If you’re one of those who believes that Area 51 is hiding secret and possibly extraterrestrial aircrafts, this story is for you. If you’re not, you may be after seeing and hearing what an experienced private pilot and aerial photographer with thousands of photos of the base found in a recent picture. Would you believe an unusually long triangular craft that may have been hastily pulled into an equally unusual hangar known as a scoot-and-hide shelter? One that caught the eye not just of the usual tabloids but also experienced Area 51 and military aircraft watchers?
“One of the large hangars south of the main complex appears to have open doors. It is hard to determine what, if anything is inside due to the distance from Zeifman’s plane.”
That’s the analysis from Mystery Wire, which first published the story and the pictures taken by Gabriel Zeifman on his Christmas Day flight around Area 51. Specifically, Zeifman spent a long time in the air, flying his plane past the Nevada Test and Training Range (NTTR), past Papoose Dry Lake, and past Groom Lake and Area 51. Most of the photos (Mystery Wire shows both individual and composites) are extremely high quality because of Zeifman’s equipment and experience. And, in case you’re wondering:
“Similar to two previous flights, Zeifman was not breaking any laws. He is a trained air traffic controller (ATC) and had permission to fly through this restricted government airspace.”
Unfortunately, the photo of the mysterious craft and hangar is of lesser quality due to distance – you didn’t expect the government to put their secret stuff where anyone could see it, did you? Many of the tabloids that subsequently reported on the photos linked them to the possibility that the U.S. government is under obligation to release UFO information within the next six months – that’s not guaranteed. And this isn’t necessarily an ET spacecraft. Fortunately, the good (and militarily experienced) folks at The Drive (Tyler Rogoway and Joseph Trevithick) did a detailed analysis of the photo. But first, they gave some background on the so-called scoot-and-hide hangar.
“The structure is not really just a hangar in the traditional sense. Scoot-and-hide shelters help conceal flying test articles from prying eyes, most notably from satellites above. This also provides a site closer to the runway where personnel can perform last-chance checks and troubleshooting, as well as arming any explosives, while the aircraft remains concealed.”
Based on that, whatever Zeifman photographed is being hidden from prying eyes. The Drive noted that it was unusual for this facility to leave its doors open, and Area 51 doesn’t normally do any test flights over the holidays. At that point, the authors did their best at detailing what it might be.
“To our eye, it looks like a very low-slung dagger-shaped object, similar to the low-observable endcaps and some test articles that have been placed atop radar cross-section (RCS) testing poles at RCS test facilities, although this one has a rise towards its rear, which one could speculate may be a cockpit. So, could this object be a similarly shaped stealthy or high-speed test article? It's possible. If it is, it sits extremely low to the ground.”
How about an educated guess as to what it is?
“If we are to go down the rabbit hole in regards to the general shape that we think we are seeing here, at least based on the very limited photographic evidence provided, the closest thing we can find with regards to an actual known aircraft is the Martin Marietta X-24B lifting body.”
The Drive provides some excellent images of this long-and-pointy craft, which was designed in the 1950s and flew into the 1970s. Could the craft in the hangar be a hypersonic updated replacement for the X-24B? Who knows?
Kudos to Mystery Wire and The Drive, as well as Gabriel Zeifman, for giving us far more information that the government. Will it keep its promise to change in six months? We’ll wait and see.