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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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Japan, on May 27, 1945:

Case number:



In 1999, in a catalogue of aircraft - UFO encounters during WWI, US ufologist Jan Aldrich noted a case of May 27, 1945 from 1438Z to 1532Z (01:38 a.m. to 02:32 a.m. local time):

B-29s of the 40th Bomb Group reported about 20 "balls of fire", according to the 40th Bombardment Squadron history.

Several other ufology sources re-published this, but nothing new was learned.


Temporal data:

Date: May 27, 1945
Time: Between 01:38 a.m. and 02:32 a.m.
Duration: ?
First known report date: 1945
Reporting delay: Hours, month.

Geographical data:

Country: Japan

Witnesses data:

Number of alleged witnesses: Several.
Number of known witnesses: ?
Number of named witnesses: 0

Ufology data:

Reporting channel: Military unit history.
Visibility conditions: Night.
UFO observed: Yes.
UFO arrival observed: ?
UFO departure observed: ?
UFO action: ?
Witnesses action: ?
Photographs: No.
Sketch(s) by witness(es): No.
Sketch(es) approved by witness(es): No.
Witness(es) feelings: ?
Witnesses interpretation: ?


Sensors: [X] Visual: Several.
[ ] Airborne radar:
[ ] Directional ground radar:
[ ] Height finder ground radar:
[ ] Photo:
[ ] Film/video:
[ ] EM Effects:
[ ] Failures:
[ ] Damages:
Hynek: NL
Armed / unarmed: Armed, 12 Browning M2 12.7 mm machine guns.
Reliability 1-3: 2
Strangeness 1-3: 1
ACUFO: Possible air-to-air phosphorus bombs.


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

N - 1945.05.27 - 1438Z to 1532Z.

B-29s, 40th Bomb Group, about 20 "balls of fire" sighted by the Group. (40th Bombardment Squadron history.)


1945, May 27


At 2:38 p.m. ZT, B 29 pilots from the 4th [sic] bomber group saw around twenty balls of fire in the sky. (PROJECT ACUFOE, Catalog 1999, Dominique Weinstein)


May 27, 1945


Between 1438 and 1532 (zulu) the pilots of several B-29s from the 40th Bomb group reported the sighting of 20 balls of fire.

Source: Project 1947, Jan Aldrich/ 40th Bombardment Squadron History)


Case 132

May 27, 1945


Between 1438 and 1532 (zulu) the pilots of several B-29s from the 40th Bomb group reported the sighting of 20 balls of fire.

Sources: Project 1947, Jan Aldrich / 40th Bombardment Squadron History)

Aircraft information:

The Boeing B-29 "Superfortress" was the heaviest bomber of the US Army Air Force, used in operations from May 8, 1944 and on. Its maximum speed was 574 km/h.

Its defensive armament was 12 Browning M2 12.7 mm machine guns.




The information is obviously totally insufficient, and one cannot conclude "unidentified" when one remembers that during these missions, often, the balls of fire were the description by the air crews of, for example, the phosphorus bombs - quite ineffective in fact - dropped above them by Japanese planes in an attempt to set fire to the American bombers.

In other cases, it is a question of one or more balls of fire following the planes while performing maneuvers corresponding to the evasive maneuvers of the planes; which then constitutes more interesting reports.


Possible air-to-air phosphorus bombs.

Sources references:

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

File history:


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

Changes history:

Version: Create/changed by: Date: Description:
0.1 Patrick Gross December 31, 2023 Creation, [prt4], [gvo1], [dwn1], [dwn2].
1.0 Patrick Gross December 31, 2023 First published.

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This page was last updated on December 31, 2023.