1. This Memo sets
forth the current intelligence requirements in
the field of Flying Saucer type aircraft.
1. An alleged "Flying
Saucer" type aircraft or object in flight,
approximating the shape of a disc, has been
reported by many observers from widely
scattered places, such as the United States,
Alaska, Canada, Hungary, the Island of Guam,
and Japan. This object has been reported by
many competent observers, including USAF rated
officers. Sightings have been made from the
ground as well as from the air.
2. Commonly reported
features that are very significant and which
may aid in the investigation are as follows:
Relatively flat bottom with extreme
Absence of sound except for an occasional roar
when operating under super performance
Extreme maneuverability and apparent ability
to almost hover.
A plan form approximating that of an oval or
disc with a dome shape on the top surface.
The absence of an exhaust trail except in a
few instances when it was reported to have a
bluish color, like a Diesel exhaust, which
persisted for approximately one hour. Other
reports indicated a brownish smoke trail that
could be the results of a special catalyst or
chemical agent for extra power.
The ability to quickly disappear by high speed
or by complete disintegration.
The ability to suddenly appear without warning
as if from an extremely high altitude.
The size most reported approximated that of a
C-54 or Constellation type aircraft.
The ability to group together very quickly in
a tight formation when more than one aircraft
Evasive action ability indicates possibility
of being manually operated, or possibly by
electronic or remote control devices.
Under certain power conditions, the craft
seems to have the ability to cut a clear path
through clouds -- width of path estimated to
be approximately one-half mile. Only one
incident indicated this phenomenon.
3. The first sightings in
the U.S. were reported around the middle of
May. The last reported sighting took
place in Toronto, Canada, 14 September. The
greatest activity in the U.S. was during the
last week of June and the first week of July.
4. This strange object, or
phenomenon, may be considered, in view of
certain observations, as long-range aircraft
capable of a high rate of climb, high cruising
speed (possibly sub-sonic at all times) and
highly maneuverable and capable of being flown
in very tight formation. For the purpose of
analysis and evaluation of the so-called
"flying saucer" phenomenon, the object sighted
is being assumed to be a manned aircraft, of
Russian origin, and based on the perspective
thinking and actual accomplishments of the
5. There is also a
possibility that the Horten brothers'
perspective thinking may have inspired this
type of aircraft - particularly the
"Parabola", which has a crescent plan form.
Records show that only a glider version was
built of this type aircraft. It is reported to
have been built in Hellegenberg, Germany, but
was destroyed by fire before having ever been
flown. The Horten brothers' latest trend of
perspective thinking was definitely toward
aircraft configurations of low aspect ratio.
The younger brother, Riemar, stated that the
"Parabola" configuration would have the least
induced drag - which is a very significant
statement. The theory supporting this
statement should be obtained if possible.
6. The German High Command
indicated a definite interest in the Horten
type of flying wing and were about to embark
on a rigorous campaign to develop such
aircraft toward the end of the war. A Horten
design, known as the IX, which was designated
as the Go-8-229 and the Go-P-60 (night
fighter) was to be manufactured by the Gotha
Plant. It is reported that a contract for
fifty such aircraft was planned, but only
three or four were built. This plant is now in
the hands of the Russians. A recent report
indicates that the Russians are now planning
to build a fleet of 1,800 Horten VIII (six
engine pusher) type flying wing aircraft. The
wing span is 131 feet. The sweepback angle is
30 degrees. The Russian version is reported to
be jet propelled.
1. Requirements appear
at Inclosure No. 1.
1. To M.A.'s England,
France, Sweden, Finland, USSR, Turkey, Greece,
Iran, China, Norway, Philippines, and to
Commander-in-Chief, Far East, and Commanding
General, United States Air Forces in Europe,
through Commanding General, EUCOM.