1238 01-30-89 12:11 aes
Researchers say photos show UFO GULF BREEZE, Fla. (UPI) _ UFO experts are debating the authenticity of photographs of an eerie cylindrical object glowing in the night sky over the Florida Panhandle town of Gulf Breeze. More than 135 residents in the past 18 months have reported seeing a strange craft hovering in skies over Gulf Breeze, the Tampa Tribune reported Sunday. One resident, asked to be identified only as “Ed,” has produced photographs showing a cylindrical craft ringed with lights and what may be windows. The pictures have sparked a battle between two UFO investigating groups. The Mutual UFO Network, a 20-year-old group of scientists and layman researchers, believes Ed’s pictures are real. The Center for UFO Studies, a non-profit group founded by the late astronomer J. Allen Hynek, does not. The network cites a 90-page study by Navy physicist Bruce Maccabee, who says Ed could not have fabricated such convincing photographs. “A professional magician would have a difficult time doing this,” he said. The center relies on its researchers and on Robert Nathan, of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
He said the photos show glaring inconsistencies typical of double exposures. Mark Rodeghier of the Center for UFO Studies said the case has “deteriorated into a shouting match” between the two groups, and that the network’s endorsement of the pictures biased Maccabee’s study. “Except those intimately connected with the network, 90 percent of serious UFO researchers think (the) Gulf Breeze (case) is a hoax,” Rodeghier said. But residents of the town of 6,000 think they know what they saw. “I was exhilarated,” said Brenda Pollak, a City Council member who claimed to see a large, lighted craft twice in one night last spring over Pensacola Bay. “I can tell you now for every one person who has reported seeing the craft, there are 10 who talk about it but don’t want anyone to know.”