Monday, July 2, 2018

"Roswell Crash Debris" - Claims and More Claims

Frank Kimbler is an Assistant Professor of Earth Science at the New Mexico Military Institute. He also claims to have found some supposed Roswell 'crash debris.'  This year's UFO Festival in Roswell is coming up quite soon, July 5-8.  One of the exhibits being highlighted at the festival is Kimbler's 'crash debris,' on display at the International UFO Museum in Roswell:
His research has resulted in the discovery of more 20 artifacts from the Roswell UFO debris field area, including metallic fragments of possible extraterrestrial origin, 1940 era military metal buttons, a 50-caliber bullet (WW2 era?) and aerial photographic evidence of disturbed ground in and around the famed UFO Crash site... The crash site artifacts were found over a period of 8 years... The artifacts displayed at the UFO Museum include small folded metallic sheets, unusual thin plastic and metallic structural I-beam materials as well as aluminum military buttons from the 1940’s.  
Kimbler's "discoveries" are now starting to turn up in a lot of interesting places. As we will see below.

Kimbler's buttons: "Military," or just buttons?
Tim Printy looked into Kimbler's claims in two articles in his SunLite UFO Webzine. As for the buttons, Printy notes, "The silver buttons have no military markings on them that I saw and could have come from any clothing. Calling them military without evidence is jumping the gun." Indeed. As is stating that they are "from the 1940's" (above).

Where it gets interesting concerns claims that small pieces of metal found near the supposed "crash site" have been tested, and found to have anomalous properties. 

One of Kimbler's samples was tested by an unspecified lab (one reportedly "with multiple certifications") in 2011, and according to Alejandro Rojas of Open Minds, "Test determines Roswell debris is not from Earth.
A piece of Kimbler's 'UFO crash debris'
Kimbler says he almost fell over when he saw the information. The ratios were off, and as he puts it there were only two answers to explain the results, “either the lab made an analytical error or the material is not from Earth.”
However, Jack Brewer of The UFO Trail corresponded with the retired chemical engineer Frank Purcell, who analyzed these reports, and wrote:
Presenting the data in this manner without error bars is deceptive because it suggests the AH-1 sample has non-earthly isotope ratios - the conclusion intended by the thrust of the article.

The data points on the line are presumably from many analyses of many samples by many different laboratories. Properly, error bars, typically of 1 standard deviation, should be shown and would be if this were an article in a scientific journal. Even though we don't have that information, we do have an error analyses for the AH-1 sample, as follows:

Isotope       Abundance - observed    Abundance - natural
MG24         79.1 +/- 0.5                  78.6
MG25         10.1 +/- 0.5                  10.1
Mg26          10.5 +/- 0.5                  11.3

I assume the error estimate of +/- 0.5 represents 1 standard deviation for each analyses. Note that MG24 analyses falls within expectations for natural abundance, i.e., 78.6 to 79.6 where the expected mean is 78.6 . Similarly, Mg25 is at the expected level. MG26, within 1 standard deviation, however, is not at the expected 11.3%, but is estimated to be in a range between 10.0 and 11.0 .  Is this significant? We can't say for sure. We can statistically argue that the measured 10.5 +/- 0.5 really has a mean of 11.3 with a probability of 11% using the normal distribution table. But that 11% probability, although small, assumes perfect knowledge that the true mean is 11.3, and this we don't know because no error estimate is given for the accepted value.

So, Kimbler's isotropic ratios are "anomalous" only if you ignore error bars. Include them, and everything is prosaic. Interestingly, it went unnoticed in 2011 when Rojas wrote, "Bigelow Aerospace showed some interest in helping Kimbler with his analysis, but after spending months with little results, Kimbler had to go elsewhere." That fact has become more significant today.....

A metal fragment taken from the Roswell debris discovered by Frank Kimbler was lost without explanation. Kimbler shipped the fragment via Fedex for further testing at Arizona State University's School of Earth and Space Exploration in Tempe. The package arrived, but Lynda Williams, Ph.D., a research professor, emailed Kimbler that the fragment was not in the package.
“I just found your Fedex in our main office, opened it on the lab bench and found nothing in the plastic holder. Did you forget to put it in?” Dr. Williams wrote. “I'm sorry, but it's just not there!”

Kimbler replied to Dr. Williams the sample of metal was well packaged and he was certain he did not forget to include it in the shipment. “I can assure you it was in the small round box, directly on the top in plain sight in the box,” he wrote.
Perhaps the Men In Black were up to their nefarious tricks? 😉 It also went unnoticed at the time when Brewer wrote:
Kimbler has previous dealings with Hal Puthoff of Earth Tech and Robert Bigelow's BAASS while attempting to obtain quality analysis of the material he located. Many suspect the debris may be linked to the now famous Roswell crash. Kimbler indicated the analysis has been slow and tedious, and his dealing with both Earth Tech and BAASS raised concerns. 
Brewer reminded us of these forgotten nuggets of information in a recent posting. Note well the sentence, "Many suspect the debris may be linked to the now famous Roswell crash." In other words, there is no real reason to believe that this debris had anything to do with whatever came down near Roswell in 1947. It was just scraps of metal Kimbler found in the desert using a metal detector. However, many people take that association as a given.

Frank Kimbler, who will be speaking at the
Roswell UFO Festival this year.
Kimbler's samples were also featured in 2014 on a Smithsonian Channel TV show,   UFOs Declassified. Physicist Dave Thomas of New Mexicans for Science and Reason participated in the show. He wrote on his Facebook page that a scan of Kimbler's sample at New Mexico Institute of Technology using a Scanning Electron Microsccope revealed it was mostly aluminum, with small amounts of manganese, iron, and magnesium. Nothing particularly extraterrestrial about that.

In recent years, Jacques Vallee has been talking a good bit about supposed UFO debris samples, without being too specific about where they come from, or who analyzed them. (This seems quite a departure from Vallee's previous hypotheses about UFOs being a 'control system' for humanity.) These samples reportedly also had anomalous isotopic ratios. Suspecting that the same supposed "Roswell debris" might just be passing from one researcher to another, blogger Jason Colavito contacted Gary Nolan, one of the researchers associated with Tom DeLonge's venture To The Stars, who confirmed
Jacques and I have worked together on many projects. Including his recent discussions on the isotope ratios. Jacques previously worked with Peter Sturrock (Emeritus Professor of Astrophysics here at Stanford) a couple of decades ago on composition of materials from UAP [UFO].
So, To The Stars' analysis of supposed UFO crash debris is mixed up with Vallee's.

Dr. Hal Puthoff, formerly of Targ & Puthoff/Uri Geller fame, is one of To The Stars' principal researchers.  On June 8 Puthoff spoke at the conference of the Society for Scientific Exploration in Las Vegas, held jointly with the International Remote Viewing Association. (Puthoff is also a pioneering researcher in "remote viewing," the supposed technique for using one's psychic powers to peek into places that cannot otherwise be seen). Puthoff told about analyzing a metal sample that he described as
a multilayered bismuth and magnesium sample. Bismuth layers less than a human hair. Magnesium samples about ten-times the size of a human hair. Supposedly picked up in the crash retrieval of an Advanced Aerospace Vehicle. It looks like it’s been in a crash.
A final piece of evidence suggests that the Bigelow’s men are overstating their claims. In 1996, Linda Moulton Howe commissioned technologist Nicholas A. Reiter, himself an anti-gravity researcher and a  fringe believer in UFOs and paranormal things, to investigate the “Roswell sample”—i.e. the same piece that Puthoff is now promoting. Reiter determined that it was earthly and, while unusual, was not impossible. In 2001, he updated his findings with this information: “The combination of bismuth and magnesium had eluded us for four years. But then one day, we found a reference to an obscure industrial process used in the refinement of lead. The process, called the Betterton-Krohl Process, uses molten magnesium floated over the surface of liquid lead. The magnesium sucks up, or pulls bismuth impurities out of the lead! Often, the magnesium is used over and over again…” Presumably, this is the same process that was patented in 1938, producing a thin crust of layered magnesium and bismuth, which is removed from the lead. When the magnesium is reused, new layers would form. (The Fortean Times endorsed this solution in 2016.) Remember that Vallée’s sample was specifically identified as slag—i.e., industrial debris. Howe refused to publicize Reiter’s results, preferring to string along the “alien” mystery. Of course, we would need a known sample made by the industrial process to test the “alien” versions against, but the distribution of the slag in industrialized nations (Vallée claims examples from France, Argentina, and America, for example) id s point in favor of this solution.

The new information here is that To the Stars seems to be collecting more of the same industrial waste that Linda Moulton Howe has been cycling through the UFO circuit for 22 years. 
As for Kimbler's claims that the area where his slag aluminum was found was "changed" as seen in aerial and satellite photos, and shows features not previously there, Tim Printy looked into this. He found evidence that it was due to a burn, either accidental or controlled. Such burns are extremely common in arid regions of the southwest.
The attached images revealed that the feature was visible in the area of the accepted location from the Brazel debris field but first appeared in 1998! ... Kimbler seems to think this controlled burn was done to hide the evidence of the crash. He only suggested this in the Open Minds interview but was more confident about it in the “Chasing UFOs” episode. He stated that he thought it was meant to either hide the material, melt it, or alter its properties.
In any case, no analysis of any sample means anything unless you can conincingly link it to a supposed UFO crash. Unfortunatley,  the identification of any piece of metal or debris found in the desert with a supposed UFO crash is highly speculative. Especially since there have a number of different, competing claims for crash sites.  UFOlogists apparently have solved this problem by suggesting that all of the alleged crash sites are valid.  That UFO apparently got banged up pretty badly, and left debris all over the place.
The first and most famous site is commonly called the “debris field”. It is located near Corona, NM. This is where the saucer possibly ricocheted off the ground (causing a long furrow) and spreading lots of debris over an area several times the size of a football field. This is where the purported memory metal, aluminum-like foil, and light structural shapes were found. This site was discovered by ranch manager Brazel.

The second site is where what is described as the escape pod came down. It is usually placed on the same ranch, but several miles away. The third site is where the remainder of the craft (the largest portion) is said to have crashed. This is supposedly where firemen from Roswell were called out to, and who were instructed to stay away by the military. Different accounts have bodies and a live alien found at either or both of the second and third sites.

The fourth site is much further west than these three, out on the Plains of San Augustin, where an identical craft reportedly came down and additional aliens were found (one or two dead, one dying, and one administering aid to the dying one). Witnessed by eight or more people, they were supposedly chased off and threatened by the military crash recovery team.

Map on showing some of  the places near Roswell where UFO debris supposedely ended up.

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