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ALSACAT is my comprehensive catalog of UFO sighting reports in Alsace, the region is the North-East of France, whether they are "explained" or "unexplained".

The ALSACAT 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. A general index and thematic sub-catalogs give access to these Alsatian case files.

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Case of Obernai, on August 1, 1996:

Case number:



On August 1, 1966, in northern and eastern France at least, there were a few dozen testimonies generally located around 9:30 p.m., typical of a re-entry into the atmosphere of space debris.


Temporal data:

Date: August 1, 1996
Time: 11:03 p.m.
Duration: ?
First known report date: 1996
Reporting delay: Day, months.

Geographical data:

Department: Bas-Rhin
City: Obernai
Place: ?
Latitude: 48.461
Longitude: 7.489
Uncertainty radius: 3 km.

Witnesses data:

Number of alleged witnesses: ?
Number of known witnesses: ?
Number of named witnesses: ?
Witness(es) ages: ?
Witness(es) types: ?

Ufology data:

Reporting channel: Ufology magazine LDLN.
Type of location: ?
Visibility conditions: Night.
UFO observed: Yes.
UFO arrival observed: ?
UFO departure observed: ?
Entities: No
Photographs: No.
Sketch(s) by witness(es): No.
Sketch(es) approved by witness(es): No.
Witness(es) feelings: ?
Witnesses interpretation: ?


Hynek: NL
ALSACAT: Space junk reentry.



Obernai (Bas-Rhin) 7° 29' E 48° 27' N 22:03C SE vers NO -8° 33' 309° -1° 3' 93° ECS, ECL, EC2 J1, NC1 No description. Displacement in the opposite heading than the supposed atmospheric reentry, at one hour later. R Nr 340 p. 33

Sierentz (Haut-Rhin) 7° 28 E 47° 40' N 22:04C -9° 10' 310° -0° 49' 97° ECS, ECL, EC2 J1, NC1 Round ufo. At ~89 km south of Obernai. This case is eliminated because one cannot affirm that it is different from the observation in Obernai. R Nr 340 p. 33

Study of the flap of August 1st, 1996

This wave may have occurred during an atmospheric re-entry, but this is unconfirmed. The cases studied here are all those for which the time is indicated. Although most cases visually evoke an atmospheric re-entry, the time range of the observations which extends over more than 45 minutes and the inconsistencies in the directions of movement weaken this hypothesis.

The details of the cases can be found in appendix B § XXI.

There are 5 cases (100%) of use of the ECS effect including 1 case of use of the EC2 effect, i.e. 20%.

The commentary on each case is unfortunately very brief, which does not allow us to state with certainty that the appearance of Obernai (Bas-Rhin) is different from that observed in Sierentz (Haut-Rhin), ~89 km further south. However, these 2 cases benefit from the ECS effect combined with the ECL effect, which is exceptional (1 chance out of 170). To avoid counting twice by mistake a case very favorable to our hypothesis, we preferred to eliminate the case of Sierentz.

[Ref. uwb1:] "UFOWEB" WEBSITE:

Obernai 67 48,467 7.483 1996

[Ref. pgs1:] MYSELF:

1996: On August 1 at 11:03 p.m. in Obernai, a sighting occirred according to LDLN.



On May 5, 1996, the Russian automated and unmanned logistics spaceship "Progress M-31" was launched from Baikonur in Kazakhstan by the Roscosmos agency using a Soyuz-U rocket, to bring cargo to the Russian space station MIR, which was done successfully. It was deorbited at 19:44 UTC, then re-entered and burned in the atmosphere on August 1, 1996 until 20:33 UTC i.e. 09:33 p.m. local time in Alsace.

Below: Progress M52, similar to Progress M31.

Progress M52.

The sources are numerous, see for example or

The most complete data I had (below) was on


Unfortunately I have not yet managed to obtain its reentry trajectory.


Space junk reentry.

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
Editeur: Patrick Gross

Changes history:

Version: Create/changed by: Date: Description:
0.1 Patrick Gross ZZZ Creation, [edr1], [uwb1].
1.0 Patrick Gross ZZZ First published.

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