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Anti-contrail and possible Aurora sighting in Phoenix

From: "Chris O'Leary" 
Date: Tue, 4 Feb 1997 17:14:12 -0800
Subject: Anti-contrail and possible Aurora sighting in Phoenix


I am an experienced military aircraft spotter and have been researching the
activities of the Lockheed Skunk Works with regard to hypersonic aircraft,
so I am very familiar with the alledged (terrestrially-originating)
goings-on in Area 51.

I saw something very interesting today that I wanted to know if you could
explain or would be interested in.

I live in Phoenix and at 4:30 this afternoon my wife and I were talking a
walk.  We started off walking to the South and at 4:30 or so we turned
around to go back to the North.  It was at this time that I observed a very
interesting cloud formation 50 or so miles to the north and about 30 -
35,000 feet up.  The cloud layer at that level was very thin and there were
few other clouds around.

The cloud that I saw had a very precise arc incised about 1/5 of the way
from the right edge.  It looked like about 30 degrees of a circle.  The
weird thing was that this arc was extremely clean and maybe a couple of
hundred yards across.  Imagine a cucumber-shaped oval of snow a mile across
laying in the parking lot of a stadium.  Now drive a  snowplow in a gentle
arc across the right edge of the snow field.  That's what it looked like.
A very clean arc with little or no roiling at the edges. It looked like
someone just erased the clouds in the arc.

Here's the interesting part.  The cloud was oriented E/W.  The South end of
the arc appeared to open S/SW toward the North end of the gulf of
California and (drumroll please) the North end arc appeared to open N/NW
toward our beloved Groom Lake/Tonopah region (or just toward Vegas for
those less conspiracy-oriented).

My question is "Is there any atmospheric/meteorologic or other explanation
for what I saw?"  I observed no vehicles or contrails anywhere in the
vicinity and have seen nothing like this in 30 years or watching the skies.

SInce the entirety of the cloud was excised, if it was a vehicle it would
have to have a pretty good L/D ratio.  It would either have to be unpowered
or have a B-2 like device to eliminate contrails.

Could an extremely hot vehicle reentering the atmosphere (or cruising with
an very interesting propulsion source) vaporize the water in the
surrounding clouds and thus make them disappear?

I am sure that this is some atmospheric phenomenon or something like a
cloud seeding experiment, but its precision and orientation sure make me

Just thought you'd be interested.

E-mail me if you have any ideas or additional questions.

Chris O'Leary

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