its time and position data.
OR: It's a complete fake, the lunar image inserted over the original content. The horizontal banding is suspicious—it's more typical of an image transmitted from space rather than one derived from a captured film magazine. I've looked through the Lunar Orbiter image library and can't find an exact match. but there are several very, very similar frames.

Thanks to Stuart "astroguy" Robbins for the audio file.

=======================/ \=============================
[1] In his 2009 book, Hoagland wrote that Kennedy's assassination was most likely contrived by "a military-intelligence cabal." Dark Mission, 2nd edn p.172

Saturday, February 17, 2018

Oberg rebuts Elizondo

“If this was a court of law, we are beyond reasonable doubt.” --Luis Elizondo

        Elizondo is the former Pentagon official who was responsible for the recent (last December) release of gun camera images of UFO-type objects; the fruits of the five-year-long Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program. More deets can be read in an online article by something called "Collective Evolution."

        At the time James Oberg wrote, on this blog, "ufology has sadly disappointed, never becoming a science." Now he reacts to this latest bid to give the fantasy some respectability.

James Oberg writes...
        The 'court of law' analogy is logically fallacious, and its widespread use does not indicate reliable rationality or serious intellectual capabilities on the part of those who use it. All the court of law is concerned with is the cause of a crime whose existence has already been established -- WHO is guilty, not whether or not the crime [or the anomaly] exists. Imagine how strong eyewitness testimony would have to be, against an accused murderer in order for a successful verdict of murder with no victim's body, no missing hypothetical victim, no means, no motive, nothing to connect the accused with the alleged crime.

        Equally fatal to this preposterous legalistic analogy is the onus probandi, the in-going presumption of innocence of the accused in a court of law [in the UFO case the 'accused' is science-as-we-know-it] -- whereas in the UFO debate, it is claimed that the failure to produce a prosaic explanation is by default proof of the guilt of the default assumption of normalcy, which assumes a non-extraordinary event. This is the classic 'argument by elimination' with the unspoken [because it's unprovable] cheater-assumption that a complete list of potential explanations is on hand for testing [with phenomena such as UFOs it never is].

        Reliance on that non-logical thinking about the implications of alleged explanatory elimination leads to the same malodorous result as bovine alimentary elimination.

Friday, February 16, 2018

Stand by for some flagrant errors on Saturday night

James Concannon writes...

        The announced topic for The Other Side of Midnight Sat/Sun 17/18 February is:

"Did President Kennedy's abrupt decision in 1963 -- to end the "Space Race" ... and go to the Moon together with the Russians -- stem directly from the CIA's sudden, top secret, "Project Corona" confirmation, in 1963 ... of ancient ET ruins on the Moon?"

        Broaching this self-evidently ridiculous topic with Richard Hoagland is none other than frisbee expert Robert Morningstar. Morningstar claims to be "a specialist in photo interpretation, geometric analysis and computer imaging."

        Project Corona was a series of reconnaissance satellites targeted at the USSR and China running from June 1959 to May 1972, initiated and managed by the Central Intelligence Agency Directorate of Science & Technology. It is the same surveillance project as the one often referenced as Keyhole, and after a series of embarrassing failures 102 missions returned useful information, the film being dropped out of orbit and captured by USAF aircraft.

        Why do I write "self-evidently ridiculous"? Simply because Corona had nothing to do with the Moon. Writing on Facebook today, Morningstar claimed "I know very well that Corona was a USSR-China spy satellite, but it could be rotated and focused on the Moon, as well." What poppycock! If Morningstar truly was any kind of specialist in geometric analysis he would never dare to make that claim.

Corona camera lens focal length: 610mm
Film frame width: 70mm
Orbital altitude: 160km, later improved to 121km
Distance of the Moon: 370,000km
Diameter of the Moon: 3,474km

From the above data, the field of view was 2 x (arc tan 35/610) = 6.524°
Width of a frame on the Earth surface 2 x (160 tan 3.262°) = 18km, improved to 13.8km

At the distance of the Moon, the image width would have been 42,291km. The entire face of the Moon would therefore have occupied 0.082 of the film width—about like this:

Ancient ET ruins MY ASS.

        I have provided the above information to both Hoagland and Morningstar, but no doubt they will ignore it and treat their audience to three hours of absolute rubbish on Saturday night.

        I've now seen a technical document indicating that the camera optics underscanned, using only 54.5mm of the total film width 70mm. In that case the field of view would have been 5.04°, and the best ground image would have a width of 10.6 km. At lunar distance the image width would be 32,560km and the Moon diameter almost exactly 10%.

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Congratulations, SpaceX

Today's test launch of the Falcon Heavy was absolutely spectacular. Breathtaking. That shot of the two boosters coming back home for a perfect synchronized landing was unforgettable.

This is the future of space exploration.

Monday, February 5, 2018

Hoagland stages a double-header for Superbore weekend

        Since I blogged Richard Hoagland's failures on 22nd January, he's had more luck with the demons of internet radio. Both shows over the 27th/28th weekend completed just fine. The subjects were Antarctica with Robert Morningstar (who has no known expertise on the subject) and Wilbur Allen; and a Space Drive with Mike Gamble.

        Both nights of this last weekend, 3rd/4th February, were billed as featuring Ken Johnston and Steve Troy, discussing what Hoagland has already discussed to death over the years, namely Glass Structures on the Moon, and how NASA suppresses evidence of them. Think about that—that's SIX HOURS on a basically non-existent topic. Are these people mad? (don't answer that.) Ken Johnston almost immediately got off topic by telling his old familiar stories about how he saved a set of 10x8 glossy photoprints from the Apollo program. He even repeated yet again the story of how he saw evidence of an alien base in crater Tsiolkovsky, in 16mm film taken from Apollo 14 as it overflew that huge crater on the back side. He didn't explain how a spacecraft in an orbit inclined 14° can overfly a crater at 20.4°, and Hoagland didn't think to ask.

        Steve Troy may have been more compelling (and more original) but since his audio was incomprehensible it's hard for me to say. Hoagland himself, however, was easily audible and he came armed with a set of 13 images, some of which he says confirm the presence of glass structures. Well, I've seen lots of Hoagland's "evidence" since I've been creating this blog, and none of it is remotely convincing. A couple of the images he presented on Saturday night went beyond merely "unconvincing" into the realm of sheer hilarity. Here's one, in which Hoagland mistakes jpg compression artifacts for his precious alien glass houses:

        It's from Apollo 16, and to get that horrible effect he says he had to "enhance" it. What he actually did was FUBAR it, as we technical chaps say.

        Hoagland-style enhancement was also to blame for the worst case of scanner contamination I've ever seen. This one was an Apollo 11 earthrise shot:

        I wasn't sure whether he thinks the horizontal lines introduced by a cheap scanner are the glass structures, or is it the grubby thumb prints on the scanner glass?

        These horrible exhibits, and others like them, illustrate a Hoagland paradox. He loudly alleges that NASA suppresses evidence of glass thingies, yet his evidence is derived from... NASA.

        In addition to the show's presence (sometimes) on Blog Talk Radio, there is now a podcast stream available to members only. Which is just as well, since on Sunday night the BTR stream crapped out after a few minutes. Hoagland complained that his computer mysteriously switched itself off—cast-iron evidence that some sinister conspiracy is devoted to sabotaging his chat-show. Personally, I'm not too sure about that last part. Once again, FUBAR could just as easily be the problem.

        The podcastery only works while the show is actually "on the air," but for the time being the Saturday show can still be heard at this link.

Update 21 February:
        Here's Bret Sheppard's hand-drawn Apollo 14 ground track, referenced by James Oberg in a comment today. He has the maximum southerly track passing Tsiolkovsky X, at 15.25°S. In reality Apollo 14 could not have gone further South than 14°. The small crater Dobrovolsky R, right by the A of the label "Apollo 14 ground track" is at exactly 14°S.

        The Apollo 14 photographic index map shows that the nearest photo target was near crater Necho P, at 7°S. It's the one only party seen on Sheppard's map to the North.