Bill Chalker's pioneering work in the 1980's examining RAAF and Department of Civil Aviation files on the UFO subject has now been comprehensively expanded upon by the Disclosure Australia Project.
The Project started off in July 2003 and as the first part of its mission plan, has been examining Australian Government files on the subject of UFOs. The Project is nearing the end of looking at files which are within easy public reach. Locating other harder to find files is still continuing.
The Project has located and examined files about UFOs or UFO organisations belonging to:
The former Department of Supply
- The former Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) and the current Department of Transport & Regional Services (DOTRS)
- The former Department of Territories
- The former Department of External Affairs
- The Attorney General's Department - ASIO
- The current Commonwealth Scientific & Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO)
- The Current Department of Defence (DOD)
- - Australian Army
- Royal Australian Navy
- Royal Australian Air Force
- and former areas such as the Department of Air (DOA) (1939-1973.)
It has also gained insight into people who worked for the Government in the CSIRO and the former DOD Joint Intelligence Bureau (JIB), and who looked into the UFO phenomenon as individuals.
The main questions which arise after examination of several thousand Government UFO documents are:
- "What did these Government Departments do with the material they gathered, and why?"
- "Did any Government Agency conduct scientific research into the subject?"
Former Department of Supply 1952-1972
Incidents at Woomera, particularly in the early 1950's, feature almost exclusively in the three files located. Indeed, the security people at the range seemed to have thoroughly documented the sightings reported there, whether the cause was mundane or possibly of more exotic origin. However, almost no analysis of the data is seen on these files. Seemingly, the Department saw its role as collecting and forwarding sightings to their Head Office and the DOA. Indeed, it is only in 1971 that there was a hint on a RAAF file that the Department itself might be interested in looking into the subject of UFOs.
The former Department of Civil Aviation 1952-1973 and the current Department of Transport and Regional Services 1973-2005
In the early 1950's the DCA was one of the two lead agencies involved in collecting reports of "flying saucers" (the other being the DOA.) It initially actively sought reports; considered setting up its own study section and then liaised with the DOA by forwarding raw reports. For 20 years it collected reports and passed them to the DOA. Its replacement agency, the DOTRS, following a Freedom of Information (FOI) request from us, advised that its aviation occurrence data base OASIS contained a small number of reports involving the acronym "UFO". Brief details of these were released to us.
The former Department of Territories 1959-1965
This agency, which administered Papua New Guinea (PNG) at one stage, referred raw reports from PNG to the DOD between 1959 and 1965, without any attempt at analysis.
The former Department of External Affairs 1954
The Federal Minister for this Department, the Rt Hon R G Casey, took a personal interest in the subject in 1954 according to the single Departmental file located. Casey corresponded with various Australian Embassies collecting information on the topic. He also engaged in correspondence with CSIRO staff.
Australian Security Intelligence Organisation 1956-1972
Two files have emerged from ASIO and the former Commonwealth Investigation Section (CIS), on the Queensland Flying Saucer Bureau and the Australian Flying Saucer Research Society respectively. The interest of ASIO/CIS appears in line with their charter.
The Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation 1952-1989
Two files were located covering the period 1952 to 1989, utilising both the Archive and Freedom of Information Acts. On a number of occasions the Organisation advised enquirers that it did not carry out field work in this subject. However, a small number of its staff did undertake investigations into reports as individuals, particularly one Dr Michael Duggin. The organisation's files reveal it mainly directly answered public queries. Like other Government agencies it positively responded to the 1966 request from the DOA to co-operate with the RAAF by examining any raw reports forwarded to it by DOA. In reality very few reports were ever forwarded, according to the files we examined.
The Department of Defence 1951-2005
Royal Australian Navy
Four Navy files have been located, of which two of these dealt with the 1954 Nowra Navy pilot incident. Of the other two, file series E499/18 control symbol C21/4/41 was located at the Darwin office of the National Australia Archives. Titled "Unidentified flying object sightings." The file was from Defence Establishment Berrimah (Formerly HMAS Coonawarra) and consisted of 41 pages. Its date range was 1959-1974 and although no analysis was present on the file, someone, for some reason was keeping a file on the subject. The final file which has not yet been opened for us is titled "Earth satellites, space vehicles, Unidentified Flying Objects-general."
Four Army files were also located. MP742/1 control symbol 177/1/2356 titled: "Flying saucers re O L Alwin" contained a letter from Mrs O L Alwin of North Manly to "Army inventions etc(?)" dated 4 Jan 1951 "...in view of war situation must let you know what I saw in that Russians folder...saucer like interior...fuel used was, then "unknown", substance U-235..." File AWM 288 control symbol R723/1/1 titled "Reports-General-Flying Objects" located in the Australian War Memorial contained a Memo dated 23 May 1966 from Brigadier Commander HQ Puckapunyal Area to S Comd. Reference S Comd 109-S1-3 dated 17 May 66. It said that enquiries have failed to locate any info on the reporting of a UFO. PP580/1 R372/1/2 titled Fire Services-general UFO [WRAAC-14th Women's Royal Australian Army Corps] consisted of a log book and four sealed folios. One file not yet opened is titled "Request for information flying objects Raoul & Bandish" with a date range of 1957-58.
It appears, that contrary to views expressed from time to time, in some quarters of the Australian UFO research community, that the Army was not a major player in investigating the UFO phenomenon in Australia.
The former Department of Air/current RAAF
The Directorate of Air Force Intelligence (DAFI) of the former DOA (1939-1973) took the lead in collecting and examining reports of UFOs from the early 1950's. How and why the DOA was tasked with this role is not yet clear. The Project is looking for early material from the Archives which may throw light on this topic.
All the material examined indicates that DAFI was, for the main, not really interested in conducting any scientific research into the phenomenon. The impression gained from comments on the RAAF's UFO policy file series was that, for the most part, examining UFO reports was merely a job that had to be done:
- "The investigation of Unidentified Flying Objects is understandably a tedious task and one in which the investigator may frequently have little faith or interest." (1)
- "As you are probably aware the Department of Air is concerned solely with any possible threat to Australian security and does not go into detailed scientific investigation of UFO reports." (2)
- "We spoke. While I agree with you in principle, the practicalities suggest we will continue to wear the responsibility. You should, however, ensure that the impact of this chore does not unduly impede our normal business." (3)
There were however, indications at times of a softening of this attitude. For example an examination of file 554/1/30 reveals the original of a letter from Dr M J Duggin employed by the CSIRO to Squadron Leader Baxter of DAFI. Folio 115 of 554/1/30 dated 29 Dec 1966 is an internal memo from D/DAFI (Ops) to DAFI which included:
- "You will note that these scientists are mainly interested in the unexplained UFO's, but as far as I can make out they would like information on all sightings...These scientists, with all the documents and facilities available to them, are obviously in a position to assist us in this matter, and though I am not too keen on releasing the details of the RAAF investigations or anything which may increase the interest of the general public in this field, I think we should give these scientists the information they require." (4)
What is interesting here is the comment "...the unexplained UFO's..." This is an internal memo, way before the FOI Act allowed outsiders to see it. Here are DAFI staff writing of "unexplained UFO's." It is realised that this is in the context of what Duggin was interested in. However, the author does not dispute the fact that there were some UFO reports which remain unexplained after investigation.
DAFI tried on a number of occasions to pass off at least part of the task to other agencies:
1. The Joint Intelligence Bureau of the DOD in 1957. A letter dated 1 Apr 1957 from DAFI to the JIB, said in part "...reports could best be investigated and evaluated by one of your scientific research officers..." (5)
2. The Department of Supply in 1971. A Memo dated 27 Jul 1971 from DAFI to S/AIR/SS stated in part:
"You spoke to me recently on the matter of Unidentified Flying Objects (UFOs) and you mentioned that the Department of Supply may be interested in investigating this subject. This minute provides a brief historical sketch of this subject and my reaction to the proposal." (6)
No other reference to this interest by the Department of Supply has been located although no Head Office Department of Supply UFO files have yet been found.
3. The Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation in 1973. In Aug 1973 Prof J Allen Hynek was out here in Australia and together with Dr Michael Duggin and Harry Turner of the JIB, attended a DAFI meeting on the 24th. A DAFI file note (7) called it "An unofficial meeting...in an endeavour to expand the scientific relationship to the problem." In the meeting, Duggin was described as "...a member of the CSIRO and is currently based in Sydney (North Ryde) and heading the Australian research aspects of ERSAT." Paragraph 5 of the note read:
- "DAFI suggested that CSIRO or the Dept of Science ( but preferably the former) seemed to be logical agencies to conduct greater in depth investigation in Australia.
- DAFI agreed that a selection of reports (mainly those which were unanswerable and scientific in context) could possibly be made available to CSIRO for further study and computerization."
However, nothing officially came from any of these three approaches by DAFI to shift the "UFO problem" from them to somewhere else in the Government. DAFI remained the "Official" Government UFO agency.
A major change of policy was announced in the media on 2 May 1984:
"UNUSUAL AERIAL SIGHTINGS - RAAF CHANGE IN POLICY
The RAAF in future will investigate fully only those Unusual Aerial Sightings (UAS) which suggest a defence or national security implication. The Minister for Defence, Mr Gordon Scholes, said today that while the RAAF would continue to be the first point of contact, UAS reports not considered to have a defence or security implication would not be further investigated.
Instead they would be recorded and the UAS observer would be given the address of civilian UAS research organisations if the observer wished to pursue the matter further. Mr Scholes said that in the past the RAAF's investigation of all UAS reports had often proved time consuming, unproductive and had led to many man-hours of follow-up action by the RAAF and other agencies such as the Department of Aviation and the Bureau of Meteorology.
He said that procedures for investigating UAS reports had remained unchanged for many years. The vast majority of reports submitted by the public had proven not to have a national security significance."
A deduction from the last paragraph of the announcement is that some reports in fact had a "national security implication." It is generally understood just what a "defence implication" is, e.g. an unauthorised intrusion into Australian air space by an unidentified man-made aircraft. However, just what constitutes a "national security implication" as opposed to a "defence implication" remains unclear.
Nothing was known previously of the inside deliberations behind this policy shift. Recently however, when examining files at RAAF Base Edinburgh a file was located with
a draft Support Command Air Staff Instruction no 3/A/3 (reference AF 84/3508 part 1 of 12 April 1984.) This said that the RAAF is the first point of contact and that most UAS from the public are found to be natural or man-made.
"The RAAF accepts reports on UAS and attempts an allocation of reliability. However, few reports are of any direct interest to the RAAF."
This was followed by a piece about the Condon report conclusions, then:
- "Experience in the RAAF since the early 1950s supports the Condon report conclusion...The RAAF is responsible for the acceptance and evaluation of UAS reports. Those which suggest a defence or national security implication are further investigated and a probable cause determined..."
The draft went on to say that DAFI is to assess such reports. Reports considered not having defence or national security implications are not investigated further and are filed at Command HQ's:
- "On return of part 2, the report is to be examined in terms of defence or national security implications, to assess whether further investigation is warranted. In general terms, further investigation is to be confined to sightings of a terrestrial, rather than an extra-terrestrial nature. Sightings of interest to the RAAF would involve incursions into Australian airspace by man-made objects, and particularly include sightings near defence or other sensitive establishments. The traditional "lights in the sky" are no longer cause for RAAF investigation."
The sentence "...further investigation is to be confined to sightings of a terrestrial, rather than an extra-terrestrial nature." is very intriguing! This seems to be saying that although the RAAF knew some sightings were of an extra-terrestrial nature, it wasn’t interested in these! A very rare admission indeed for the RAAF. The document goes on:
- "Command intelligence staff are to be made aware immediately of any report warranting further investigation. On receipt of such a report, CINTO is to:
a. inform DAFIS and the Chief of Staff (COFS)
b. commence an immediate investigation and instruct the UAS investigator at the reporting unit to complete Annex A part 3 (Unit report).
c. complete Annex A part 4 on receipt of completed parts 1-3 and report the findings of his investigation to COFS and DAFIS." (8)
Note that the 2 May 1984 media release didn’t contain the reference to "extra-terrestrial
This new policy lasted ten years, and then in 1994 the DOD policy again changed :
"Unidentified Aerial Sightings. Revised policy.
- "Consideration of the scientific record suggests that, whilst not all UAS have a ready explanation, there is no compelling reason for the RAAF to continue to devote resources to recording, investigating and attempting to explain UAS. The RAAF no longer accepts reports on UAS..."
"Some UAS may relate to events that could have a defence, security or public safety implications, such as man-made debris falling from space, a burning aircraft or an aircraft making an unauthorised incursion into Australian air space. Where members of the community may have witnessed an event of this type they are encouraged to contact the police, civilian aviation authorities or coast watch."
"2. The change in policy will not be publicised by press release. Known UFO groups will be contacted individually by mail and provided with a copy of the new policy together with a brief explanations of the implications for them." (9)
Three points of the above, call for comment:
The use of the phrase "Consideration of the scientific record..." when it is clear from the DOA's own statements that it "...does not go into detailed scientific investigation." (2)
The statement "... not all UAS have a ready explanation..." indicates that the DOD recognised that some reports were puzzling (indeed their own investigations sometimes labelled a report as "unidentified" or "unknown.")
That "The change in policy will not be publicised by press release." After 45 years it was to be a quiet exit.
Other areas of the DOD since 1977
A check of other areas of the DOD, namely the Army, the Navy, the DSTO and the DOD intelligence areas by way of an FOI request in 2004 by the Project, was met with a response that they were unable to locate any files originating in these areas dealing with the topic of UFOs for the period 1977 to 2004.
With the latest change of policy, came a call for all areas of the RAAF to close off their files dealing with UAS. Twenty three such files were collected and lodged with the NAA in 1994. The Project located and examined these files in 2004.
So, since 1994 the DOD has referred all sighting reports from the general public to civilian UFO groups, and there has been no evidence that the RAAF has investigated any UFO reports in the period 1994 to date.
Does the DOD have a position in 2005? It certainly does. The current Department web site has the following statement regarding UFO sightings:
"Unidentified Aerials Sightings (UAS)
Sightings of unusual or unidentified aerial objects or UFO's.
Provided by: Directorate of Concepts and Capability Development Royal Australian Air Force Postal: Russell Offices Department of Defence Canberra ACT 2600
The Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) formerly had a responsibility for investigating and assessing the validity of UAS. After careful examination of the factual data and historical records that had been gathered over many years, it was determined that the collective evidence did not warrant the continued allocation of resources by the RAAF to investigate and report on UAS. Subsequently, the RAAF ceased this function.
Current Defence policy on UAS where members of the public may have questions on, or seek to report sightings, is to direct them to their local police authorities or civil Unidentified Flying Object (UFO) research organisations, through the relevant state telephone directory." (10)
Was there a "secret" Australian Government agency behind the scenes examining UFO reports? If there was, we have yet to come across any indication of it in our look at a diverse range of Government files. The logical place for the DOD to forward interesting cases would have been its own intelligence area, the former JIB (later the JIO, now the DIO). Yet we have interviewed an employee of the JIB with a personal interest in UFOs (who worked there between 1964 & 1982) who tells us that the UFO work was conducted primarily in a non-officially approved capacity.
If there was no "secret" UFO research agency within the Government, then the "official" investigation agency, the DOD (RAAF) was in fact, the final stop in the flow of raw material. The RAAF's own story is that it was solely concerned with the defence and security of the country and was not into detailed scientific investigation of UFOs. There are some intriguing cases in RAAF documents which appear tantalisingly difficult to explain in mundane terms (see Appendix A.) However, the RAAF was not interested in pursuing the "extra-terrestrial" possibility of these events. Sadly, our inspection of Government documents to date indicates that neither was any other Australian Government agency. One wonders if a different outcome might have eventuated if the Australian Government had originally nominated the CSIRO as the prime collection agency and given it a brief to actually scientifically research the subject?
So where to from here?
While continuing to look for harder to find Government files as well as researching the very early history of Government interest in "flying saucers" the Project will shortly move into part two of its mission plan. This is to document and make available the "best" Australian UFO cases held by both civilian and Government sources.
As a consequence of this, the previously monthly Project Newsletter will be distributed on a more irregular basis; only as sufficient new information comes to hand, and the "Revelations" column in the "Australasian UFOlogist" will also reduce in frequency.
The intent of phase two is to produce an electronic collection of documents on Australia's "best UFO cases" and "best evidence." Preliminary work on these cases has already commenced and details so far collected are available on our web site.
Contacting the Secretariat at the above address
As always, we welcome your comments on the material we present in these Newsletters. Our contact details are:
(1) National Archives of Australia: A703, 554/1/30 Part 2. Memo 1 Mar 68. CAS to HQOC & HQSC.
(2) National Archives of Australia: A703, 554/1/30 Part 2. Memo. 6 Dec 68. DAFI to HQSC.
(3) National Archives of Australia: A703, 554/1/30 Part 3. Memo. 26 May 1981.
(4) National Archives of Australia: A703, 554/1/30 part 1folio 115 dated 29 Dec 1966
(5) National Archives of Australia: A703, 554/1/30 part 1 p 69.
(6) National Archives of Australia: A703, 554/1/30 part 2 p164.
(7) National Archives of Australia: A703, 554/1/30 part 3 folio 16.
(8) File 5/6/Air Part 3. 9755 -3 "Unidentified Aerial Sightings" pp11-14. Chief of Air Staff HQ Support Command. File sighted at RAAF base Edinburgh in 2004.
(9) File 5/113/Air part 11. 9755-13 "Unidentified Aerial Sightings." Folio 28, HQ no 82 Wing RAAF base Amberley Qld). File sighted at RAAF base Edinburgh in 2004.
A SAMPLE OF INTERESTING CASE LOCATED IN RAAF FILES 1960-1972
The format of each case is:
Header: showing Date/Location/Time/Duration/Number of witnesses/Gender of witness/ Name of witness(es)/Type of report (Modified Hynek classification)
Modified Hynek classification system
|Daylight disk or other shape
||Nocturnal light- a point source of light
|Close encounter (within 500m) at any time of day or night
|Daylight light only - a point source of light
|Nocturnal object where the UFO had a defined size rather than being a point source
|Photographs or video were taken
||Note: ( ) items in brackets e.g. (2-3mins) indicates a range.
Text: A summary of the event
Source: Page x on digital copy of 580/1/y part 1 held by National Australia Archives. Original file reference (where known).
15 November 1960 15 miles north of Launceston Tas 1040hrs (5-7 secs) DO
A USAF JB-57 aircraft crew operating out of RAAF East Sale reported seeing an unusual object. The aircraft was at 40,000 feet at 350 knots flying a heading of 340 degrees. The object was estimated to be at 35,000 feet heading 140 degrees at high speed. It disappeared under the aircraft's left wing. The pilot banked the plane but they did not re-establish visual. In colour the object was said to be "rather translucent." "There were no sharp edges but rather fuzzy." The size was estimated at 90 feet in diameter, and it did not appear to have any depth to it. (Pages 44-45 on digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 2.)
3 June 1961 Darwin NT 2130hrs 1M Casey Radar
Radar RAAF Darwin "reported radar contact during met balloon flight 2130hrs." "Contact at 40000 feet descended to 32000 feet in approximately 5 minutes. Contact with no apparent lateral movement. First sighting azimuth 180 elevation 80 deg range 15000 yards." (Page 148 of digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 3. Telex originally classified "Secret.")
15 February 1963 Willow Grove via Moe Vic 0710hrs 1M Brew CE1
While milking cows, a farmer saw an object descending from the E to a height of about 75 feet. It hovered, then ascended to the W. It was 25 feet in diameter, and 9 feet high. The lower portion was 3 feet high and rotating anti-clockwise. It was of a bluish colour. The upper portion appeared stationary and was a battleship grey colour. Protruding out of this dome was something which resembled "a broom handle." "There was a swishing and burbling-type sound." (Pages 313-319 on digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 4. Original reference 5/6/Air (26) Victoria Barracks.)
25 July 1963 Warragul Vic 1930hrs 20secs 1M Ashcroft NO
One circular object "light shade of grey" with a noise similar to a jet aircraft. "The upper portion of object appeared to have a smaller diameter." Approx 400 feet up. Lost in mid-air. "The upper part of the object appeared to be revolving." While the object was in sight the air was unusually warm. (Pages 292-294 on digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 4. Original reference 7/6/Air (39) Victoria Barracks.)
13 January 1965 41S 167E 0845Z 1M Shannon +others NO
Report of UFOs by Qantas flight 363. Course 275 degrees mag at 20,000 feet. Shortly after sunset. "Single vapour trail appeared to north west travelling east...became seven distinct contrails apparently made by large aircraft in loose formation..." "Second pilot also recalls that at approximately longitude 166E this morning on the Sydney to Wellington flight he noticed what he considered as eleven ships in group on his radar screen." RNZAF-radars at Wellington and Ohakea had nothing at height within 15-200mls except "angels" S of Wellington speed 100kts. Copy passed to US Air Attaché. Search of the area by aircraft on 14 January revealed nothing, except an unusually large number of high density cloud radar contacts. Up to 10 at a time were obtained at ranges up to 70Nmls. (Pages 121-122 on digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 4. Telex originally classified "confidential.")
19 January 1966 Tully Qld 0900hrs 1M Pedley CE2
Travelling in a tractor when noted hissing noise. Saw object 25 yards away 30 feet above ground, rising vertically. Light grey, dull not reflecting. Object 25 feet long and 8-9 feet deep. Rose to 60 foot. Departed SW climbing at 45 degrees. Appeared to be rotating at all times. Receded into distance. Clearly defined circular area in swamp grass 32 foot long by 25 feet wide. Reeds lying in clockwise curves. (Pages 164-169 & 175 of digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 5. Original ref: 5/2/1/Air (6) Penrith.)
14 August 1966 Kunnunurra WA 2345hrs 270mins 1M Joanston NL
Bright light came from the SW and slowed down and became stationary. 6-8 red lights in a row. 4 lights approached until they were within 400 yards. Hovered 20 feet above ground. White light illuminated the area. "Flying saucer" there. "Machine tilted" as it rose. Silver colour and oval. 10 feet high 180 feet long-80-100 feet wide. Moved around and appeared to land. (Pages 133-139 of digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 6. Original ref: 5/15/1/Air (54) Op.Cmd.)
5 July 1967 Murray Bridge SA 1M Langsford CE2
Five miles NNE of Murray Bridge on the Murray Bridge to Karoonda Road. It was a clear night with thick ground fog. Witness was driving a motor vehicle when he experienced interference on the car radio, which became a high pitched whine. He turned the radio off. Within 100-150 yards the motor of the vehicle stopped by itself. The ignition was on but the warning lights on the dash came on. The ignition key was still in the on position. Looking up he saw a distinct break in the fog with stars visible. A "large dark shadow" was seen at a height of 20 feet. The shadow seemed 120 feet thick. Above this shadow was a greyish-blue glow. The top of the shadow appeared convex. He stoped the vehicle and got out to look but the shadow and light had gone. There was no sound. The object had vanished. The two banks of fog came together. The witness returned to the vehicle and tried the ignition and the motor worked. He switched on the radio and there was no interference. (Pages 178-184 of digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 8. Reported through DCA.)
22 August 1968 Zanthus WA 1740hrs 10mins 2M Smith & Gardin
Aircraft VHRTO was flying a charter run between Adelaide and Perth. Was at 8000 feet, 190-195 knots, tracking 270 degrees magnetic. Gardin saw a UFO and woke Smith. Ahead of the aircraft at the same level and 50 degrees to the right of Smith's seat, Smith said "I saw, a formation of aircraft. In the middle was a large aircraft, and formatted to the right and left and above, were 4 or 5 smaller aircraft. "Kalgoorlie DCA advised them there was no traffic in the area. Then radio communications were lost. "Main ship split into two sections still maintaining the same level, and the smaller aircraft then flew out left and right...At this time there appeared to be about 6 smaller aircraft taking turns of going out and coming back and formatting in the two halves...Sometimes the two halves joined and split, and the whole cycle continued for 10 minutes...smaller craft had a constant cigar shape...At 0950 GMT the whole formation joined together as if at a single command. Then departed at a tremendous speed...departed in about 3 or 4 seconds, diminishing in size till out of sight." Weather was fine, no haze above 5000 feet, 2/8 alto stratus to the south. Immediately after the departure of the objects radio communications resumed. (Pages 218-223 of digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 10.)
18 October 1968 Darwin NT 1417Z 7mins RAF aircrew NL
A RAF Hercules aircraft no 9651 took off from Darwin. When at 1500 feet, heading 290 degrees, the crew made a visual observation of a light which they took to be another aircraft. This aircraft showed white lights "Presumed to be those from fuselage windows." But did not have any navigation or anti-collision beacons.
This aircraft crossed the path of the Hercules from right to left in front of the Hercules. The crew estimated its height to be 2500 feet. The radar on the Hercules indicated a target at 15 miles range, estimated speed 200 knots, travelling on a heading of 230-250 degrees magnetic. Its estimated size was at least that of the Hercules. No unauthorised aircraft were in the area.
A check revealed that ground radar was not operating at the time. No additional information was gained from DCA, Met, Navy, Customs or ASIO. No unscheduled aircraft landed at Broome, Derby, Port Headland or Wyndham.
In a memo dated 1 Nov 68 Penrith to Dept of Air ref 5/2/7/Air (86) & 5/15/1/Air (26). "The fact that the sighting was made by experienced RAF aircrew and detected by the aircraft's radar leaves very little doubt that an aircraft was in the area. As the aircraft has not been identified, the possibility of the violation of our national airspace cannot be discounted." (Pages 197-203, 205 of digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 10.)
17 Feb 69 Flinders Park Adelaide SA 0250hrs 25mins 1F Ballestrin CE3
Noise attracted witness. Silver grey inverted saucer on ground. Surrounded by pure white light. Saw humanoid figure walking around object. Heard beeps similar to Morse code for about 10mins. (Pages 67-71 of copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 11.)
23 May 69 Kalamunda WA 1F Cosgrove + ATC RV
At 1101,1108,1115,1118,1136 & 1142z, ATC radar-strong stationary paint 300 deg 9NM from Kalamunda. Seen at same time as object like a "big street slight" reported over Cloverdale by a Mrs Cosgrove. Radar returns were strong-stationary. Met. Radar at Perth also had unusual returns but times/dates did not tally with above. Return from this latter radar could have been due to inversion over OTC antennas on ground.
Mrs Cosgrove 1835hrs (1035z) of Cloverdale WA. Blue/white light, with red light on top from SE 12 deg el. Very fast but slow at other times. Stopped overhead for 15mins then left at speed to N. (Pages 238-241 of copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 11.)
2 Jun 70 Zanci Station NSW 60nm SE of Mildura(1930-200hrs) (15-20mins) 1M Vigar CE1
Twenty year out spotlighting saw two small red lights and gave chase. Got closer and saw a bright diamond shaped object. Bright all over and larger than a semi-trailer standing on end. There was an audible whistling sound. He got to within 60 yards. The object rose up and at 100 feet faded out but the sound continued for a while. Mr Vigar revisited the spot the next day but there were no visible tracks. RAAF conclusion-"If this is not a hoax and the object seen has been described correctly, then despite all efforts no explanation can be offered." (Pp64-69 & 70 of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 13.)
29 Jun 70 Sepik River PNG 1720hrs 1M Keog Radar
Pilot of F27 aircraft VH-FNK reported radar observation. On descent from 12,500 feet noted echoes on radar 60 deg green to abeam his plane. Radar scale set at 180nm and echoes appeared to be 60nm from plane and keeping station with him. There were five cigar shaped objects. With the radar scanner on maximum depression or elevation the echoes disappeared. DCA advised there were no aircraft in the area. File ref 69/4393. (P53 of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 13.)
3 & 25 Jul 72 Mooraduc Level Crossing Vic 2100hrs (15-20mins) 1F Puddy CE1
Weather clear. Object above car. 20 foot forward. 45 deg angle. Iridescent blue light. Bright. At nearest 100 feet up. Wider than the road. Sound similar to elevator. Hovering. Followed car. Last seen Junction of Mooraduc and Nepean Highways. Object 20 foot high.
Notes on p 31. "No military helicopters operating. Checked with DCA and local helicopter operators. Only traceable IFR helicopter based at Sale. When Mrs Puddy made initial sighting report by phone she expressed a wish not to be interviewed."
(Pp26-31 of RAAF file 580/1/1 Part 17.
"The information supplied by Mrs Puddy on the attached pro forma differs markedly from that reported by the Duty Officer on the evening of Monday 20th July. On that occasion Mrs Puddy reported as follows. She said that the object like two saucers together, silver blue in colour appeared above the road emitting blue light. The object ‘took control of the car’ so that Mrs Puddy pulled over to the roadside but could not open the doors, nor could she restart the engine. She reported that she ‘sensed’ but did not hear the following message. ‘All your tests will be negative. Tell the media not to panic. We mean no harm. You now have control.’ The UFO then vanished and a very scared Mrs Puddy started the car and headed home via the Rye Police station. (It subsequently transpired that she had reported the incident to the Rosebud Police station.) Senior Constable Cox of Rosebud told me that Mrs Puddy was known to him, and appeared to be a rational woman not given to flights of fancy. He was somewhat amazed when Mrs Puddy asked him the meaning of the word ‘media’. She said she had never heard it before. Senior Constable Cox also advised that a Mr and Mrs Beale of Main Ridge ..."
P103 of RAAF file 580/1/1 Part 18.
25 Jul 72 Main Ridge Vic Approx 2200hrs 2mins 2 wits Mr & Mrs Beale NO
An object appeared suddenly to the W of their property. Over tree tops Object surrounded by light. Pinkish glow. Sort of a hum sound. Heading E. (Pp96-98 of RAAF file 580/1/1 Part 18.)
25 Jul 72 Montrose Vic App2000hrs 50secs 3wits Toal NL
A blue/white glow was seen at 5 deg el SSW. Soundless. (P99 of RAAF file 580/1/1Part 18.)