Image Credit: NASA
Stories say it’s up there in the blackness right now, just outside the Earth’s glow. It tumbles slowly and deliberately through the darkness, sweeping smoothly along its unrelenting orbit.
The Earth spins below, largely unaware of its unauthorized parasitic visitor. It is the Black Knight satellite, a mysterious object cirling the Earth, of unknown (and possibly alien) origin — the story says it’s up there right now, and has been for 13,000 years.
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Thermal blanket debris photographed from Endeavor, STS-88. Image courtesy of the Image Science & Analysis Laboratory, NASA Johnson Space Center
Like so many stories of weird phenomena, the Black Knight satellite legend starts with Nicola Tesla. It’s said that he picked up a repeating radio signal in 1899, that he believed was coming from space, and said so publicly at a conference.
In the 1920s, amateur HAM radio operators were able to receive this same signal.
By 1960, both the United States and the Soviet Union had hardware in orbit. But on February 11, 1960, newspapers everywhere reported some alarming news: that somebody else also had something in orbit.
A radar screen, designed by the US Navy to detect enemy spy satellites, had picked something up. It was described as a dark, tumbling object. It wasn’t ours, and it wasn’t the Soviets’ either.
The next day, newspapers reported a bit more information. The mysterious object was orbiting at about 79 degrees off from the equator, not the 90 degrees of a proper polar orbit. Its orbit was also highly eccentric, with an apogee of 1,728 km but a perigee of only 216 km.
The Black Knight, A 13000 Year Old Alien Satellite?
Check out the official NASA images of ”The Black Knight” by visiting these links: