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How This Airline Pilot’s UFO Sighting Led To A Bestselling Novel

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Ambush Audiobook Cover - How This Airline Pilot's UFO Sighting Led To A Bestselling Novel

Find out how this airline pilot’s UFO sighting led to a bestselling novel. Did you know I modeled the movements of the strange ship in the first scene of my bestselling sci-fi novel, Ambush, after the flight profile of a UFO I saw above Fort Hood, Texas? In this blog, I’ll lay out exactly what we saw and where. I’ll also tell you what it might have been and how that ties into my novel’s backstory.

This Airline Pilot’s UFO Sighting

I, along with several of my fellow Apache pilots, had the sighting on a dark, predawn morning. At the time, I was in First Cavalry Division’s 1-227th Aviation Regiment, and we had recently returned from the Middle East following Desert Storm. The sighting occurred about an hour before sunrise. We were doing stretching exercises in a parking lot along Fort Hood’s Motor Pool Road, preparing to start the morning’s PT (physical training). The eastern horizon hadn’t even begun to glow, and the moon had already set, so the sky was black, a cloudless, star-filled night.

We were seated in a semicircle oriented toward the base’s massive, live-fire impact area: a miles-wide no man’s land ringed by hundreds of firing ranges for everything from pistols to artillery cannons. The impact area was also where we performed live-fire exercises in our AH-64 Apache Attack Helicopters. Additionally—and this is highly germane to the significance of the sighting—military fighter jets regularly performed maneuvers over the impact area.

It all started when a fellow pilot peered up into the sky and asked, “What is that?” Following his gaze, we all looked up to see what he was talking about. Then we sat mesmerized for the next couple of minutes, watching a point in the sky cut a halting, zigzag pattern across the starfield. The object hung at an extremely high altitude. It glowed brightly, bathed in the light of a sun that hadn’t yet brightened the still-black eastern horizon. If not for its sporadic movements, I would have thought it a satellite of the variety you often see shortly before sunrise or after sunset. At the time, I recall thinking the thing must’ve been at an altitude of at least a hundred thousand feet. Having since flown jets at high altitude at the same time of night, I still believe that estimate accurate.

The object would hang motionlessly against the starfield for a moment and then dart across an appreciable swath of sky. Using Pythagorean theorem (A-squared + B-squared = C-squared), I’ve guesstimated those instantaneous jaunts as miles long. The only way I could describe the speed with which it moved would be to tell you to imagine that you shine the spot of a laser pointer at a wall across the room from you. Flick your wrist a few degrees and snap that red dot to another point on the wall, and you will see the kind of rapid, almost instantaneous movement that we saw the object executing.

After a couple of minutes, the apparent vehicle dropped to a lower altitude and passed out of the sun’s radiance. It disappeared. I exchanged silent looks with my fellow pilots, but none of us commented. Actually, we never spoke of it. Not then. Not later. I have no reason to believe that a report would have been received negatively, but as a military pilot with nothing less than my aviation career on the line, I figured why risk the possibility of being looked askance by a disapproving eye. I imagine it was the same for the others, but I don’t know. As I said, we never talked about it.

Anyone Else Seen Something Like This?

While I never discussed it then, I did, on occasion, discuss it with other pilots and individuals over the intervening years. Twice, I ran into highly intelligent, well-respected individuals who’d had similar sightings. One was the manager of an oil production facility in the Gulf of Mexico, and the other was a Canadian pilot I flew with in Africa. Both had seen a vehicle that moved exactly as I described above.

The oil company manager spoke of having seen an object silently hovering at treetop level. He approached to within a hundred yards of the thing before it darted away so fast its movement formed a blur across his vision. Then it was gone. He added that it had a ring of multicolored light filling the air around its equator (remember this part—there’s a tie-in later in the blog.)

The Canadian pilot’s sighting was not as close. His was more like mine except the movements he saw were even greater than what we witnessed above Fort Hood. He and I remain friends to this day. I’ll be posting a link to this blog on my Facebook Author Page, so I wouldn’t be surprised if he relates his sighting in the comments. 

What Was It?

I never jumped to aliens, and I still don’t believe that’s what we saw. Remember that thing I said about fighter jets above the impact area being germane to the story? Well, here it is. After some thought, I suspected not aliens but us, that the US government had developed a craft capable of maneuvering in a manner that violated physics as we know it. Either through assignment or habit, an Air Force pilot was testing a vehicle at high altitude above Fort Hood’s impact area, unaware that we could see it from ground level due to its being illuminated by the sun’s rays.

How Could Humanity Make That Technological Leap?

I wondered about that for some time. Then I read an article about an obscure German physicist, Burkhard Heim, who had introduced an alternative quantum theory, Heim’s Quantum Theory, or HQT, in the 1950s. He became an instant celebrity (in Germany) when he first presented his work. In the 1960s, Wernher von Braun, the famous German rocket scientist who fathered the United States’ rocket program, aka NASA, approached Heim about his work and asked whether his Saturn rockets were worthwhile.

How Does HQT Tie In?

Burkhard postulated that spinning an extremely powerful magnet in a sufficiently powerful electric field would generate an anti-gravity effect. He also thought it would emit light in the form of particles he called gravitophotons. (Remember the light emanating from the vehicle in the oil company manager’s sighting?) Additionally, Burkhard postulated that the anti-gravity bubble would isolate the vehicle’s inertia, giving the vessel and its occupants the ability to accelerate and stop instantaneously, without being crushed by G-forces. (Sound familiar?) For multiple reasons, his theory was never put to an experimental test. Primarily because the cost, scale, and technologies involved exceeded his abilities.

However, it wasn’t outside our government’s abilities. Here’s an excerpt from the Wikipedia page about Burkhard Heim:

“During the 1955 holiday week of Thanksgiving Day, the New York Herald Tribune, and The Miami Herald carried announcements about the completion of contractual arrangements between Burkhard Heim and Glenn L. Martin Company. Heim was to assist them with their gravity control propulsion project.”

If that name sounds familiar, it should. Glenn L. Martin Company is one of the entities that became Lockheed Martin. That’s the corporation that built practically every top-secret aircraft that ever graced a runway in the Air Force’s secret Groom Lake airbase, popularly known as Area Fifty-One.

How This Airline Pilot’s UFO Sighting Led To A Bestselling Novel

How does this former airline pilot’s UFO sighting tie into Ambush? What if Heim was right and if the scientists at Martin and Lockheed along with those in Los Alamos and Sandia National Laboratories tested his theory? What if the US Government already has a craft that flies using an HQT inspired drive? What if someone made all of this part of the backstory of his novel?

I’ve flown an additional 9000+ hours in helicopters and jets since that dark morning in 1992, but I never again saw anything move like that unidentified (to me) flying object. I still don’t know exactly what we saw in the sky above Fort Hood’s impact area. However, I think the scenario I put forth makes a good backstory for a fun, thought-provoking, science fiction tale.

You be the judge:

Ambush on Amazon

Ambush on Audible

Series Covers - How This Airline Pilot's UFO Sighting Led To A Bestselling Novel

PS: No, It Wasn’t The Autokinetic Effect.

A few people have suggested that we saw a visual illusion, the autokinetic effect. Also referred to as autokinesis, it’s a phenomenon of visual perception in which a stationary, small point of light in an otherwise dark or featureless environment appears to move, but I can tell you with certainty, this was not what we were experiencing. As military pilots, we were fully aware of this visual illusion. It can be particularly dangerous if you’re trying to land a helicopter at night by looking at a single point of light. It will appear to move around and trick you into thinking your aircraft is moving. We are trained to scan and find other points of reference to avoid this. In this case, the background stars were clearly visible. The point of light was moving against them in radical, instantaneous starts and stops.

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We’re Remaking the Sector 64 Audiobooks & Ambush is Ready Now

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We’re Remaking the Sector 64 Audiobooks & Ambush is Ready Now

Hello, my copilots. Popping in to let you know that R.C. Bray and I are remaking the audiobooks for Ambush and Retribution, Sector 64 books one and two. Ambush is available now, and Retribution is coming December 17 (pre-order coming soon). Then we’ll release Amplitude, the third book in the Dimension Space series, in the first quarter of 2020.

That’s three R.C. Bray narrated audiobooks coming in as many months! Set aside a few Audible credits. I’ll post updates here and on my Facebook Page.

Free R. C. Bray Prequel Novella

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While you’re waiting, you can listen to Bob Bray’s excellent performance of First Contact, the audiobook for the Sector 64 prequel novella, for free. Get your copy here.

More Later

I’ll let you know as more details come available. Till then, cheers!

Dean M. Cole

PS: A quick note about why we’re remaking the Sector 64 audiobooks. Ambush and Retribution were previously recorded by a different narrator, Mike Oretgo. He did a great job. However, R.C. Bray did the prequel, and he’ll be doing the future books in the series, so he is redoing books one and two so that the complete series will have one voice.Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2019 Dean Cole

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Plausible Alien First Contact (Part I)

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Backstory For My Award-Winning Sector 64 Series

(Get the Free Ebook and the Free Audiobook for the Series Starter) 

For the backstory of my SECTOR 64 series, I put forth an alien first-contact scenario that my readers find very plausible, some even wondering aloud if this could be our current reality.

Let’s imagine that elsewhere in the galaxy a species elevated itself from the primordial soup a million years ahead of us. Making the most of that thousand-millennia head start, they master physics, achieve faster than light (FTL) travel, and populate thousands of star systems.

Always looking for burgeoning technological societies to bring into the galactic government, they populate the galaxy with a network of detectors designed to watch for certain markers thought to be key indicators, i.e.: unnaturally organized radio waves or light waves (laser beams) and unnatural fission reactions (nuclear detonations). Some, like radio waves, would probably just be annotated for future research. Others, like nuclear detonations, would require a more urgent investigation.

While they’ve mastered FTL travel and communications, their sensors are still limited to detecting occurrences at the speed of light. In other words, if a burgeoning society starts blasting radio waves or nuclear electromagnetic pulses (EMPs) across the cosmos, our curious aliens wouldn’t detect it until the wave traveled at the speed of light to the nearest sensor. Then it could use their FTL sub-space communication network to pass on the news.

To comprehend the logistics involved, we must have a full appreciation of the galaxy’s size. It’s a BIG galaxy. If our curious aliens only wanted to deploy ten million sensors, they would have to disperse them throughout the galaxy on a grid with one-hundred light-year spacing. The Milky Way is 100,000 light-years across and one thousand light-years thick. That means if you could travel across the entire width of the galaxy at the speed of light, the Earth would circle the Sun 100,000 times during your trek. (Note: these are external observations. The hypothetical FTL traveler would experience this time quite differently, but that’s a subject for a future blog.) Even if you could travel at an incredible 100,000 times the speed of light, an Earth year would pass in the time it took you to traverse the galaxy.

When it comes to jaunting about the Milky Way, your FTL travel would have to be SIGNIFICANTLY faster than the speed of light to be of any appreciable use. Scientist and sci-fi writers often employ wormholes due to their hypothetical ability to fold space. Joining two points of space-time, like folding a paper in half, brings two remote locations together, rendering interstellar travel as simple as stepping through a door.

Back to our first contact scenario. Because of the aforementioned galactic scale, our fictional aliens have quite a few (read: ten million) sensors spread throughout the Milky Way. One day, they receive a signal indicating that a nuclear device detonated on a planet in the remote portion of the galaxy identified as SECTOR 64. They discover the signal originated from a medium-sized rocky planet in a solar system only two light-years from the sensor. (That would be very fortuitous, remember our one-hundred light-year spacing.)

So our curious aliens fold space-time and dispatch a scout ship to SECTOR 64. Arriving only a few days after their sensor detected the first nuclear blast, they get to the planet the locals (humans) call Earth in a year the humans have designated as one thousand nine hundred and forty-seven or 1947. Because of the sensor’s two light-year distance from the planet, two Earth years have passed since their original nuclear detonations in 1945.

Our curious alien scouts travel to the only place on the planet where they detect nuclear weapons. It happens to be relatively close to where the first nuclear detonation occurred. The humans call the region New Mexico.

In 1947 only one nuclear-armed bomber squadron existed, the 509th Bomber Group based at an Army Air Corp Base known as Roswell Army Air Field (RAAF).

Yep, you guessed it. That’s near an infamous small town named Roswell, New Mexico.

In a tragic accident, the scout ship is knocked down by a surprisingly powerful thunderstorm.

After a series of nearly calamitous events, the aliens do make first-contact with world leaders of the day.

Click or tap here to read PartII of my Plausible Alien First Contact Scenario, and find out about the decades-long program that our hypothetical galactic government would use to integrate us knuckle draggers into their society. Discover why it would be a secret program, even today, almost seventy years later.

Sound like an interesting backstory for a series?

Now for free, get the prequel novella, Sector 64: First Contact, that kicks off my award-winning apocalyptic series. Available as both a free ebook and a free audiobook (narrated by R.C. Bray—The Martian).

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Plausible Alien First Contact (Part II)

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FacebooktwitterlinkedinrssinstagramFacebooktwitterlinkedinrssinstagramClose-EncountersHow We’d Integrate Into a Hypothetical Galactic Government.

In Part I, I laid out the plausible alien first contact scenario that forms the backstory of my novel, SECTOR 64: Ambush. As promised at the end of that post, I’m back to postulate how things would pan out post-contact.

Given the premise that this alien species/society is extremely advanced and has been at the business of heading the galactic government for unknown millennia, we have to assume that this isn’t their first rodeo. They’ve initiated first contact with hundreds if not thousands of burgeoning societies across the galaxy. Through trial and error, they’ve perfected this process.

So when they stumbled into another race in a backwoods portion of the galaxy, galactic sector number 64, they made first contact. Once the contactees adjusted to the news, the galactic ambassadors briefed them on the two underlying facts of the galactic integration program:

  1. It is a decades-long program designed to streamline your society, governments, and economy for galactic integration.
  2. Secrecy is paramount. Why? The galactic government refined the process through thousands of iterations. During previous transitions, the political, economic, and social implications of premature disclosure regularly created unacceptable hardships on the integrating populations. If everybody knows of the transition, then all the time and energy invested in softening the socio/economic blow will be for naught. In short, disclosure defeats the purpose of a phased integration.

Here are the stipulations the ambassadors named for galactic integration:

  • The world’s governments must conform to galactic standards. In my fictional book, this ties into the gradual worldwide shifts toward an economic and cultural center. Examples include the collapse of the Soviet Union and subsequent Capitalization/Democratization of its member nations, the gradual transition of China away from strict communism, and the social reforms of the West.
  • The phased shift of economies away from a fossil fuel energy base. Our continued and growing fossil fuel dependence highlights the fictional nature of my scenario. Our economy is getting more, not less intertwined in them. In my fictional scenario, the galactic powers instruct Earth governments to push a phased introduction of alternate energy solutions.

Wait, are we talking fiction or reality?

This alien first contact scenario is merely the premise or backstory of my novel; it is not the meat and potatoes of the story.

Click here to read more about SECTOR 64: Ambush.

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Reptilian Aliens? Why Wouldn’t They Be?

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People ask why writers often depict reptilian aliens, sometimes referring to it as cliché. While humans seem predisposed to fear reptiles and regularly equate them with evil (see: Garden of Eden), I think there is a fundamental and practical reason for casting reptiles as a viable intelligent alien species.

The vast majority of Earth’s vertebrate animals sport scales.

The one example we have of life’s diversity—the biosphere we call Earth—demonstrates that hair follicles are the anomaly, not scales. Of all the classes of animal that constitute this planet’s vast wealth of life, only mammals have hair follicles. Species falling within the mammalian class only constitute 5400 of Earth’s 60,000 vertebrates. That’s less than 10%. The percentage falls to 00.3% when you include all 1.5 million known animals.

What if no Earth-changing calamity took out the dinosaurs?

If not for a big ass rock knocking down their evolutionary tree 65 million years ago, dinosaurs would likely still rule this biosphere. Considering we mammals managed to progress from rodents to spacefaring homo sapiens in the intervening 65 million years, it’s interesting to imagine what the dinosaurs might have evolved into had said ‘big ass rock’ not ended their reign.

Now for the fun part, the part where I go off into one of my thought experiments, the part where I ask: ‘What if?’ (And, you probably respond: Well, IF my Aunt had testicles, she’d be my Uncle.)

Thousands of millennia ago, Velociraptors were already hunting in organized parties, a level of intelligence far ahead of the tiny mammals scurrying about their feet.

Imagine those Velociraptors continued to develop and evolve. Hell, I’ll even diminish (but not eliminate) their huge head start over mammals. Let’s suppose it takes this advanced dinosaur species 64 million years to do what base mammals did in 65 million years: produce a spacefaring species.

In other words, what if during the first 64 million of the intervening 65 million years, Velociraptors developed into an intelligent earth-conquering species. Through utilization of superior intellect, opposable thumbs, and tools, they render the planet safe; free of the bigger more threatening species like T-Rex. Who knows, maybe they hunted them into extinction (as we likely did to the wooly mammoth). At the end of those 64 million years, they conquered gravity and put the first dino in space; one even famously referring to their astronauts as ‘Spam in a can.’ (A reference to a popular mammalian meat product.)

Now you say: “Dean, you’re missing a million years. The dinosaur’s evolutionary tree toppled 65 million years ago.”

You’re right. In my hypothetical scenario, our slow-to-develop Velociraptors conquered space a MILLION years ago. I think that is a conservative number. If we instead suppose they maintained their massive evolutionary head start, they might have conquered space tens of millions of years ago.

Where will humans be in a million years?

Back to the real world. If we don’t kill ourselves (and somehow survive Ebola), where will humans be in a million years? Perhaps the reptiles populating a nearby solar system will look up and see scale-free aliens descending on their world. After seeing our hairy heads, they will turn to their science fiction writers and apologize for calling their depictions of hairy aliens cliché.

Enjoyed my writing? Be sure to check out my new novel, SECTOR 64: Ambush.

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