Mariner Signal Spy?
Indianapolis Star, 16 July 1965


Canberra, Australia (AP) --- A mysterious glowing object --- hovering near Canberra Airport while the United States Mariner Space Probe was taking pictures of Mars --- has baffled experts in Canberra. Air traffic controllers and other expert aircraft observers said they spotted the object yesterday.

Six members of the traffic control crew said it hung suspended at about 5,000 feet for 40 minutes. When the sun glinted off of it, it became clearly visible, they said. It disappeared when an Air Force plane was sent out to identify it.

Experts are now wondering if it was coincidence that the object was sighted shortly before nearby Tidninbilla tracking Station was scheduled to pick up Mariner signals. The station had unusual difficulty in locking on to Mariner at the time.

The sighting also came as Goldstone tracking station received irregularities in messages while Mariner was photographing Mars.

This was the fifth reported sighting of a mysterious object recently.

Several persons in Warminster, England, said last Wednesday they saw a fiery object glowing in the southern
sky. In Valensole, France, a farmer said a football shaped object took off from the field.

Last Thursday the Chilean Air Force and the Argentine Navy reported that Chilean, British and Argentine personnel in the Antartic saw a glowing object zip across the sky July 3.

Argentina said the object interfered with instruments measuring magnetic fields.

Several persons saw what they said was a mysterious object flying over the Azores and Portugal last Saturday. Portuguese aeronautical experts said it appeared to be a long balloon made of transparent plastic.