What is this? UFO pics...

Surely its manmade but what?

http://www.earthfiles.com/news.php?ID=1252&category=Environment

My first thought is a street light. :slight_smile:

I have no idea but…WOW. :cool:

There was an article in my local paper today about the British police force getting remote-controlled surveillance helicopters that looked something like that. It could be a similar craft.

Here’s an article with a picture. For all we know, the thing in the OP could have spinning propellers on its arms that are invisible against the sky.

50-50 chance it’s a Photoshop. Maybe better – if that thing had been flying around a neighborhood, there’d be lots of pictures of it floating around the internet.

There are some more pictures here, including one showing ‘alien’ writing on the largest wing.
All those pointy antenna around the circular hole in the center make the thing look like some artist’s variant on an Ionocraft

A comment from the link:

For something that unusual looking, that can fly, you’d think people would warn the world what they really are so people won’t start claiming they’re alien spacecraft.

Seems to be no mention of its size anywhere, either.

It’s not Japanese. It’s a bit like the writing used in The Matrix, in that it looks like deformed katakana, but there’s only one character that’s clearly legible as katakana: フ /fu/. There is also something that looks like a reversed /so/: ソ. With a fair bit of squinting, you can sort of see a /su/ in there also: ス. For the record “hanripu” would be written: ハンリプ and it doesn’t mean anything.

It’s a Katkurian reconnaissance drone. Its invisibility shield must be damaged. Some of you might think it’s a Thorian Hellbug, and those do look similar, but they have five spikes not three. (Among other differences.)

I can see how you thought that, I thought the same at first, as well.

But if we look at the neutrino inversion ring, it’s obvious that the scalar ports are of the two-stage variety. This would make it a scout drone, not a reconnaissance drone, which we all know do not come equipped with an invisibility shield. Cloaking, yes, invisibility, no.

Those pictures first appeared on the old Art Bell website, which is now www.coasttocoastam.com.

If you go to that site, and read the feedback from people who are familiar with photographic special effects, you would probably conclude, as they did, that it’s a big fake.

I read in another source that the letters are, in fact, Klingon. Any super-nerds here on the SDMB that can read Klingon?

I don’t believe for one second that the people posting pictures are genuinely unknowing of its origin. The photos are too close and too detailed.

I’m not going to be that guy that just screams photoshop! and leaves. My official position is that if those pictures are real, that craft is not of earthly origins.

First, it has no visible means of lift. Since it was claimed to be seen hovering, it needs some type of vertical thrust. There is a close up picture of the end of the longest arm. There appears to be no fan, prop, duct, or any other means of vertical thrust there. If it were the type of craft that Speaker for the Dead linked to, it would need some type of thrust on the long arm to balance the thrust from the ends of the other arms. That’s not the case, so there’s only one other way that it could fly.

It would need thrust to come from the center of the circular opening in the center of the craft. Is it possible that there is a spinning propellor in the opening? No. If there were, it would create torque. There is no visible means to counteract the torque that would be created by any lift that comes from current earth technology. If it were flying, it would be spinning around the center of that opening.

So, it has no way to get off the ground. Even if it could, there is no visible means to control it. Another problem I see is the lack of symmetry. Flying vehicles need to be in a delicate balance of lift/gravity, thrust/drag to fly. The easiest and most common way to achieve a stable balance is to have symmetry (yes there are cases of asymetrical airplanes, but they’re the exception).

The last problem I see is that there is no apparent reason for the arms extending from the center. If you point out any part on a flying machine based on earth technology (airplanes, helicopters, space shuttles, missles…) I could probably tell you why that part is there. Even if I couldn’t, somone could. With aircraft, function comes first, there’s nothing on them just for looks.

So, those arms are there for a reason. They have some magical powers of anti-gravity based on alien technology. Or, the pictures are fake.

There could be a pair of counter-rotating fans in the central opening, but I think we should be seeing some kind of evidence of them, if they were present.

Also, let’s consider the following possibilities:

-The craft may be constructed of extremely lightweight materials - such as polystyrene reinforced with Kevlar tape or something - that would reduce the amount of lift/thrust required to keep it in the air.

-The asymmetry - if the big and small protrusions are wings, it may be that the forward thrust is being delivered from a point near the base of, or even some way along, the large one - a bit like this, only more so.

Or it could be photoshop. If it is, it’s a good one, but I don’t doubt it’s possible. For example, all of the devices in this video are CGI.

All good points. But, if there were counter rotating blades in the middle, the center of lift would have to coincide with the center of gravity. The craft would likely be symetrical to achieve this. Also, for positive stability, there would have to be more weight below the blades then above them. That doesn’t seem possible.

As for the symetry, I conceded that there are examples ( you forgot this one), but they are rare.

If the protrusions were wings, I could see how it may possibly fly. But, it was reported to have been seen hovering. Wing don’t do any good while hovering.

I agree that there is no evidence of photoshopping. But there is also no evidence that this craft could fly with our current technology. So, like I said, it’s either fake or alien. (I’m guessing fake).
ETA - also, what’s the deal with the wires sticking up out of the top? I can’t imagine a reason for those,and they look too flimsy to hold up to much stress caused by any kind of forward flight.

I saw these (photos) recently. My first reaction: 3DS (or Maya, or Vue, etc.) + Photoshop. It would be quite easy to take a bunch of general photgraphs, then render a photorealistic craft in a modelling program to the various perspectives of the photographs you’re using and then integrate them in Photoshop.

The idea that it’s real strikes me as a little absurd for several reasons:

  1. OMFG ALIENS! :rolleyes:
  2. Counter-rotating propellers or not, that thing has absolutely no sensible design whatsoever. It’s far too fanciful – like something out of Anime – to have been designed with any measure of practicality in mind. It’s too implausible. What are the “wings” for? They are asymmetrical to the craft and have differing sizes, thus couldn’t serve an aerodynamic purpose. The wiry spires on top? No idea. Maybe they focus a beam of pure antimatter to annihilate anything below them.
  3. Nonsensical Kanakata-style writing underneath.

It sounds purpose-built for a hoax.

Yes, but if it’s been deliberately constructed for maximum visual weirdness, the centre of gravity might not be where it appears to be - either through the subtle addition of weights or just the clever choice of different materials for different parts.