MYSTERY WIRE — In April of 2003, something large, dark and silent glided over southeastern Las Vegas, headed in the direction of Nellis Air Force Base.

Cateland White said the huge craft was shaped like a boomerang or triangle.

“And it had no sound. And it was so slow. Nothing stays in the air like that,” White said.

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A drawing Cateland White made showing what she saw in the sky. (KLAS-TV)

The drawing she made is similar to others from eyewitnesses all over the country and in other parts of the world. Large, black floating triangles, often seen in the vicinity of military bases. When White called Nellis to warn the base that something big was coming its way she didn’t exactly get a thank you.

“The man said, I don’t want you to talk about this anymore. You’re not going to talk about this anymore, and you’re going to forget it,” White recalled.

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Cateland White describes what she saw headed in the direction of Nellis Air Force Base. (KLAS-TV)

Did Cateland White get a glimpse of a secret military aircraft? Reports of giant flying triangles have been around for decades. One such object was seen over Russia in the ’70s. Another one was spotted over Belgium in the ’80s. And yet another one was seen over Arizona in the ’90s.

“They’re lined up in a pattern man, there’s geometry behind this,” said one witness as a camera recorded the event.

Whatever this was gliding over Phoenix was first seen the same night flying over Henderson, Nevada, headed east.

Research scientist Dr. Colm Kelleher says the sightings were widespread.

“All over the US, East Coast, West Coast. We have quite a few from Nevada itself,” Kelleher said.

See the full NIDS report

Kelleher spent four years collecting and analyzing reports of flying triangles as part of a study for the Las Vegas-based National Institute for Discovery Science. The NIDS files contain more than 1,000 black triangle reports, including 17 from Nevada. The triangles have been seen in rural areas of the state, but also flying over the Las Vegas Strip.

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Not surprisingly, there have been sightings near classified military bases, including the Tonopah Test Range, and of course, Area 51.

Chuck Clark got a nighttime glimpse of something big and black sitting on a runway at Groom Lake.

Chuck Clark Groom Lake
Chuck Clark, who monitors activity at Area 51, says he saw something on a Groom Lake runway twice as big as a 747. (KLAS-TV)

“It appeared to be at least twice the size of a 747,” Clark said.

But what technology allows something so big to glide so low and slow with no apparent propulsion system?

Some speculate that military may have a modern version of an old technology — airships. A souped-up blimp, capable of carrying large deployments of troops or tanks to remote locations. If the Pentagon doesn’t yet have airships, it certainly wants them. At least three contracts have been awarded for the development of big airships.

Another potential use of an airship platform is one the military wouldn’t want to admit — surveillance of the American public in this age of terrorism.

According to Kelleher, “The speculation that we have heard is maybe these things are actually to do with homeland security. And there is an intense surveillance program that is escalating all the time, particularly in the post 9/11 era.”

Like an aerial vacuum cleaner, a high tech airship could suck up every fax, phone call and email as it passes over.

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Research scientist Dr. Colm Kelleher speaks with George Knapp. (KLAS-TV)

Kelleher’s database shows that in the past two years sightings of giant triangles over major cities have skyrocketed. The fact that the craft fly so openly over cities suggest whoever’s flying them isn’t worried about their existence being known, which is much different from how other previously secret aircraft were tested and deployed.

Whatever they are, the black triangles have piqued public curiosity. When NIDS put its study online, it was swamped with inquiries, most from the aerospace industry.

“Close to 100,000 people downloading this report in a very short time,” Kelleher said. “So there’s a tremendous amount of interest in this topic. And the speculation that we have is, the interest lies in the fact that this is a gray area. Are these aircraft ours are they somebody else’s?”

But if not ours, who’s?

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