The project card for Capt. Roe's chase gives 2 solutions: a reflection
and the planet Mars. Comments in the body of the report pretty much
rejected a cockpit reflection, Mars is not mentioned at all, and there
is no elaboration concerning the solution (as usual). Mars was near
maximum brightness (a very bright -2.5 magnitude) and seems a reasonable
fit to the azimuths given during the sighting. However, the color of the
light is always described as white, whereas a bright Mars appears rose
From: "Don Ledger" <email@example.com>
Date: Tue, 13 Mar 2012 03:10:58 -0300
Subject: Re: [Current Encounters] June 23, 1954. 10 miles SE of Columbus, Ohio (BBU): AVCAT
The aircraft maneuvered so the likelihood of a planetary object staying fixed-as if flying in formation for example-is remote.
Also when flying at night in 1954 – in a F- 51, any lighting inside the cockpit would be red at low level intensity to protect night vision. The instruments would be lit with red eyebrow lights, fixed post red lights or a projector type light focused on the instrument panel at low intensity. The latter least likely. Some instruments were fitted with internal lighting-but red. Dusky red.
An internal reflection looks doubtful considering the pilots description of the light.
For further edification, all points of the canopy of an F-51 would be on average about 8 inches away from the pilot with the furthest being no more than 18 inches behind his head. The canopy would begin at about shoulder level or a bit below depending on the pilot`s torso length.
I`ve had the pleasure (thrill) of sitting in a stationary P-51 -same thing as the F-51- and it is pretty confined. Same with the Spitfire which is even tighter, at least the earlier Mark models. The Me 109 was perhaps the worst for head clearances all around.