DRAFT OF COLLECTION MEMORANDUM
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:
a. Relatively flat bottom with extreme light-reflecting ability.
b. Absence of sound except for an occasional roar when operating under super performance conditions.
c. Extreme maneuverability and apparent ability to almost hover.
d. A plan form approximating that of an oval or disc with a dome shape on the top surface.
e. 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.
f. The ability to quickly disappear by high speed or by complete disintegration.
g. The ability to suddenly appear without warning as if from an extremely high altitude.
h. The size most reported approximated that of a C-54 or Constellation type aircraft.
i. The ability to group together very quickly in a tight formation when more than one aircraft are together.
j. Evasive action ability indicates possibility of being manually operated, or possibly by electronic or remote control devices.
k. 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 Germans.
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.
Control No. A-1917
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.