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ACUFO:

ACUFO is my comprehensive catalog of cases of encounters between aircraft and UFOs, whether they are "explained" or "unexplained".

The ACUFO catalog is made of case files with a case number, summary, quantitative information (date, location, number of witnesses...), classifications, all sources mentioning the case with their references, a discussion of the case in order to evaluate its causes, and a history of the changes made to the file.

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Iwo Jima, Japan, on April 18, 1945:

Case number:

ACUFO-1945-04-18-IWOJIMA-2

Summary:

About 1999, US ufologist Jan Aldrich, on his historicalufology Website Project 1947, noted a previously unknown case near Iwo Jima on April 18, 1945, that occurred at the end of a patrol of the 549th Night Fighter Squadron taking place between 00:22 a.m. and 04:15 a.m.

The ground radar had a contact with a target, and a P-61B night fighter gunner reported a reddish round light. The contact on radar showed two blips with evasive action, they outdistanced the P-61.

Aldrich indicates that he found the case in the 549th Night Fighter squadron Mission Report No 4-28; of which he provided the full text.

Data:

Temporal data:

Date: April 18, 1945
Time: About 04:00 a.m.
Duration: ?
First known report date: April 18, 1945
Reporting delay: Hours.

Geographical data:

Country: Japan
State/Department: Ogasawara
City: Iwo Jima

Witnesses data:

Number of alleged witnesses: 4 or more.
Number of known witnesses: ?
Number of named witnesses: 3

Ufology data:

Reporting channel: Military operations report, Project 1947.
Visibility conditions: Night.
UFO observed: Yes.
UFO arrival observed: ?
UFO departure observed: ?
UFO action: Flew away.
Witnesses action: Attempt intercept.
Photographs: No.
Sketch(s) by witness(es): No.
Sketch(es) approved by witness(es): No.
Witness(es) feelings: ?
Witnesses interpretation: ?

Classifications:

Sensors: [X] Visual: 1
[ ] Airborne radar: Not reported.
[X] Directional ground radar: Yes.
[ ] Height finder ground radar:
[ ] Photo:
[ ] Film/video:
[ ] EM Effects:
[ ] Failures:
[ ] Damages:
Hynek: NL
Armed / unarmed: Armed, 4 Hispano 20 mm cannons, 4 Browning M2 12.7 mm machine guns.
Reliability 1-3: 3
Strangeness 1-3: 1
ACUFO: Possible enemy planes.

Sources:

[Ref. prt1:] JAN ALDRICH - "PROJECT 1947":

CONFIDENTIAL

FROM: COMITRITERRON FIVE FOUR NINE 18 April 1945
TO: COMFITERCOM SEVEN
ATTN: A-2

549TH NIGHT FIGHTER SQUADRON MISSION REPORT NUMBER 4-28

1. A. One (1) P-61-B
B. Unknown

2. A. None
B. None

3. Combat Sortie.

4. PILOT: Lt. F. L. Williams (Laughing Boy Blue 2)
RADAR OBSERVER: Lt. J. H. Richardson
GUNNER: Sgt. S. Forman

TAKE-OFF: 0022 LAND: 0415

On routine patrol until 0300 and then on practice interception when GCI reported possible bogie between Blue 1 and Blue 2 but Blue could not make any contact. A little later GCI gave another vector and possible bogie at Angel 2 and AI contact was made at 7 miles. Bogie made normal target on screen and after chase of 5 minutes lost bogie off starboard side then picked it up at about 4 miles on port side. Held target at about that distance for a few minutes at speed of 200 mph while bogie took mild evasive action. Finally closed to 2.500 feet when bogie faded to starboard and when it was again picked up it was to the port side at about 3 miles and gaining speed. Bogie increased distance and Blue 2 was forced to abandon chase by shortage of gasoline.

5. WEATHER: 6/10 coverage, tops 3,000, base 2,000: visibility good.

Communications: Good

6. None.

7. No ammo: 750 gallons of gasoline expended

8. At close range bogie appeared on scope as two (2) blips. Gunner saw reddish round light and correctly reported its movements to R/O who was following it on scope. GCI's report of "possible bogie" confusing as to whether he meant he was uncertain as to contact or as to indentity of contact.

Archie Beattle
1Lt., Air Corps
Asst. Intelligence Officer

[Ref. prt4:] JAN ALDRICH - "PROJECT 1947":

N - 1945.04.18 - between 0022 and 0415 hours (at end of patrol), near Iwo Jima.

P-61-B, 549th NFS, GCI radar made contact with target. Gunner reported reddish round light. Contact on radar showed two blips with evasive action and out distanced P-61. (549th NFS, Mission Report #4-28)

[Ref. gvo1:] GODELIEVE VAN OVERMEIRE:

1945, April 18

JAPAN, near Iwo Jima

At 0300 hours a P-61 B bomber (from the 549th NFS) was about 20 miles from Iwo Jima when the gunner saw a round yellowish light approaching and losing altitude. There was a CGI radar contact. At 4:15 a.m. it was a reddish light which gave two spots to the radar in evasive actions (PROJECT ACUFOE, Catalog 1999, Dominique Weinstein)

[Ref. dwn1:] DOMINIQUE WEINSTEIN:

April 18, 1945

near lwo Jima, Japan

Between 0022 and 0415, the Ground Control Intercept (GCI) made a radar contact with a target. The gunner of a P-61B (USAAF 549th NFS) sighted one reddish round light. The radar contact showed two blips with evasive action and out distanced the P-61.

Sources: 549 NFS (Night Fighter Squadron), Unit history, Mission report #4-28 / Project 1947 Jan Aldrich / USAF/ ATJC, Project Bluebook report forms / ufo historical Review, Barry Greenwood #2 / Intercept but don't shoot, Renato Vesco p.84

[Ref. dwn2:] DOMINIQUE WEINSTEIN:

Case 122

April 18, 1945

near Iwo Jima, Japan

Between 0022 and 0415, the Ground Control Intercept (GCI) made a radar contact with a target. The gunner of a P-61B (USAAF 549th NFS) sighted one reddish round light. The radar contact showed two blips with evasive action and out distanced the P-61.

Sources: 549 NFS (Night Fighter Squadron), Unit history, Mission report #4-28 / Project 1947 Jan Aldrich / USAF / ATIC, Project Bluebook report forms / ufo historical Revue, Barry Greenwood #2 / Intercept but don't shoot, Renato Vesco p.84

Aircraft information:

The Northrop P-61 "Black Widow" was a high performance american night fighter plane used in WWII.

It was twin-engined, with a maximum speed of 589 km/h, 3,060 km range. The crew was of three men.

It was equipped with a radar and armed with 4 Hispano 20 mm cannons in the fuselage and 4 Browning M2 12.7 mm machine guns in the remotely controlled upper turret.

Carte.

Discussion:

Map.

The 549th Night Fighter Squadron was stationned at South Field, Iwo Jima, from March 14, 1945-5 to February 1946.

There is nothing in the report that would allow to discard that this was a normal intercept mission on enemy night fighter planes.

Evaluation:

Possible enemy planes.

Sources references:

* = Source is available to me.
? = Source I am told about but could not get so far. Help needed.

File history:

Authoring:

Main author: Patrick Gross
Contributors: None
Reviewers: None
Editor: Patrick Gross

Changes history:

Version: Create/changed by: Date: Description:
0.1 Patrick Gross December 27, 2023 Creation, [prt1], [prt4], [gvo1], [dwn1], [dwn2].
1.0 Patrick Gross December 27, 2023 First published.

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This page was last updated on December 27, 2023.