Sunday, June 18, 2006

Condon Report includes Heflin Photo re-creation...

This image is from the infamous "Condon Report" on UFOs.

It is a photo taken at the same location as the Heflin photos, but is of a lens cap suspended by a fine thread just outside the vehicle.

Apparently the Condon investigators actually attempted to re-create the photos.

I think they did a pretty good job considering that they didn't have a "model train wheel".

Still, it's a fairly accurate reproduction, and I don't see a suspension thread evident, although admittedly this is a web graphic of a copy of a Polaroid photo...just like the images the current researchers are using.

Oddly, the person who currently holds the actual Heflin photos...former NICAP investigator Ann Druffel (an author of the re-investigation of the case in the '90s)...will apparently not release the photographs for re-analysis. Supposedly she and others plan to re-re-reanalyze the photos.


At any rate, in the re-analysis available here...mention is made of the photo you see above. But while the analysis correctly states that the Heflin photos would likely be highly over-exposed, quoting the report...

Paragraph 1

"It is important to note that the Polaroid camera used to take these photographs used a unidirectional automatic light sensor to set film exposure. The shaded interior of the truck likely led to a low-light reading and inadvertent overexposure of the first three images. Such an overexposure would “wash out” important contrasts in the relatively bright sky but not obliterate them."

...the report claims there IS no suspension thread, stating...

Paragraph 2

"The first important observation that can be made from these enhancements is that no supporting strings or wires are evident in the background sky around the object in any of the photographs (Figures 14 through 16). Since the enlargement and enhancement clearly show the grain in these photographs, further scale-stretch enhancement would be unproductive. Prior claims of a supporting wire in the Heflin Photo 1 were likely due to problems introduced during multiple-generation reproduction and/or handling of intermediate generations."

...However, these two paragraphs are contradictory. If the over-exposure is capable of "washing out" contrast and sky detail, it is certainly capable of washing out a suspension line. Such a line would be far enough away from the camera to be at the scale of the film grain (this is ASA 3000+ film!!) And it could easily be of LOWER contrast than clouds to the background sky, so these two statements clearly contradict one another.

The report later bypasses this paradox to dismiss the Condon recreation seen above, stating...

Paragraph 3

"...our state-of-the-art computer enhancement has failed to reveal any sign of a string or other supporting mechanism, thus verifying NICAP’s original analysis and the analyses of other early researchers who studied the photos. Our own enhanced version of the same area puts to rest William Spaulding’s contention that the Heflin photos were hoaxed by photographing a small model hung on a string. It also renders unacceptable William Hartmann’s “replication” of Photo 3 in the 1969 official report of the Condon Committee (Condon, 1969)."

[Emphasis mine...KK]

Unfortunately, the re-analysis' "enhanced version" does no such thing. The lack of an evident suspension line is explained in their OWN report...see Paragraph 1 above.

This case is beginning to look more and more like a hoax which has been "washed out" by NICAP itself!

I certainly wish Ms. Druffel were willing to allow these photos to be "independently" analyzed using CURRENT "state of the art" analysis.

Might save everyone a lot of time and trouble.

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