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Big Black Delta Mystery Solved?

Hemos posted about 12 years ago | from the hindenburg-alecious dept.

Technology 571

jonerik writes "According to this article from, hundreds of sightings of enormous arrowhead-shaped aircraft that have been logged since the 1980s just might have been solved. According to a new report by the National Institute for Discovery Science, the craft (referred to as Big Black Deltas, or BBDs) are massive black airships on the order of 600 feet long, 300 feet wide, and 40 feet tall, weighing on the order of 100 tons and capable of carrying huge loads over long distances. Since a 2001 NIDS study correlated sightings of large triangular or delta-shaped objects with Air Force Materiel Command and Air Mobility Command bases throughout the United States, it's assumed that the BBDs are DoD transport airships. Dr. L. Scott Miller, professor of Aerospace Engineering at Wichita State University, agrees with much of the NIDS report. 'I do think that a large airship, with a heavy lift and other mission objectives, has been built,' says Dr. Miller. 'Lockheed has shown a great deal of interest in airships for many years. The real question is whether the Department of Defense has committed to buy and use such machines.'"

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Fist Sport (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4014848)

What about the Big Red Anus [] mystery?

i claim this for uiuc.test (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4014850)

i claim this for uiuc.test

Re:i claim this for uiuc.test (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4014961)

i claim this for uiuc.test

It's too small. uiuc.test throws it back.


Re:i claim this for uiuc.test (0, Offtopic)

JeffMagnus (133746) | about 12 years ago | (#4015022)

I'm sorry, Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that.

Yeah (-1)

l33t j03 (222209) | about 12 years ago | (#4014856)

Big black delta....thats what you goo gobblers were thinking about....deltas.


Why would they classify airships? (1)

Fenresulven (516459) | about 12 years ago | (#4014857)

Why would the DoD classify information on some large airships to such a great extent?

It's like the square root of a million.... (2, Funny)

gfxguy (98788) | about 12 years ago | (#4014867)

No one will ever know. (Nelson from the Simpsons)

You know what is really interesting is (2, Interesting)

xevioso (598654) | about 12 years ago | (#4015032)

Reading this article in light of the book review at today, about supposedly hidden anti-gravity technology the US took from the Nazis after WWII. gravity/index.html They don't give the book a lot of credence, but the fact that it was written by an editor at Jane's Defense makes it a little more plausible. The author says that some of that technology, if it exists, is actually being used in the B-2 bombers. It would, don't chya think, make sense to put two and two together and come up with a big-ass blimp that is powered by some obscure technology to keep it afloat. Makes sense to me.

Re:Why would they classify airships? (2)

delta407 (518868) | about 12 years ago | (#4014880)

Why would the DoD classify information on some large airships to such a great extent?
Why would the DoD give the enemy information on some large airships?

Besides, then you can get said enemy all scared about aliens and stuff. That's always good.

Re:Why would they classify airships? (2)

CTalkobt (81900) | about 12 years ago | (#4014899)


All of the "wars" that America has handled for the past little bit has been through a build-up phase on orders of months or so. If there is a super-quick way to move men/materials/totally cool *hit in then the enemy will be in a relaxed posture.

You can't plan for what you don't know.

Re:Why would they classify airships? (3, Insightful)

captain_craptacular (580116) | about 12 years ago | (#4014918)

All of the "wars" america has handled in the last little bit were total one sided slaughters. It's not like if Iraq of Afganistan had an extra 2 weeks to prepare they would have "won"...

Re:Why would they classify airships? (1)

CTalkobt (81900) | about 12 years ago | (#4014958)

Actually the reason we waited so long before attacking Iraq I really believe was because Iraq could not maintain distance supply lines for too long.

Lack of supplies means lack of moral.

Lack of moral means pigeon shooting when it comes time.

And the best thing is... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4014975)

Dead Muslims by the hundreds. That's why the US of A is the BEST motherfucking country in the world!

Re:And the best thing is... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4015034)

Fuckin' A.

And here's hoping there's going to be a fuck-load MORE dead towel-heads before we're ready to forget about WTC and the Pentagon.

Re: Why would they classify airships? (1)

Black Parrot (19622) | about 12 years ago | (#4015059)

> All of the "wars" america has handled in the last little bit were total one sided slaughters. It's not like if Iraq of Afganistan had an extra 2 weeks to prepare they would have "won"...

To attempt a thread-relevant spin on that, the USA was woefully short of ground troops in the arena when the Taliban unexpectedly collapsed. (Most of the slaughter was done by native factions.)

Re:Why would they classify airships? (1)

timeOday (582209) | about 12 years ago | (#4015069)

Are you sure?

Somalia "won," did it not?

I think surprise could be very important to the outcome in the (probably) upcoming war against Iraq. Support is already weak, and any significant casualties just might tip the scales.

Re:Why would they classify airships? (2, Funny)

sirsex (550329) | about 12 years ago | (#4014948)

I don't think these modern wars can get much shorter. The Gulf War was over before my popcorn got cold.

Re:Why would they classify airships? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4015058)

There was more to it then 100 hours of ground war, just ask anyone in the USAF.

Re:Why would they classify airships? (0)

the way, what're you (591901) | about 12 years ago | (#4014939)

To prevent terrorists from knowing the methods used to shuttle CowboyNeal around. :)

Re:Why would they classify airships? (1)

Mr. Sketch (111112) | about 12 years ago | (#4014951)

Probably because the materials and technology used to make the ship were obtained from the alien craft that crashed in Roswell.

Re:Why would they classify airships? (1)

elixx (242653) | about 12 years ago | (#4014992)

The scary thing is, that such a conclusion might be so.
If maglev and anti-grav are "just reaching" later stages of development, then something is truely amiss.

Frightening, no? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4014858)

I worry about what toys might be hidden in the closet. Hell, even the stealth bomber, as infamous as it is, may employ secret technology (Brownsend effect propulsion), according to Jane's.

Re:Frightening, no? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4014954)

That's not "according to Jane's", it's according to a book by a former Jane's aviation editor. Despite his credentials, it doesn't look like he did his homework on this one. I haven't read the book myself, but I have read the Salon review [] , which damns the book pretty thoroughly. The book sounds like it's based more on bogus physics and conspiracy-theory thinking than on proper investigation.

Re:Frightening, no? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4014980)

Really? Thanks for the heads-up.

how about.... (3, Funny)

jormurgandr (128408) | about 12 years ago | (#4014860)

Bill Gates' personal "transport". After all, the best way to hide money from the government is to spend it, right?

Mystery Solved? (5, Funny)

sllort (442574) | about 12 years ago | (#4014863)

That's awesome that they've proved these massive airplanes have been kept secret from us for so long. When can I fly on one? Can someone mirror the pictures of them on the runway? Maybe some Slashdotters can go to the airbase where they're based and get some snapshots of the crew!
I'm so glad we have proof now!

Re:Mystery Solved? (2, Funny)

anotherone (132088) | about 12 years ago | (#4014919)

Slashbots? Go outside? Not bloody likely.

Re:Mystery Solved? (4, Funny)

cpeterso (19082) | about 12 years ago | (#4014945)

Did you even read the article? They had a photograph [] of one such "BBD".

Re:Mystery Solved? (2, Funny)

JoeBlows (581471) | about 12 years ago | (#4015009)

umm...that is a computer image.

Re:Mystery Solved? (2)

MisterBlister (539957) | about 12 years ago | (#4015014)

Did you even read the article? They had a photograph [] of one such "BBD".

That's a great photograph!! I wonder who the photographer was..He must be one tall fellow!!

Re:Mystery Solved? (2, Redundant)

_ph1ux_ (216706) | about 12 years ago | (#4015024)

uh - can you say "artists rendition"

Re:Mystery Solved? (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4015029)

Photograph? ROFLMAO. Artists concept but certainly not a photograph.

Re:Mystery Solved? (0)

the way, what're you (591901) | about 12 years ago | (#4015063)

I'm upgrading my video card. Can I interest you in my ATI Radeon 8500 MAXX [] ?

The Art Bell Show is giving away tickets (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4014957)

NIDS is a frequent guest on Art Bell. The Contrails from these massive planes are causing Global Warming, and will trigger the coming Global Superstorm. Whitley Strieber can verify this.

Art is the same guy that hyped Y2K, sells gold coins, and is a leading authority on crop circles.

Who was the moron that posted this? Gawd, are you stooooooopid. Who's your technical advisor, Sasquatch?

Re:Mystery Solved? (0, Redundant)

moose_hp (179683) | about 12 years ago | (#4015074)

When can I fly on one?

When can I fly it on MS Fligth Simulator?

Big and Black (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4014864)

I've got something that's big and black. But its no mystery.

Come and get it, pretty little linux hippies.

All your Big Black Deltas (1, Offtopic)

GregAllen (178208) | about 12 years ago | (#4014869)

are belong to us.

Secret purposes (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4014883)

These secret planes are used to transport my oversized testicles. They have to fly at high altitude or the resulting fumes from the sweat of my behemoth-like scrotum would kill crops for miles around.

Sure... Aliens aren't visiting us (3, Funny)

ObviousGuy (578567) | about 12 years ago | (#4014891)

These airships have the ability to remain stationary in the air and then accelerate to maximum speed almost instantaneously.


Re:Sure... Aliens aren't visiting us (0)

TarrVetus (597895) | about 12 years ago | (#4014979)

From what I remember about the BBD sightings is that it would never really accelerate to phenomenally high speeds, but would instead accelerate to about the speed of a plane and fly off into the country. The craft often dodged and weaved in and out of communities, but would eventually be lost in the wilderness. Reports never definately stated they headed into space, but instead just flew away.

Of course, that is just my memory.

Re:Sure... Aliens aren't visiting us (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4014988)

ooh, a *REDUNDANT* post! Sure wish someone would mod this guy down as was done to me.

It's a trick!! (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4014893)

They're just trying to get you to take your tinfoil hat off! Don't do it!

Why be so secretive? (5, Insightful)

yali (209015) | about 12 years ago | (#4014895)

Among a range of NIDS observations, the group believes the BBDs are powered by electrokinetic/field drives, or airborne nuclear power units.

Oh, that's why. The DoD probably doesn't want to deal with the fallout (ha ha) from announcing to the public that they're putting nuclear material in airborne vessels.

Re:Why be so secretive? (2, Interesting)

Ksop (132400) | about 12 years ago | (#4015028)

maybe something like...this [] ???

Lockheed (0, Redundant)

jethro200 (573288) | about 12 years ago | (#4014897)

'Lockheed has shown a great deal of interest in airships for many years.
Really? I never would have guessed...

Well... (2)

Auckerman (223266) | about 12 years ago | (#4014904)

It doesn't take a brainiac to figure this one out. It is well known that the US and Soviets help promote Space Ship theories to cover up their research projects. This goes right up that alley. Make an airship that looks pointless, fly it at night and near places where you known only small towns will see it and poof its from SPACE. That way next time you fly that space plane into orbit and it's seen, people will first think Aliens before they think home grown.

OH! (0)

The_Rippa (181699) | about 12 years ago | (#4014906)

Now it's all becoming clear, it wasn't a alien ship that abducted and probed me, it was a MILITARY ship.

Fancy that... (2, Insightful)

boowax (229348) | about 12 years ago | (#4014910)

And here I spent so many years believing they were weather balloons!

Ummmm. . . never mind. (1, Offtopic)

noewun (591275) | about 12 years ago | (#4014922)

Nothing I could say is sillier than the article.

Help (5, Funny)

CableModemSniper (556285) | about 12 years ago | (#4014925)

I can't seem to find the "-1: Crackpot" mod.

Electrokinetic Drive? (2)

Wise Dragon (71071) | about 12 years ago | (#4014926)

"Elecrokinetic propulsion means that no propellers or jets are used."

Someone want to explain that one?

Re:Electrokinetic Drive? (5, Funny)

Bearpaw (13080) | about 12 years ago | (#4014942)

"Elecrokinetic propulsion means that no propellers or jets are used."

Someone want to explain that one?

It's a form of buzzword propulsion.

Re: Electrokinetic Drive? (1)

Black Parrot (19622) | about 12 years ago | (#4015031)

> It's a form of buzzword propulsion.

Yeah, here's a bench across the back where IT marketeers sit. The Air Force lures them on with the offer of a free ride in a high-tech airship, and then exploits them for the free propulsion.

Re:Electrokinetic Drive? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4014952)

Re:Electrokinetic Drive? (3, Funny)

Maniakes (216039) | about 12 years ago | (#4014967)

Airships are big balloons. We've all rubbed balloons against our shirts, then stuck them to the wall. This is an "electrostatic" effect. If you rub an airship against a big enough shirt, it will accellerate towards the nearest large wall. The clever bit is that you pile a bunch of drywall slabs on the back of a truck, then drive the truck around while the airship follows. Since the wall is moving, the effect is "electrokinetic".

I'm waiting for a report that the development of the large shirts in the 1950s was partially responsible for the Paul Bunyan legend.

Re:Electrokinetic Drive? (3, Funny)

cpeterso (19082) | about 12 years ago | (#4014970)

Elecrokinetic propulsion means that no propellers or jets are used.

I think that means they are using telekinesis. That would explain why the CIA is harboring so many al Quaeda members in psionic prisons in Cuba. Islamic people are well known to have strong psychic powers. There brand of Evil is strong.

Re:Electrokinetic Drive? (2, Funny)

the way, what're you (591901) | about 12 years ago | (#4014971)

"Elecrokinetic propulsion means that no propellers or jets are used."

Simple - if it does not use propellers or jets, then according to the quote, it must be using electrokinetic propulsion. Examples of this include paper airplanes, baseballs and automobiles. :)

Re:Electrokinetic Drive? (1)

Taldo (583925) | about 12 years ago | (#4015055)

Either that or they're generating a substantial electrostatic charge to create a repulsive force against whatever charge happens to be in the area. Remember that at higher altitudes static charge DOES become an issue. Clouds have them, for example... and considering the current found in a lightning strike... it can be considerable. Is it efficient? Who knows... static isn't all that hard to generate.

Re:Electrokinetic Drive? (2, Funny)

dark&stormynight (69479) | about 12 years ago | (#4015061)

Actually, they're using multiple Vectored Cow Flatulence Propulsion Modules. They have cows suspended in frames that squeeze the cows in the right places producing hugh amounts of thrust. If you've read this far...then it must be true.

Bullshit. I saw one. (5, Interesting)

revscat (35618) | about 12 years ago | (#4014937)

I was going to post this anonymously, but then decided it would just lessen my credibility.

I saw one of these in (of all places) Denton, Texas in 1992. I was going to the University of North Texas, and was hanging out at this friend of mine's house. We had stayed up all night talking politics and philosophy, and had gone out onto the balcony so I could smoke.

Her apartment was on the second floor, facing the pool, behind which was another two-storey apartment building. We hadn't been out there long when I noticed something moving just above the building opposite us. It was triangular in shape, with lights at each of the points. In appearance it was dark grey, and the lights at the points were just a tad brighter than the stars around the thing. It's orientation was almost completely vertical: imagine holding up a mostly-equilateral triangle in front of you and moving it from left to right, with the point facing right. It was moving very slowly, I would estimate at around 20 or 30 MPH.

I shouted out "Hey, what's that?" It took a short while for her to see it, but eventually she did. We watched it for a minute, chattering excitedly, before it slowly turned away from us and disappeared off to the west.

It didn't make a sound, and it was very big. It was unidentified, it was flying, and it was an object. Beyond that I make no claims. But if the DoD can build something like that, then I'm damned impressed.

No, I'm not bullshitting in some weak attempt to get karma. This really did happen to me.

Re:Bullshit. I saw one. (1)

PaganRitual (551879) | about 12 years ago | (#4014978)

and had gone out onto the balcony so I could smoke.

... smoke what, exactly???

(sorry, i find this all incredibly interesting, i just couldnt pass up the opportunity to make a lame, incredibly obvious joke ...)

Re:Bullshit. I saw one. (0)

the way, what're you (591901) | about 12 years ago | (#4014987)

...and had gone out onto the balcony so I could smoke.

You don't name the substance that was smoked, could you please clarify? ;)

Re:Bullshit. I saw one. (2)

LMCBoy (185365) | about 12 years ago | (#4014993)

Interesting account, thanks for posting it. But I don't understand why you discount the possibility that it was one of these secret DoD blimps?

What specifically about the thing that you saw is inconsistent with one of these things?

Re:Bullshit. I saw one. (4, Interesting)

revscat (35618) | about 12 years ago | (#4015039)

What specifically about the thing that you saw is inconsistent with one of these things?

Mainly its orientation. It was flying on its side, not flat. Again, imagine taking a cardboard triangle and holding it up in front of you, with the point facing to the right. Now slowly turn the point of the cardboard triangle away from you: the triangle gets smaller, then flat. When it turned away from us, it was thin like the cardboard would be, but still vertical. Am I making any kind of sense? I don't feel like I'm describing this very well.

Plus it was very angular. I would expect a blimp to be more rounded.

Re:Bullshit. I saw one. (2)

MisterBlister (539957) | about 12 years ago | (#4015002)

So, what's your title about then ('Bullshit')? What you described sounds pretty much exactly what they described in the article. Do you have reason to believe it wasn't a military craft, or?

Re:Bullshit. I saw one. (5, Interesting)

david.given (6740) | about 12 years ago | (#4015018)

It was probably a jet.

The eyes can play very funny tricks on you. I live under the flight path for Heathrow, and at night you see these huge diamond-shaped aircraft flying over. I look at one, I know it's a jet, I tell myself it's a jet, but I can clearly see the lines connecting the nose and tail with the wing tips, and the body is easily visible.

The brain's got this amazing pattern-recognition system as part of the visual processing. Unfortunately, when it doesn't know what something is, it tends to guess, and one of the algorithms it uses is to connect points with lines... and to fill in shapes... and the four beacons on the nose, wingtips and tail of a 747, seen at night, is perfect material for this.

Of course, I don't know exactly what you saw, I wasn't there. But I strongly suspect what it was was a jet, a lot further away than it looked, banking away from you (so making the tail beacon invisible). You didn't make any sound because passenger jets are pretty quiet and it was a long way away, and any noise that reached you was drowned in the traffic noise.


Re:Bullshit. I saw one. (1)

ObviousGuy (578567) | about 12 years ago | (#4015037)

IOW, Nothing to see here. Move along now.

Ding ding ding! Mod up pls. (1)

alienmole (15522) | about 12 years ago | (#4015050)


Re:Bullshit. I saw one. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4015068)

What you saw was the planet Venus. No other object as been misidentified as a flying saucer more often than the planet Venus.

Jesse V.

Re:Bullshit. I saw one. (1)

fym (409721) | about 12 years ago | (#4015027)

the only question is... what did you smoke out on the balcony? ;D

Re:Bullshit. I saw one. (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4015060)

Sorry I have to reply anonymously, but I'm not registered.

I'm not questioning your story, but whatever you saw, it doesn't look like it was trying to keep itself secret, since from your description it had some sort of running lights. The "black" aircraft hypothesized in the article would presumably try to keep itself as invisible as possible.

Re:Bullshit. I saw one. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4015067)

yeah right..up all night talking politics..sure and after a satifying bout, you needed to grab a smoke.

Re:Bullshit. I saw one. (5, Funny)

Peridriga (308995) | about 12 years ago | (#4015070)

Thank you for posting...

An appointment has been made for a visit by many men in dark suits and black sunglasses to visit you and 'explain' to you what you 'really saw'.

Please contact to schedule a time that is acceptable for you. We will most likely disregard you request and just shove you into a black van during the day.

Once again, thank you for your coperation on this matter.

The Management,
-- Employee #82108302

Airship (5, Funny)

papasui (567265) | about 12 years ago | (#4014940)

Great you got an airship now all you need is a guy named Cid to fly it and some dudes with swords.

Re:Airship (2)

unicron (20286) | about 12 years ago | (#4015020)

I'd rather have Setzer behind the wheel, but that's just me.

This is ridiculous. (5, Insightful)

Debillitatus (532722) | about 12 years ago | (#4014941)

The editors came up real short on this one. After reading the /. blurb, it sounded like an actual piece of journalism that was reporting on this. Ok, fine.

Then I went to the website that this came from. Let me give those of you who bought this a clue: Any website which has "Consciousness Studies" on the front page is not anything close to reputable when it comes to speculating about objects flying in the air.

Perhaps I'm being a bit thick-headed and missed the sarcasm, but it sure seemed like this was honestly submitted, and this is nothing but a load of crap.

Re:This is ridiculous. (1)

Hans Lehmann (571625) | about 12 years ago | (#4014983)

Their web site also has a bunch of reports about cattle mutilations, complete with pretty questionable eyewitness reports. This alone puts them well into the Kook zone.

Hey man, don't bogart the consciousness (5, Funny)

xant (99438) | about 12 years ago | (#4015004)

Consciousness studies are usually conducted with what I would term "consciouness aids". In the Timothy Leary sense. This could explain almost everything else this website reports on.

Re:This is ridiculous. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4015033)

Yeah, let's not forget that consciousness has *nothing* to do with reality. "Consciousness Studies"... hah! Who'd want to study *that* anyway!

art bell (1)

slash_quark (577285) | about 12 years ago | (#4015052)

The deputy administrator of NIDs is a regular interviewee on the art bell show/circus. You be the judge... :)

Okay... but why are they here? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4014943)

Okay, lets assume that they do in fact exist. We have massive heavy lifting airships, but why do they have them? A convoy of Army personnel and tanks going through a town raises eyebrows, but it isn't mindbogglingly out of the ordinary. Okay, so we have large airships that are kept secret to haul 'stuff'. Obviously they don't want you to see this 'stuff' because they don't transfer it by conventional means, so it's probably a secret. Large, stealthy airships carrying 'secret stuff', you could justify a couple of them by finding downed 'secret airplanes' or stuff that shouldn't be known to the public. Okay, maybe they're building secret bunkers somewheres, transferring nuclear missiles, but this sort of stuff can be explained away by a old guy with a bunch of medals. Perhaps it gives credence to all those UFO nuts out there, thats certainly something you wouldn't want people to know about.

What about the radar return? (5, Interesting)

sphealey (2855) | about 12 years ago | (#4014944)

In Skunk Works, Ben Rich mentioned that air traffic controllers were briefed and sworn to secrecy while the SR-71 was being developed and before it was announced to the public. So I guess it might be possible to keep the radar return of something like this secret.

But I did get an ad in the mail just the other day for my very own phased-array NEXRAD weather radar, quite suitable for rooftop mounting (well, an office building roof anyway). With stuff like that available to the public I think it would hard to keep something this big secret for long.


Re:What about the radar return? (2)

MisterBlister (539957) | about 12 years ago | (#4015047)

I believe the general thinking is this thing has some heavy duty stealth features. Radar absorbance, etc. Also its slow movement speed makes it hard to pick up as a moving object with most radar systems. Of course, I understand that for it to be as stealth as I'm making it out to be, it would have to be a bit beyond our current understand from the stealth fighter/bomber, but it doesn't seem that far out.

I've solved it.... (5, Funny)

T3kno (51315) | about 12 years ago | (#4014946)

NIDS invented NADS the Australian hair removal system. The flying wedge is the transport system that will be used to systematically drop free samples of Nads over Europe, the Middle East, and Russia where excessive hairyness is a problem.

Re:I've solved it.... (1)

SteveAstro (209000) | about 12 years ago | (#4014999)

Of course this will lead to the ad slogan GO NADS...


Sadly... (4, Funny)

NanoGator (522640) | about 12 years ago | (#4014962)

... the key witnesses to one of the sightings, Vicks and Wedge, were killed before they could take the stand.

just cause their silent ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4014964)

Just because they are silent, doesn't mean that they are using some exotic propulsion system. It is a bit irresponsible to jump to the conclusion that they are using an "electrostatic" drive. Keeping such a device secret would be a disservice to humanity which is unforgivable even in the interest of national security and I doubt any real american would do such a thing. Much more likely these things use very quiet conventional propulsion.

Keeping an electrostatic drive secret from the rest of us would be like a caveman keeping his fire and wheels in his cave while everyone else was freezing and getting sore feet.

Heavy Lifting? (1)

radpole (39181) | about 12 years ago | (#4014990)

I was just watching a special recently on maybe the Discovery. They showed a very deadly crash of a heavy lifting vehicle that was using four old helicopters mixed with a blimp. As I remember it killed and injured several people. The program called heavy lifting vehicle technology dead. I do believe that it was a private company building it though.

Personally I think they are Anti-grav vehicles built using Roswell technology. Naaaaaaa....

decimation of the maritime force (0)

joshuarat (593508) | about 12 years ago | (#4014991)

Once upon a time, the US government (right or wrong, ya still gotta laugh at them)had a policy of our armed forces being able to fight "2 1/2" wars. That meant 2 MAJOR wars (Vietnam scale (I know...police action)) and one minor "brush fire" anywhere in the world.
Times being what times have been (I thnk it's wearing rosed colored glasses and ignoring common sense, but feel free to disagree :)) the military has been cut to bare bones not seen since the creation of the US (if you factor in "arms inflation")
One of the sectors worst hit is the maritime force, the ships used to get our troops (but more importantly in the jet age) our equipment to where they are needed. Lets face it, two tanks at a time(?) on a c-130 (or what have you) just does not cut it. Why did Operation desert storm take so long to get started? Simply, we had no way to even hold the existing lines. If Saddam had not been a piss-poor tactician/stratigest he could have, at the very least dug in and deployed his forces on his "new borders" in such a way that we would have never been able to budge them. But, he waffled around for the 3 MONTHS it took for us to get the necessary equipment there, by ship..after ship...after ship...taking at least a week (?) one way...Now, what if you could airlift 100 or more tanks, with their crews, and ammo/fuel for a week, and get them on site in 2 days? (shear guess there...100 knots? more? less?) Ten lousy airships = 1000 tanks on site in 2 days? Makes it much easier to put out a brush fire...and lets face it...we can just barely handle 1 major conflict right now...

Guess work?!?! (1)

The Outbreak Monkey (581200) | about 12 years ago | (#4014997)

"We want to limit the number of cases that are unidentified in our data base. The more that are identified, obviously the less we have to work on. That's our prime motivation& to eliminate the wheat from the chaff," Kelleher told

NIDS has amassed some 1,000 cases that are under review. Of those, about 200 are Big Black Delta sightings. In the last year or two, BBD reports have been on the rise.

Interesting! They are literally guessing 200 cases right off of their desk! Time to take the week off! 20% of the workload gone!
Sounds like a coder: "I can't figure it out...(looking at clock, 5:00pm on Friday) must be a hardware on my machine! C ya!"

Nonsense, they're really... (5, Funny)

dpilot (134227) | about 12 years ago | (#4015003)

Vogan survey ships, measuring and laying out the interstellar bypass. Sometime in the next decade the Constructor ships will arrive.

Support your local poet.

Leviathan! (2)

Kozz (7764) | about 12 years ago | (#4015012)

Wait. Those aren't airships [] , they're Leviathans! []

Well... (-1)

j0nkatz (315168) | about 12 years ago | (#4015015)

I saw these aliens the other night.
I was sitting on my back porch sipping on my pint of Everclear and thinking about things. The ship landed and Elvis came out and sang a couple of songs, it was k-rad!

Does not compute. (4, Interesting)

AJWM (19027) | about 12 years ago | (#4015016)

Okay, some quick calculations, based on the estimated volume and mass, gives me a net payload of way less than 100 tons. (More like about 40 tons unless I messed up the math. - Figure a volume of about 36 million cu ft, the density is about 25 grams/cu ft, for a net lift of 10 gms/cu ft (air weighing about 35 gm/cu ft), or 36 metric tons.

A 747-400 has a payload of over 120 tons with a range of over 4400 nautical miles. Why not just use 747s? (Although, if this airship has the advantages of stealth and being able to "land" just about anywhere, there might be some point.)

Somehow I don't buy it.

BBD sightings? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4015036)

Who cares if you've just seen Bell Biv DeVoe?

They're out there, waiting and invisible (5, Funny)

patiwat (126496) | about 12 years ago | (#4015053)

The airships don't come and go - they're out there constantly. They're just invisible, both to optical and radar wavelengths. The ships are actually filled with tall, thin, vicious aliens who want to exploit earth's natural resources and kidnap earth's children.

The reason they haven't landed yet is because they find earth's atmosphere poisinous. The high humidity burns their skin the way hydrochloric acid burns human skin. They haven't developed the appropriate environmental suits yet because (despite being able to traval intersteller distances) they're not that smart, and don't know, for instance, how to turn door knobs. They're also confused about where to land, since all of their original crop sign navigation markers were soon replaced by the work of Disney executives and 30 year-old nerds who don't have girlfriends.

Patiwat Panurach

Big Black Delta Mystery Solved? (3, Funny)

Anonvmous Coward (589068) | about 12 years ago | (#4015064)

"Big Black Delta Mystery Solved?"

One really shouldn't use the words 'Big' and 'Delta' in the same headline unless it is about Delta Burke. I had to read a little ways in before I realized I had the wrong image in my mind.

Wasn't NASA releasing concept art (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4015065)

...for some extremely arrowhead-ish shaped spacecraft awhile back? It was supposed to be part of their design for the post-shuttle spacecraft. I think this was in Popular Mechanics (or maybe Discover, the two blur together in my mind) some time before the Pathfinder mission. It was called the X10, or something. Then NASA got its budget eviscerated and that project was dropped.

If what this article says is true, then this would bring an interesting hypothetical angle to that: namely, that the arrowhead-y aircraft were in some way using a body design or other technology that was to be recommissioned from existing military hardware (i.e., these big black ships).

Then again it's probably just a coincidence.. anyone remember this thing i'm talking about?

-- super ugly ultraman

Thank you, Mr. Shyamalan. (1)

Kaz Riprock (590115) | about 12 years ago | (#4015066)

When these things hover, do they go invisible and have birds bounce off of them. Do blue guys with poison gas come out and terrorize Mel Gibson?

Geezus, next week there's going to be an article about super-spies being developed from our children [] and our convicts [] .

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