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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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Fukui, Japan, on July 19, 1945:

Case number:



In the XXIst Bomber Command Tactical Mission Report for Mission 277, flown on July 19, 1945, on Fukui, Japan, it is said that a B-29 of the 58th Wing reported a "round white light" that "approached rapidly from behind, grew smaller and then disappeared before any outline could be distinguished."

Though similar or even less strange reports were picked up in the 2000's in various ufology sources, this one was not.


Temporal data:

Date: July 19, 1945
Time: Night.
Duration: ?
First known report date: July 19, 1945
Reporting delay: Hours.

Geographical data:

Country: Japan
State/Department: Fukui
City: Fukui

Witnesses data:

Number of alleged witnesses: 1 to 11
Number of known witnesses: ?
Number of named witnesses: 0

Ufology data:

Reporting channel: Military operations report.
Visibility conditions: Night.
UFO observed: Yes.
UFO arrival observed: Yes.
UFO departure observed: Yes.
UFO action: Approaches from behind.
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: 1 Ó 11.
[ ] 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: 3
Strangeness 1-3: 1
ACUFO: Possible enemy aircraft with searchlight.


[Ref. aaf1:] US ARMY AIR FORCES:

This comes from the XXIst Bomber Command Tactical Mission Report for Mission 277, 19 July 1945, on Fukui.


2. Mission 277, Fukui, 58th Wing:

a. A total of 8 aircraft were seen. Two fighters acted as pacers.

b. A round white light approached 1 B-29 rapidly from behind, grew smaller and then disappeared before any outline could be distinguished.

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 case does not seem strange to me, and I would not have included it in my catalog if it were not for the fact that cases as strange or less strange have indeed been included in ufological sources; there will therefore be no reason for this one to be ignored.

That said, as with some of the other cases, it is possible, although not proven, that the light was a searchlight on an enemy aircraft.

American aviators would of course have interpreted a normal aircraft light as such, but it turns out that sometimes Japanese planes had been equipped additionally with a real searchlight, and it is then logical to find reports of this kind without the interpretation being given immediately.

In other reports, it was estimated that the Japanese had equipped some of their planes with powerful headlights or searchlights in order to designate the B-29 as targets for their fighter planes or their flak.

The report says the light became smaller and then disappeared before any outline could be made out; this happening while the thing would have been approaching from behind. We can think that this apparent reduction in size despite the approach would be due to a heading of the enemy plane which would have deviated towards the side, the searchlight then becoming less and less directly aimed towards the B-29.


Possible enemy aircraft with searchlight.

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 January 16, 2024 Creation, [aaf1].
1.0 Patrick Gross January 16, 2024 First published.

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This page was last updated on January 16, 2024.