Brazil Aircraft / UFO Encounter - R/V
Rio de Janeiro
May 19, 1986


Time 20:45 Location Rio de Janeiro Sao Paulo
Duration 3 hours

Richard Hall:

Case summary:
Between 21:00 and midnight, the Brazilian integrated military air defense and civilian air traffic control system was flooded with radar UFO sightings and confirmatory reports  by pilots. One of the early pilot witnesses was Ozires  Silva (former president of the Embraer Company), president of Petrobras (State oil conglomerate), in his private plane, along with his companion Alcir Pereira da Silva, an airline pilot. As they were about to land at Sao Jose dos Campos Airport about 21:10, the control tower alerted them to radar-UFO targets. They looked and saw bright red or red-orange lights" ... not at all like stars or planes". Aborting the landing, they attempted to pursue one of the objects, which blinked on and off, appearing in a new location each time as if changing position rapidly. After about 30 minutes, they gave up the chase and landed. By this time the Air Defense / Air Traffic Control Center was on full alert, the radar screens showing numerous unidentified targets. Three F-5E fighter jets were scrambled from Santa Cruz AFB, near Sao Paulo, starting about 22:23. One of the pilots, Capt. Marcio Jordao was aable to approach within 12 miles of an unidentified target, visible to him as a strong, constant light changing colors continuously from white to green. He broke off contact when the object moved away out to sea. Another, Lt Kleber Caldas Marinho, chased a very intense red light, which changed to white, then green, then red again. Running low on fuel, he had to return to base. Both ground and airborne radar were tracking the objects. After the F-5E pilots made visual contact, more jets were scrambled from Anapolis AFB, Goias State, about 22:50. This second flight consisted of three Mirage III fighters equiped with Sidewinders and Martra missiles. One of the pilots, Capt. Armindo Souza Viriato de Freitas, was vectored toward 10-13 unidentified targets at a distance of 20 miles. Radar controllers saw the objects surrounded his plane, six stationed on one side and seven on the other, and later following  his plane at a distance of two miles, but only saw them visually once as they climbed vertically. The Air Force Minister, Brig. Gen. Octavio Moreira Lima, made the events public at a press conference and allowed the pilots and radar officers to submit to news media questioning in Brasilia.

Chronology of the events for the night of May 19, 1986 :
18:30 : Two intense lights visually seen by control tower operators at the San Jose dos Campos Airport.
19:00 : Control towers in Sao Paulo and Brasilia confirmed that they had three primary targets on their screens.
20:00 : Brazilia had detected up to eight targets on its screen.
20:30 : One red-orange object with defined edges was observed with binoculars at the Sao Jose control tower.
21:00 : The Colonel Silva and commander Alcir Pereira flying the Petrobras Xingu jet, on landing aprroach at Sao Jose confirmed visually the luminous objects. The pilot attempted to follow the UFOs for 10 minutes.
21:10 : The Xingu jet was on a landing approach when a large luminous object heads toward the aircraft. The Sao Paulo tower confirmed two echoes (the aircraft and an unknown), on the screens for 15 minutes.
21:20 : Air Control Center in Brasilia informed the Air Defense Command.
21:25 : The Xingu jet pilot made a second landing attempt when the Sao Paulo tower reported another object, sighted and followed by the pilot.
21:30 : Brasilia reported the appearance of new objects. The Xingu pilot made visual contact with three luminous flying low over Petrobras refineries. The pilot finally landed in San Jose dos Campos.
21:40 : Visual sightings of a round object at 320° azimuth.
21:50 : One luminous yellow object surrounded by smaller lights is observed at 110°.
22:23 : A first F-5E Phantom fighter is scrambled from Santa Cruz AFB, State of Rio. (pilot Lt Kleber Caldas Marinho).
22:45 : A second F-5E fighter is scrambled from Santa Cruz AFB (Capt.Brisola Jordao). A first Mirage III (pilot Capt. Armindo Viriato de Freitas), armed with Sidewinder and Matra missiles, is scrambled from Annapolis AFB, State of Goias.
22:55 : Objects detected by Anapolis AFB radar. the Mirage's pilot detected the target on its onboard radar (no visual contact). The pilot chased the object at 850 mph (Mach 1.1), and approached it up to a distance of 6 miles. The object was zigzagging on its radar scope, and suddenly the blip disappeared.
23:00 : A second Mirage III is scrambled from Annapolis AFB.
23:15 : One Phantom F-5E (Lt Marinho) made visual contact with a ball of light and chased it at Mach 1.1, located 12 miles in front of his fighter. The object moved from left to right and began to climb flying over 600 mph. The pilot followed the object up to 200 miles over the Atlantic Ocean.
23:17 : A third Mirage III is scrambled from Annapolis AFB.
23:20 : The pilot of one of the F-5E detected 10 to 13 targets at 20 miles. Ground radar informed him that the objects were closing in. Suddenly, he saw 13 objects behind his fighter 6 on one side and 7 on the other, for several minutes. He maneuvered his aircraft and the objects disappeared.  (from a chonology made by Capt. Basilio Baranoff (member of the Aerospace Technical Center)

AIRCRAFT INFORMATION
Type of Aircraft:  Three F-5E fighters / three Mirage III / one Embraer Xingu Airline or Air Force  Brazilian Air Force / Petrobas (State Oil conglomerate)
Flight origin:  Santa Cruz AFB (for the F-5E) and Annapolis AFB (for the Mirages)
Flight destination
Altitude  10,000 ft (Xingu jet)
Speed 850 mph (Mirage)

UFO INFORMATION
Number      13 to 21
Shape spheres
Size
Color    green, red and white
Altitude (estimation)
Course
Speed (estimation) Mach 1.1 (850 mph / 1320 km/h)

RADAR INFORMATION
Radar type: Ground radar (military air defense and civilian air traffic control radar) / airborne radar
Radar set(s): number several Radar Location several (Sao Jose dos Campos apt.),
Number of target(s): several
Target size
Target altitude
Target speed
Trajectory
Duration

Distance UFO - A/C 12 miles / 2 miles / 6 miles
Weather

Witness(es):
Col. Ozires Silva (private pilot / fromer president of Embraer), Capt Marcio Jordao (F-5E pilot), Lt Kleber Caldas Marinho (F-5E pilot), Capt. Armindo Souza Viriato de Freitas (Mirage III), Commander Alcir Pereira da Silva (airliner pilot), several other pilots, many ground witnesses including military and civilian air traffic controllers)

(From The Uninvited Guests by Richard Hall, 1988)

Source(s):
(01) List of cases from Richard Hall (07) Cases from V-J Ballester Olmos and Joan Plana (Spanish aircat) (317) Uninvited guests, Richard Hall, 1988, pp. 317-319 (339) Project Delta : a study of multiple UFO, Dr R. Haines, 1994 (388) UFO briefing document : the best available evidence, D. Berliner and A. Huneeus (413) Beyond Top secret, T. Good, 1997 (L269) Lumières Dans La Nuit #269 (L283) Lumières Dans La nuit #283