Compiled and copyright © 2005 by Keith Basterfield
PO Box 786, North Adelaide, South Australia 5006
Updated 15 May 2005
This catalogue collects, in one place, summaries of reported observations of UFOs by aircraft crews, air traffic controllers or airline passengers within or from Australia. It has been prepared by combing the files of Australian UFO research groups, their magazines and Journals, and the files of the RAAF.
The format for each summary is firstly a catalogue reference number, then date, location and time of event. The case abstract is followed by a reference section. The original source/investigator of the case is presented first. If there is a widely available published version of the event this may also be given. In some cases a group's case reference number may be given. No attempt has been made to provide all published references to a specific case. Where the case was located in RAAF files and the RAAF cited their explanation, this is provided inside [ ].
If the reader requires further information on a particular case they should contact the original source directly.
I would like to acknowledge the work of the large number of Australian UFO researchers, who over the years, have investigated and published details on the reports which are summarised in this catalogue. One or more sources are cited for each report.
1944 Bass Strait
Mr T. R. H. Royal was piloting a Beaufort bomber over Bass Strait when a dark "shadow" appeared alongside and kept pace for eighteen to twenty minutes. The object seemed to have a flickering light, and belched flames from its rear end. It maintained a distance of thirty to fifty meters from the aircraft before accelerating away. During the event all radio and direction finding equipment is said to have malfunctioned.
(The Australian Saucer Record, 1957. 3(1):16.)
The Disclosure Australia Project's researcher in Canberra went to the National Archives and obtained permission to inspect Mr Royal's personal service records. These records indicated that he was with No 1 O.T.U. (Operational Training Unit) in early February 1944. However, there was no record of his name in the Squadron Dairies or any indication that he had flown over Bass Straight. He was a Non-Commissioned Officer Pilot.
The only mention of his name was when he was with No. 8 SQN in September 1945 where he flew his first sortie on the 30 September 1945 on an unarmed reconnaissance mission over the Sepic River area in Papua New Guinea. This information came from the RAAF Historical Records, Russell Offices in Canberra.
(Disclosure Australia Project Newsletter, 12 April 2004)
7 Feb 1951 East Sale Vic 2330hrs 2.5mins 1M Mackenzie
Air to air visual sighting by Flt lt A E Mackenzie of a brilliant light.
(p168 of RAAF file B5758 5/6/Air part 1)
14 Aug 1952 Townsville Qld 1200hrs 1M Scott
Letter from chief test pilot W. Scott C.A.F. reporting that on 14/8/52 while flying to Townsville at 35,000 feet at 1200hrs. He saw a large incandescent light below him. Six to ten smaller lights came from the large light surrounded it then all lights disappeared. Duration one minute.
(RAAF file B5758 5/6/Air part 1)
Ca. Jul 1952 Near Sydney NSW 2300hrs
Captain Bob Jackson of ANA, with more than 8000 flying hours, was flying near Worinora Dam when he suddenly saw a flash of light. He watched an object with an orange tail flash past towards the coast. Air Traffic Control did not have any radar contact with the object. About two minutes later the object re-appeared, circled the aircraft, and then vanished towards the coast.
(Melbourne Sun, Jan 5, 1954.)
Prior to 1953 Canberra ACT
TAA pilot Gordon Savage and First Officer F.E. Hastilow sighted a very powerful bright white light to the east of their aircraft. At fifteen second intervals it changed to red. Savage climbed the plane to 5000 feet for a better look. Savage later believed they had been observing the planet Venus but Hastilow disagreed.
(Australasian Post, Dec 31 1953. p10.)
1953 Mackay Qld
Captain B. L. Jones is reported to have seen an object over Mackay. His report was confirmed by observers at the Mackay control tower. All described the object as having a transparent "glass dome."
(Melbourne Sun, Jan 5 1954)
14 Oct 1953 Essendon Vic 1910hrs 2mins 1M Taylor
Captain Taylor, ANA pilot based at Essendon reports a visual air to air sighting of a moving white light.
(pp165-166 of RAAF file B5758 5/6/Air part 1)
Jul 1954 Lubek Vic 1 min 1M Roberts
Civilian pilot Roberts while flying to Lubeck saw a bright red light that disappeared to the north. No other aircraft reported in the vicinity.
(RAAF file B5758 5/6/Air part 1 p79.)
31 Aug 1954 Goulburn NSW
Lt O'Farrell was flying a Sea Fury aircraft, and noticed a very bright light closing fast from the "1 o'clock" position. The light crossed ahead of him, and continued to a position on his port beam where it appeared to orbit. At the same time he noticed a second and similar light at "nine o'clock" which made a pass ahead of him and then turned in the position where the first light had been sighted. The pilot contacted Nowra radar who confirmed they had 3 echoes on screen. The two bright lights reformed at "nine o'clock" and disappeared on a north-easterly heading.
(1. Australian National Archives file number MP926/1 Control Symbol 3079/101/1 titled Unidentified Objects (Flying Saucers sighted by Navy Pilot over Goulburn.)
2. Chalker, W. (1982). APRO Bulletin 30(10):7.)
12 November 1957 Springwood NSW 0100hrs 5mins 1M Griggs NO
RAAF pilot saw apparent vapour trail at 30 degrees W. Apparently going S to N. Object disappeared towards northern horizon. Cloudless sky. Full Moon present. "A 360 degree turn appeared to have been executed towards the north west." No known aircraft in area.
(Pages 40-43 on digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 1)
12 October 1959 Wonthaggi 1940hrs 1sec 1wit M Jackson NL
Brilliant flash in W sky seen from ANA aircraft on way Launceston to Melbourne. 35 degree elevation decreasing to 25 degrees. Bearing 310 degrees from aircraft, and disappeared at 285 degrees.
(Pages 109-111 on digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 2)
11 November 1959 Rosebud Vic 0220hrs 4mins 1wit McDougall NL
Brilliant blue flash seen by airline pilot on route between Melbourne and Launceston. Left a blue trail to southern horizon which disappeared after 4 minutes.
(Pages 128, 131-132 & 137-141 on digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 2)
26 June 1960 Box Hill South Melbourne Vic 0625hrs 5 secs 1M Wilson NL
Aircraft pilot saw explosion of light with shower of "sparks."
(Pages 70-72 on digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 2)
4 August 1960 Pont Lookout NSW 1046Z 1M James NL
Aircraft pilot reported an object with a bright green head and white tail.
(Page 69 on digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 2)
15 Nov 1960 Cressy Tas
A USAF RB57 aircraft pilot noted an approaching object, whilst he and a navigator were flying at 40,000 feet. Its altitude was estimated as 35,000 feet and its speed as high. Its closing rate was said to be greater than 800 knots. It was seen for five to seven seconds before it was lost to view under the left wing. Its size was estimated as seventy feet in diameter. It had no sharp edges and its was rather fuzzy and undefined.
(1. Pages 44-45 on digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 2
2. Bill Chalker. (1982) APRO Bulletin, 30(11):4-5.)
22 January 1961 NE of Newcastle NSW 1721Z Multi wits NL
Large object seen by crew of Neptune aircraft heading 160 degrees. "Streaked across sky from SSW to NE. Brilliant orange. Broke in two and "leading portion assumed cone shape and accelerated ahead of tail further disintegration took place before object disappeared."
(Page 150 of digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 3. Telex originally classified "Secret.")
6-12 June 1961 Cairns area Qld multi wits
Press clippings re a number of cases. RAAF aircraft sent to investigate UFO seen between 1300-1500hrs 5 June 1961. Pilot saw nothing unusual. Townsville Daily Bulletin copy on file of 6 June 1961 reported a cone shaped object stationary at times, other times "rapid dashes across the sky." To naked eye-dull star-through binoculars cone shaped half surface red. Seen 11.30am. Police saw it at 1255hrs till 1450hrs. Turned at times. Moved quickly at times. Courier Mail 7 June 1961 reported Police watched similar object stationary in sky 6 June 1961 thought it was Venus.
(Pages 135-139 of digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 3. Original file reference BT 5/40/Air (3a) Townsville.)
23 January 1962 East Sale Vic 2115hrs 1M Johnston
Report by pilot of unidentified air traffic in Traffic Zone. "What appeared to be a light aircraft." 2Nm S of his aircraft, heading W at approx. 2000 feet. Report later of a green flare.
(Pages 93-98 of digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 3. Original file reference 5/4/air (5) East Sale. [Probably private aircraft] )
23 September 1962 140NM ESE of Sydney NSW 1130Z 6secs NL
Aircraft crew reported seeing an object travelling S to N over Sydney, at high speed. Bright light turned into cluster of lights and faded.
(Pages 33-24 of digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 3. [RAAF: Meteor shower])
1 September 1964 Enroute Melbourne to Canberra nr Holbrook 1M Kaye DO
First Officer on Ansett flight sighted two silver objects. "One appeared approximately 3000 feet above the aircraft dead ahead, the other much higher at the one o-clock position. Both appeared solid silver ovals, ie no wings." Most likely Viscount and Electra aircraft which were in the area.
(Page 165 on digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 4. Original reference 5/2/1/Air (41) Penrith. [RAAF: Refraction of light])
13 January 1965 41S 167E 0845Z 1M Shannon +others NO
Report of UFOs by Qantas flight 363. Course 275 degrees mag at 20,000 feet. Shortly after sunset. "Single vapour trail appeared to north west travelling east became seven distinct contrails apparently made by large aircraft in loose formation Second pilot also recalls that at approximately longitude 166E this morning on the Sydney to Wellington flight he noticed what he considered as eleven ships in group on his radar screen." RNZAF-radars at Wellington and Ohakea had nothing at height within 15-200mls. Except "angels" S of Wellington speed 100kts. Copy passed to US Air Attaché. Search of the area by aircraft on 14 January revealed nothing, except an unusually large number of high density cloud radar contacts. Up to 10 at a time were obtained at ranges up to 70Nmls.
(Pages 121-122 on digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 4. Telex originally classified "Confidential." [RAAF: Meteor shower])
28 May 1965 Off Bouganville Reef 0325hrs
In the early hours of the morning a DC-6 radioed Townsville control tower that it was being "buzzed" by a UFO. The object was described as spherical in shape, flat on top and the bottom. Exhaust gases were reported coming from the object. It is said to have paced the aircraft for some ten minutes during which the captain took photographs. The object then moved ahead of the plane and disappeared. An official "cover up" is reported to have occurred.
(1. UFO Research Qld.
2. NICAP The UFO Investigator, Jun/Jul 1965 p4.
3. Australian Flying Saucer Review, 3(5):3 -7. 1972.)
22 July 1965 Daley Qld 0918Z 2 wits O'Neill & Salmon DL
Captain B J O'Neill was piloting a Cessna with a student V T Salmon when he saw a stationary light which changed colours red/white/green and cycled through these colours. A check with Brisbane revealed no known traffic. The VHF and HF communications were lost with Brisbane. The light appeared airborne and flying on a similar heading to his aircraft. Sighting finished when the light faded into the distance on W horizon. Contact with Brisbane was again possible from 0945Z.
(Pages 53-55 on digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 4. Original ref: 5/2/1/Air (73). [RAAF: Meteor])
14 May 1966 S of Wonthaggi Vic 0310Z 15mins 1M Price IFO
Ansett pilot saw lights ahead and below his plane. Three objects in an approximate V formation 20-30 degrees below his horizon. Aircraft heading 317 degrees. At first his plane appeared to be overtaking them. Then they seemed to draw ahead of plane. Last five minutes appeared to be overtaking them again. Took on the appearance of two smaller objects in formation with a larger one. As came closer larger object took on the appearance of a large jet aircraft with swept back wings. As plane got closer right-hand smaller object disappeared. Minute later "could see that the remaining two objects were in fact large metal buildings just south of Dandenong."
(pp51-53 of digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 5. Original ref: 5/6/Air (135) Victoria Barracks.)
17 March 1967 100nm Brisbane Qld 0923Z (3-4secs) 1M Blair
Ansett Captain saw light 1- degrees starboard ahead of his aircraft, which was heading 324 degrees mag, and at 25 degrees elevation above cloud horizon. It was a light, with a trail of light. Disappeared below cloud horizon.
(pp194-196 of digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 7. [RAAF: Atmospheric entry of meteor or satellite])
9 August 1967 Talwood Qld 1422hrs 17mins 4 wits incl 1 M Austin DO
Travelling by aircraft sighted what took to be a "large mob of birds" ahead. The "mob" was dense in the middle and strung out in echelon to either side, dark grey in colour and tended to concertina in and out horizontally. Another "mob" was seen 45 degrees to starboard.
(pp170-172 of digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 8. Original ref: DCA(NSW) 63/1789)
1968 Jervis Bay NSW
A man was flying at 20-30,000 feet in the company of three other aircraft, each having two pilots. They sighted an unknown aircraft in their airspace. One of the planes diverted to intercept the unknown. As they got within 8km of it, the object took off at speed, in a southerly direction. All eight pilots had witnessed this object, so they filed a report of the incident. Later other reports were filed regarding similar sightings in the area. They were later informed that the object had been an RAAF Neptune (a plane that does not fly over 10,000 feet) on an exercise.
(UFORQ website: http://www.uforq.asn.au/sightings/sightings1999.html)
1968 Cairns Qld
Someone on an aircraft flying from Cairns to Iron Range is said to have taken a movie film of an object pacing the plane.
(1. Hervey, M. UFOs Over the Southern Hemisphere. Sydney. Horwitz. p121.
2. UFO Research Far North Qld.)
8 March 1968 Yass NSW 2030hrs EST (4-5secs) 1wit Godfrey NL
Pilot reported green light in the sky "falling down."
(Pages 263-265 of digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 Part 9. [Atmospheric entry of meteor])
4 May 1968 Launceston Tas 1M Blyth NL
White light seen by aircraft pilot while landing. Moved E. Lost upon aircraft descent.
(Pages 214-215 of digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 10)
22 August 1968 Zanthus WA 1740hrs 10mins 2M Smith & Gardin
Aircraft VHRTO was flying a charter run between Adelaide and Perth. Was at 8000 feet, 190-195 knots, tracking 270 degrees magnetic. Gardin saw a UFO and woke Smith. Ahead of the aircraft at the same level and 50 degrees to the right of Smith's seat, Smith said:
I saw, a formation of aircraft. In the middle was a large aircraft, and formatted to the right and left and above, were 4 or 5 smaller aircraft. Kalgoorlie DCA advised them there was no traffic in the area. Then radio communications were lost. Main ship split into two sections still maintaining the same level, and the smaller aircraft then flew out left and right. At this time there appeared to be about 6 smaller aircraft taking turns of going out and coming back and formatting in the two halves. Sometimes the two halves joined and split, and the whole cycle continued for 10 minutes. Smaller craft had a constant cigar shape. At 0950 GMT the whole formation joined together as if at a single command. Then departed at a tremendous speed, departed in about 3 or 4 seconds, diminishing in size till out of sight.
Weather was fine, no haze above 5000 feet, 2/8 alto stratus to the south. Immediately after the departure of the objects radio communications resumed.
(1. Pages 218-223 of digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 10. [Not in RAAF summary])
2. Victorian UFO Research Society.
3. Flying Saucer Review 24(5):9-10)
9 September 1968 RAAF Laverton 1628hrs 1min 1m Gref DO
RAAF pilot in a Sabre aircraft saw an object below and to his left. Thought it was a Mirage aircraft, which travelled rapidly and was lost into cloud. Seemed to be just above cloud tops which were at 5000 feet. Pilot checked Melbourne radar and Avalon airfield -- there were no aircraft in the area.
(Pages 20-23 of digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 Part 9. [Refraction of light in canopy])
18 October 1968 Darwin NT 1417Z 7mins RAF aircrew
A RAF Hercules aircraft no. 9651 took off from Darwin. When at 1500 feet, heading 290 degrees, the crew made a visual observation of a light which they took to be another aircraft. This aircraft showed white lights "Presumed to be those from fuselage windows." But did not have any navigation or anti-collision beacons.
This aircraft crossed the path of the Hercules from right to left in front of the Hercules. The crew estimated its height to be 2500 feet. The radar on the Hercules indicated a target at 15 miles range, estimated speed 200 knots, travelling on a heading of 230-250 degrees magnetic. Its estimated size was at least that of the Hercules. No unauthorised aircraft were in the area.
A check revealed that ground radar was not operating at the time. No additional information was gained from DCA, Met, Navy, Customs or ASIO. No unscheduled aircraft landed at Broome, Derby, Port Headland or Wyndham.
In a memo dated 1 Nov 68 Penrith to Dept of Air ref 5/2/7/Air (86) & 5/15/1/Air (26). "The fact that the sighting was made by experienced RAF aircrew and detected by the aircraft's radar leaves very little doubt that an aircraft was in the area. As the aircraft has not been identified, the possibility of the violation of our national airspace cannot be discounted."
(Pages 197-203, 205 of digital copy of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 10. [RAAF: unidentified aircraft])
18 Jan 69 Singapore to Perth 1415z 1M Captain Morris (5-10mins)
Airline Captain reported at 140 deg 0min S and 108 deg 00 E at 35,000 feet. Boeing 707. White yellow light seen descending from 0 deg to - 2 deg. Plane travelling 550kts tracking 157 deg T. Object fell behind plane gradually. Object disappeared "presumably over horizon into the sea."
(Pages 83-86 of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 11)
5 Feb 69 Ferny Creek Vic 2350hrs (2-3mins) 1M Tillotson NL
Airline Pilot. Bright white point source travelling 5deg/min W to E. Soundless. Lost behind hill. Witness thought it was a satellite. [RAAF: Echo 2 satellite]
(Pages 33-36 of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 11)
22 Apr 69 Bass Strait 1919hrs 4secs 1M Rayment NL
Airline pilot. Bright white round balls with 2-3 very small incandescent balls trailing. Lost in mid-air.
(Pages 208-209 of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 11)
5 Jun 69 Launceston Tas 0637EST (3-4secs) 1M Reinke NL
Aircraft pilot was at 16000 feet when he saw a blue light 45 deg E just disappeared. [RAAF: a meteor]
(Pages 17-19 of RAAF file580/1/1 part 12)
August 1969 Adelaide SA Radar only
A final year trainee at Adelaide airport was tracking a Fokker Friendship en route to Kangaroo Island. Near Edithburgh a radar paint appeared twice the size of the Fokker. As the plane approached a smaller paint emerged slowly into a direct collision course. The objects passed by without incident. The smaller paint moved back to the larger paint. In one radar rotation the paint moved 70nm. And within two radar rotations was out of radar range.
(D McNamara "AURA Hotline" 3792 of 27 Dec 2004)
5 Aug 69 18NM NW of Melbourne Vic 0907z 15mins 4wits incl Rothwell NL
40 year old airline pilot and first officer plus 2 hostesses were at 18000 feet and climbing saw a green fluorescent light 30 deg port of aircraft tracking 322 deg M az. Approx 20-30 deg el. 2-3 times size of full Moon. Stationary. Last seen from 10NM E of Bendigo at 18,500 feet same position elevation and azimuth. Gradually faded from view. [RAAF: WRE (Weapons Research Establishment) sodium vapour rocket experiment]
(Pages 101-107 of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 12)
31 Aug 1969 Northern NSW
A RAAF Canberra bomber chased an object reportedly seen by hundreds of people on the ground. The object was described as an "aluminium zeppelin." It was said to have been seen for three hours.
(1. RAAF files.
2. UFO Investigation Centre Newsletter. 1969. No. 26.)
22 Feb 1970 Alice Springs NT 1744hrs
An aircraft crew sighted a bright white light on the ground about sixty five nautical miles south-south-west of Alice Springs. The RAAF concluded it was a natural gas burn off at Palm Valley.
(p180 of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 13)
23 May 1970 200nm SE of Townsville Qld 1810hes 1M Knott NO
An aircraft captain reported what appeared to be a searchlight beam of great intensity, estimated to be in the Alice Springs area. The RAAF concluded it could have been a natural gas burn off.
(pp109-111 &116 of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 13)
29 Jun 70 Sepik River PNG 1720hrs 1M Keog Radar
Pilot of F27 aircraft VH-FNK reported radar observation. On descent from 12,500 feet noted echoes on radar 60 deg green to abeam his plane. Radar scale set at 180nm and echoes appeared to be 60nm from plane and keeping station with him. There were five cigar-shaped objects. With the radar scanner on maximum depression or elevation the echoes disappeared. DCA advised there were no aircraft in the area.
(File ref 69/4393, p53 of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 13. [Electro-meteorological phenomena])
22 Jul 70 40nm SE of Katherine NT 2130hrs (10-12mins) 2M incl Harrington NL
Flying an aircraft tracking 325M at 8,500 feet QNH at 150 knots. Sighted two objects for 2 minutes, one vertically above the other at 270 relative. Same level as his aircraft-colour alternated between red and green. At nearest approach they were at the same level as the plane + or - 1,000 feet, converged and moved towards rear. Moved through 10 deg in 20 secs. There was a stationary phase for 2 mins relative to the plane. Last seen-disappeared 20nm SE Katherine and re-appeared 5nm Katherine for 30 secs. Finally lights went off "as if light switched off." RAAF conclusion on form is : "The cause (or likely cause) of the sighting cannot be determined."
File note: "Mr John Middleton, DCA Katherine, received an earlier report, from four more witnesses, by phone, from a work social club. He reported that the witnesses sounded sober and reliable. He will attempt to get names on 23 Jul 70.
(pp62 & 27-32 of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 13. [RAAF: Aircraft])
16 Nov 70 200 deg 80NM Wewak PNG 1200hrs 1 sec DO
Pilot saw white light 30-45 deg elevation shoot down windscreen bearing 020 deg M azimuth. Smoke trail. Light broke into pieces and went out.
(pp30-32 of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 14)
16 Nov 70 90mls SE of Wewak PNG
Pilot reported object descending rapidly, had tail and disintegrated. RAAF: possible meteor or comet.
(p19 of RAAF 580/1/1 part 14)
27 May 71 Cowes Phillip Island Vic 1801EST (3-5secs) 2m Brooke NL
Captain on Fokker Friendship 13000 feet. Very bright white ball E to W at 30 deg N. Comet-like trail. Dropped to 20 deg.
(Pages 2-7 RAAF file 580/1/1 part 15)
18 Jun 71 Wee Waa NSW 0300hrs NL
Flying aircraft at 200 feet crop dusting and saw two lights in the sky. Pilot flashed his aircraft lights at them. Lights sat off wing on parallel course. One light faded other light lost as dull speck on W horizon.
(Pages 29-35 RAAF file 580/1/1 part 15)
20 Sep 71 NE corner of South Australia en route to Sydney. 2005z 10mins 2M Ballard & Eeetel NO
At 10 deg el. 210 deg az. Appeared an object dense vapour condensation trail. Lost 10 deg elevation 235 deg azimuth. Placed it SW corner of Lake Eyre. RAAF: An "Aero High" launch from Woomera.
20 Sep 71 NE corner of South Australia en route to Sydney. 2005z 10mins 1M Ballard NO.
(p132 & pp138-144 RAAF 580/1/1 part 15)
20 Jun 73. North Carlton Vic 2050hrs 10mins 1M Cane & 4others NL
Pilot of an aircraft Cane saw an orange LITS below his aircraft. The object paralleled the aircraft's track for some 10 mins then appeared to move at right angles to the plane. Noted at 5/6000 feet, below the aircraft. Aircraft speed was 155kts. Object maintained same speed for 10 miles. Last seen 25 miles from Melbourne below the aircraft almost abeam to Port. Lost as aircraft entered cloud. No radar trace. [Cause cannot be determined may have been a "reflection from VH-FNQ finally affected by approaching Sunrise."]
(pp106-110 of RAAF file 580/1/1 part 25)
19 Jun 1973 Mornington Peninsula Vic
An orange light was sighted from an aircraft. It travelled parallel but at a lower altitude for about sixteen kilometres before moving off at right angles. The RAAF concluded it was a reflection of the Sun rising from light aircraft.
(RAAF annual sightings summary 1973)
12 Jan 1975 Albury NSW
Occurrence number 19750294. Occurrence id 91062. 12 Jan 1975. Albury NSW. UFO sighted on radar at 20,000ft in CTA. Not possible to identify.
(FOI request to Department of Transport 2004.)
6 Mar 1975 Near Mount Gambier SA
The flight engineer of a commercial jet flying between Melbourne and Perth sighted a falling green object slightly ahead and to the right of the plane. It looked like a falling flare. Another aircraft five minutes ahead also reported the same object. The same thing was seen by the crew of a Fokker F-27 near Ardrossan, several hundred kilometres away. Investigations revealed they had sighted Cosmos 582 re-entering the atmosphere.
(UFO Research SA)
4 Apr 1975 Cairns Qld
The tower asked an approaching pilot to look for a UFO to the north. A light was seen which mainly appeared stationary, but at times oscillated.
(1. RAAF files.
2. Bill Chalker. (1982). UFO Research Australia Newsletter. 3(4):23.)
30 Aug 1975 Qld
Two crew members of a Neptune aircraft at 3000 feet reported seeing a group of three lights passing in front of them. They travelled horizontally at high speed. The pilot took evasive action to avoid a perceived collision. The observation lasted ten to fifteen seconds.
(1. RAAF files.
2. Bill Chalker. (1982). UFORAN 3(4):23-24)
4 Nov 1976 Near Brisbane Qld 1900hrs
An Air Traffic Controller noticed a stationary light in the sky. The crew of an Electra aircraft then noted a light changing colour green to red to green again, appearing to move up and down. Another pilot saw a red and green object. Brisbane and Eagle Farm radar stations picked up stationary unidentified returns.
(1. RAAF files.
2. Bill Chalker. (1982.) UFORAN 3(4):24)
16 Apr 1977 Near King Island Tas
Occurrence number 197703195. Occurrence id 77512. 16 Apr 1977. Near King island Tas. UFO report from pilot. Passed to RAAF for study. CFT beacon abeam VH-KRY. Cessna 401.
(FOI request to Department of Transport 2004.)
10 Sep 1977 Goondiwindi Qld 0300hrs
A passenger and the pilot of a BPA Trilander flying between Cunnamulla and Brisbane saw what they thought was another aircraft approaching. However a check with Air Traffic Control revealed no traffic in the area. The pilot had to take evasive action as the unknown seemed on a collision course. The UFO passed low over the runway and then moved away to the south-west.
They landed and while refuelling saw it hovering to the south-west. Passengers on the ground had seen the object pass soundlessly at low altitude over the runway.
Half an hour later when they took off the object paced the plane for a while then was lost to sight in the south-east.
9 Dec 1977 Kunanurra NT 1730hrs
Mr Lindsay McKenzie-Smith and his wife were flying in a Cessna 206 at 1675 metres, when they saw an object approaching, below their height. It passed below them and disappeared behind them. It was oval in shape, appeared metallic and seemed to be nine metres long by two to three metres wide and probably one metre thick. It had well defined edges and a dull surface. The object flew sideways just like an aircraft wing.
3 May 1978 Port Augusta SA
A light aircraft pilot heard over his radio that another aircraft had sighted a bright light which had also apparently been picked up on the aircraft's radar. No direct confirmation of the event could be made.
21 Oct 1978 Bass Strait
Twenty year old Frederich Valentich disappeared whilst flying from Melbourne to King Island at 4500 feet. He reported that an unusual object passed by his plane on a number of occasions. Despite a wide ranging search nothing was ever found of the pilot or plane.
(Dept of Transport)
Occurrence number 197802563. Occurrence id 70857. 21 Oct 1978. Near cape Otway Vic. Plt reported UFO then rough running eng. TX ceased-ACFT missing. Cessna 182L.
(FOI request to Department of Transport 2004)
31 Dec 1978 Whyalla SA
A pilot with 32 years experience was flying a Cessna 310. He was over Alford at 8500 feet heading north-west when he sighted an oblong, white light to the east-north-east. He turned into the circuit at Whyalla to land and was unable to continue observing the object.
(UFORFNQ and UFORSA)
22 Sep 1979 Near Banka Banka NT
Occurrence number 197904600. Occurrence id 66734. 22 Sep 1979. near Banka Banka NT. Object in area. Search ACFT found burnt trees and white ash but no object. (Sneaky Martians?) Misc UFO consisting of white light trailing smoke. Sighted by three witnesses. F-27 Plt reported white.
(FOI request to Department of Transport 2004)
19 Oct 1979 Near Broken Hill NSW
Occurrence number 197904657. Occurrence id 66791. 19 Oct 1979. Near Broken Hill NSW. Acft, however no known aircraft in area. Misc F-27 crew sighted UFO whilst on climb out. Flashing white light similar to strobe on high flying Fokker. B.V. F-27 Mk 200.
(FOI request to Department of Transport 2004)
17 Oct 1981 NSW 0200hrs
An air cargo L188 (Electra) aircraft was enroute to Brisbane from Sydney. The crew noted two targets on their radar. These were estimated to be forty nautical miles north-west of the plane. Sydney air traffic control confirmed the targets and advised there was no known traffic in the area. Near Newcastle, the targets vanished from the plane's radar. The total duration of the observation was fifteen minutes.
9 Jun 1985 Mt Newman WA 2000hrs 20 mins
Two pilots flying a Budget Charter Navajo twin engine aircraft had left Mt Newman and climbed to 10,000 feet when they observed a bright orange light approaching from the West at a fast rate of knots. At first they thought it was an aircraft going into Mt Newman, but after checking they realised it was not an aircraft.
After the initial sighting, the object had stopped dead and pulled away from them, dropping to about 2000 feet. The pilots stayed at 10,000 feet. The light stayed with them for 20 minutes before disappearing.
15 Jan 1987 Corryong Vic
A commercial pilot flying a twin-engine Aero Commander from Canberra to Moorabbin was overtaken by a "mystery light" which paced his aircraft until he reached Eildon. The light then shot away from his aircraft, rapidly accelerating towards the east.
(ACUFOS Reports Digest Dec 1987. No. 28)
21 July 1988 near Wycliffe Well NT Near day break
A light aircraft pilot was flying on a clear day with good visibility, at 5500 feet in a S-SW direction. At a position 25n.m. south of Wycliffe Well the pilot saw movement at an angle of 45 to his track. There appeared a dull, silvery frosty, disk/round object. It was travelling quite slowly and he could see an elongated shadow on the ground. The pilot radioed Alice Springs Flight Service and asked if there was any known traffic in the area. At this point he flew over the top of the object, which suddenly accelerated towards a nearby range of hills. It then curved to the right, turned on its side and just vanished on the spot.
(Keith Douglass-Alice Springs)
5 Jun 1989 Dorrigo NSW
Two pilots tracked an object at 4000 km/h on an aircraft's weather radar. The jet cargo aircraft's crew noted a big return on the radar. Over a period of four minutes it travelled from sixty nautical miles ahead, to off their screen in a straight line track.
30 Jan 1994 Brisbane Qld
50km from Brisbane two passengers on Ansett flight AN071 noted a flat, white object, like a cloud in the shape of a dish, which approached the aircraft from the rear. It seemed to be 4-5m in length and 1-2m thick. It was travelling fast and passed under the plane.
(PRA Journal Mar 1994 pp11-15.)
21 Mar 1997, Coolangatta Qld 1340hrs
A passenger in a Sydney to Brisbane flight was passing over Coolangatta on descent to Brisbane when they saw a long, thin, dark grey cloud to the East and out to sea. It was estimated to be 1km long. It then changed shape and divided into segments, becoming more hazy. A bright white light flashed twice from one end of the object. Except for this cloud, which could have been well out to sea, the sky was clear. The witness contacted ATC but was advised there were no aircraft in the vicinity at the time.
(UFORQLD Encounter No 175. Note: QUFON received an almost identical report but dated 4 Apr 1510hrs.)
29 Sep 1997 Jacobs Well Qld Ca2359hrs 1min
Pilot Rob Hill and another person were flying Brisbane to Lismore in a helicopter, when they saw an unusual object, with three lights on it. These lights were evenly spaced along its side. The Pilot is quoted as saying: "It seemed to be flat and then it tilted like an aircraft banking and disappeared." Brisbane ATC advised no other traffic was in the area.
(The Northern Star 3/10/97 pp1&2. My copy courtesy Wendy Murfitt.)
1 Oct 1997 Northern NSW NL
Pilot Wayne Fisher was flying a helicopter, between Brisbane and Lismore at 7000 feet, on a clear night, when the chopper was bathed in white light, which came from above and behind. Two other people were onboard, a Dr Margo Harbison and a Steve Van Bratt. Brisbane Air Traffic Control had no other aircraft in the vicinity.
(The Northern Star 3/10/97 pp1&2. My copy courtesy Wendy Murfitt.)
8 Nov 1998 28km NW Perth Aerodrome WA
Occurrence number 199804923. occurrence id 164236. 8 Nov 1998. 28km NW Perth, Aerodrome. WA. The pilot reported an unidentified flying object, bright red/orange in colour 100ft below and travelling very fast as the aircraft passed 9,000ft. Then object was approximately 2 metres across and the pilot believed that it may have been a model aircraft.
(FOI request to Department of Transport 2004)