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Black triangles could be UFOs.

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Black triangles are the name given to a series of Unidentified Flying Objects (UFO) with several common similarities. UFO Black triangles have been observed in the skies since the 1940s (and possibly earlier) to the present day. UFO Black triangles have appeared more commonly over cities of the United States, and England, but have been spotted world wide including a mass sighting over St. Petersburg, Russia on February 19, 1997.

black triangle.
Artist's concept of a typical UFO black triangle object.

Since that event, hundreds of observers have reported enormous, totally silent, black triangular craft hovering or slowly cruising at low altitudes over cities and highways, usually at night and making no attempt to evade detection. The craft are even described by many observers as having some sort of "running lights", either bright white lights or flashing colored lights. These lights usually appear at each corner point of the triangle. Sometimes a red pulsating light can be seen at the center.

These objects are also sometimes known by the names "Big Black Deltas" (BBDs) or "Flying Triangles."

Reported sightings of UFO Black triangles.

Unknown to many, triangular-shaped UFOs have been reported since the 1940s. Accounts of flying triangles, wedges, or boomerangs have increased dramatically since the 1990s. The sightings report clearly visible objects over densely populated areas and highways, many over the United States and England, as well as other parts of the world. A geographic distribution of U.S. sightings has been correlated by a currently inactive American-based investigative organization, the National Institute for Discovery Science, which led to a July, 2002 report that suggested that the craft may belong to the U.S. Air Force; however, a subsequent report in August, 2004 by the same organization (NIDS) found that the rash of sightings did not conform to previous deployment of black project aircraft and that the objects' origins and agendas were unknown.

Typical sightings of UFO Black triangles.

B-2 Spirit.
B-2 Spirit stealth bomber often mistaken for UFO Black triangle.

Most black triangle reports indicate that the craft are at least 200 ft (60 m) long and often likened to the dimensions of a typical football field in width. They usually move very slowly or linger hovering in one place in the sky for several minutes. Sometimes they even land on the ground. They typically appear silently, and seemingly "out of nowhere", drifting a few hundred feet or less above the ground. Sometimes the craft are reported to be capable of sudden, very fast acceleration, as are often mentioned in the descriptions of other kinds of UFOs.

Some triangular UFO reports may be sightings of one or more government black projects, which may be under development by the military and contractors as security and surveillance tools. On the other hand, the common observation that these craft appear over populated areas and make no effort to evade detection sheds doubt on any argument that they are an advanced United States military craft under development, like the F-117 Nighthawk or B-2 Spirit stealth aircraft, which were sighted only occasionally during testing over sparsely populated areas of the Southwest, such as Groom Lake (Area 51), and usually at night.

Illinois police sighting incident of UFO Black triangle.

On January 5, 2000, beginning shortly after 4:00 am, five on-duty Illinois police officers in separate locations sighted and reported a massive, unidentified triangular aircraft. Two of the five officers reported flight characteristics that do not conform to currently known technologies, as the object appeared to move at incredible speeds without making any sound. Sightings occurred in Highland, Illinois by a civilian who first reported to the local police department and subsequent sightings took place in Lebanon, Summerfield, Shiloh, Millstadt, Dupo and O'Fallon, Illinois. Local Scott Air Force Base public relations office denied any knowledge of the event. The incident was featured in Peter Jennings' final ABC television special, "UFOs: Seeing is Believing". The event has been addressed by several U.S. cable television programs and one independent documentary.

This story was also featured in 2005 on a segment of the SciFi Channel paranormal investigation series "Proof Positive" (episode #108). To substantiate that the police officers did in fact witness the same unexplained aircraft, and their reports correlated together, all five were given a lie detector test and asked various questions about the incident. All five officers passed the test and the show gave the story a "proof positive".

UFO Black triangle: Rendlesham Forest incident.

A Pyramid shaped craft was reported to have landed during the December 27, 1980 Rendlesham Forest UFO incident near an American air base in Suffolk, England. Military personnel even reported to have approached at least one of the landed craft in the forest and observed it in great detail before it once again took flight. Another craft was observed landing in an open field near the base and then taking off at incredible speed. Between 2002 and 2005, reporter Bryant Gumbel hosted a series of exclusive SciFi Channel documentaries, one of which was entitled, UFO Invasion at Rendlesham, and focused on this incident where he interviewed some of the men involved with the sighting. The documentary toured some of the various scenes and attempted to gather evidence that something landed in the forest.

Black triangles: Phoenix lights incident.

One of the more famous appearances of these craft was during the event known as the "Phoenix Lights", where multiple unidentified objects, many of them black triangles, were spotted by the residents of Phoenix, Arizona and videotaped by both the local media and residents with camcorders across multiple evenings beginning on Thursday, March 13, 1997. Some lights drifted as low as 1000 feet and moved far too slowly and silently for conventional aircraft. If they were helicopters, they produced no sound. Some of the lights appeared to group up in a giant "V" formation that lingered above the city for several minutes. Many residents reported one triangle to be over a mile wide that drifted slowly over their houses blocking out the stars of the night sky. Other reports indicated the craft were spotted flying away from Phoenix as far away as Las Vegas, Nevada and Los Angeles, California.

An official report made by the Air Force about the incident concluded that the military had been testing flares launched from conventional aircraft during that time. Eyewitnesses confirmed military jets were scrambled from nearby Luke Air Force Base, but instead of launching flares, they were seen chasing after some of the objects.

The next few nights, in an attempt to recreate the incident, local pilots flew prop-planes over the city in a "V" formation, but the sounds of their engines were easily heard. The original lights made no sound. Flares were also deployed above Phoenix. Comparison of the video taken of the lights (which appeared at night) against daytime images of the same scene show that the lights "disappear" at the exact moment they are shown to fall behind a mountain range. The mountains were invisible against the night sky. There were also no reported radar sightings of the objects which is consistent with the flare theory.

See Phoenix Lights for more details.

The Belgian Air Force report of Black triangles.

On March 30, 1990, citizens of the city of Ans, Belgium spotted a large black triangular craft that hovered silently over the city for several minutes. Local police officials arrived on the scene and reported observing the object as it hovered over apartment buildings. One officer reported the object released a red glowing disk of light from the center that flew down to the ground and darted around several buildings before disappearing. The larger craft eventually took off at high speed.

The Belgian Air Force scrambled F-16s to pursue the craft once it was spotted on ground radar systems. Both the fighter pilots and radar operators reported the object would dart ahead at incredible speeds every time they finally had a radar lock on the craft. One pilot reported the object's speed at over 900 knots. After 9 confirmed target locks the object finally vanished off their screens.

The Belgian Air Force has gone on record with the details of its Black Triangle pursuit. It released its radar video footage and its conclusions, ruling out the following origins of the object in question:

  • Balloons. Impossible due to the highly variable speeds (confirmed visually and by radar).
  • Ulm. Same as for balloons.
  • UAV. Impossible due to the hovering characteristics.
  • Aircraft (including Stealth). Same as for RPV. No noise.
  • Laser projections or mirages. Unlikely due to lack of projection surface (no clouds). Light spots have been observed from different locations. Light spots moved over distance of more than 15 nautical miles (28 km). Form of unlighted part of spots has been observed with spectacles. Laser projections or mirages can not be detected by radar.

The report concludes that the Belgian Air Force was "unable to identify either the nature or the origin of the phenomenon."

It should be noted that some subsequent studies present a much more cautious and sceptical view of the events discussed in the Belgian Air Force report - disputing both the accuracy of some of the statements made in that report, and the interpretation of the events described (see for example the detailed summary at http://members.aol.com/TPrinty/Belg.html, which also provides references to other sources).

Moscow night sightings of UFO style Black triangle.

An especially interesting sightings occurred near Moscow on March 12, 1990. Several groups of UFOs were seen, some of which were spheres and discs, and some of which appeared to be huge triangular-shaped craft. Many local people spent the night on their rooftops watching these silent objects dart through the sky. In fact, during the spring of 1990, it appears that Russia had more, and more spectacular, UFO cases than did Belgium. The CIA retained several accounts of this wave from the Soviet-Russian media, although CIA reports themselves, assuming they exist, have yet to be released.

Black triangle: The TR-3A and TR-3B.

A speech given at the International UFO Congress in Laughlin, Nevada in 1998 by Edgar Rothschild Fouche, (an engineer who claims to have worked at Area 51), suggests that the Black Triangle is a Top Secret, experimental, U.S. Air Force vehicle known as the TR-3B, code named "Astra."

According to Fouche, the TR-3B is a 600-foot-wide (180 m), triangular aerospace vehicle that utilizes a nuclear reactor to generate an intense magnetic field that negates Earth's gravitational forces on the mass of the vehicle by 89%, rendering it extremely lightweight. It also manipulates this field for propulsion and can maneuver on the spot, vertically and horizontally, at incredible speeds up to Mach 9, and climb to an altitude of 120,000 feet (36.6 km). The aircraft is also equipped with advanced Electromagnetic Counter Measures ECM systems that render it nearly invisible to radar, or make the craft appear as an aircraft of smaller size than it really is.

There is also mention of the TR-3A, code named "Black Manta", which is reported to be similar to the 3B but smaller in size, with a boomerang-shaped wingspan of 60 feet (18 m) and a tapered length of 45 feet (14 m).

If it exists, the TR-3A/B may be the most classified aerospace development program in existence. Fouche reported that the development of the crafts was funded by black project monies, and overseen by the NRO, CIA, and NSA. Design of the vehicles was part of the Aurora Project, and was spawned by technologies developed in the 1980s for other classified aircraft such as the SR-75 Aurora. Some speculate the technology behind such crafts was the result of reverse engineering captured or exchanged alien technology, such as that believed by many to have been retrieved after the Roswell, New Mexico UFO crash incident in 1947.

Criticisms of the Theory of UFO Black triangles.

Due to the extreme secrecy that such a project would be surrounded in, it is impossible to verify any of Mr. Fouche's involvement. Further, there are a number of questionable scientific claims in the account. Specifically, magnetic and gravitational forces have no effect on one another in any mainstream physical models, and so it is unclear how an "intense magnetic field" could possibly alter gravity's effect on the craft. Also, if a conventional nuclear reactor is used, it would have to be designed in an unconventional and otherwise unheard of way: the reactor would need bulky shielding, and the heat produced would have to be converted into electricity to run the coils that produce the magnetic field used to levitate the aircraft, making all the needed machinery probably too heavy for flight.

Additionally, the sheer magnitude by which the TR3A/B is said to exceed the flight capabilites of all known aircraft leads many skeptics to question why none of the obviously great advancements in aerospace technology have been put to use in other applications.

Finally, while the TR-3A/B allegation has been exercised by some as an explanation for many triangle sightings, no evidence has been presented that this theory accounts for the hundreds of reported similar sightings of triangular-shaped aircraft with odd aerodynamic flight characteristics that have been documented as early as the 1930s.

Other theories about Black triangle ufos. There are several other possible explanations for the sightings:

British HALO stealth aircraft (Artist's depiction).
  • that they are previously unknown American aircraft, manned or unmanned, which are being deployed in a 'high-visibility' fashion, but without public notice for some reason;.
  • that they belong to some nation or organization other than the United States, which wishes to display itself in this fashion;.
  • that they are of extraterrestrial origin;.
  • that they are some sort of common error of identification of one or multiple 'conventional' modern aircraft, and/or that many sighters' imaginations and memories are influenced by hearing of similar UFO reports, either of which would explain why the high rate of sightings began in the 1990s.
  • That these UFO black triangles are actually the new top-secret British spy-plane HALO. See image right.

One sometimes-voiced theory is that the craft represent some form of advanced technology lighter than air craft, possibly a rumored "stealth blimp." This would account for their size, low speed, low altitude, and silence. Such a vehicle would be advantageous in terms of payload size, fuel efficiency, extended time aloft, and ability to remain close to a location on the ground or a ground vehicle or group of vehicles for long periods. However, this would not explain why they would be displayed so freely, but with no official comment of any kind, nor the reports of sudden high acceleration as in the Illinois case. This possibility must, however, be weighed against the "Belgian Triangle" sightings involving Black Triangles similar to the objects sighted in American airspace. These Belgian Triangles demonstrated flight performance characteristics beyond the fighter jets used by the Belgian Air Force in their attempt to intercept them. The Wallonia Triangles were photographed, filmed and tracked on radar, ruling out mass delusion as the source of at least that sighting.

Other theories, such as these sightings being either genuinely 'paranormal' in some way, or, conversely, merely some sort of unexplainable mass delusion, open the door to much broader speculation. Until more evidence of a different kind appears, or an American military or other group officially claims and demonstrates responsibility, what really lies behind the American reports cannot be definitely known.

Black triangles in fiction.

  • A few black triangle ships have been featured in the X-Files Television series.
  • The fictional experimental F-302 aerospace fighters developed by the Air Force in the sci-fi television series Stargate SG-1, are based on reverse-engineered alien technology. These craft are triangular in appearance and may have been inspired by the TR-3A.

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