NUFORC Sighting 180458

Occurred: 2024-02-16 21:15 Local
Reported: 2024-02-16 22:59 Pacific
Duration: 90 minutes
No of observers: 3 - Pilot - Aviation Expert

Location: Pittsburgh, PA, USA
Location details: 50NM South of Morgantown (MGW) VOR

Shape: Light
Color: White, red, orange
Estimated Size: Undetermined
Viewed From: Aircraft
Direction from Viewer: 300
Angle of Elevation: 10
Closest Distance: >150nm
Estimated Speed: Mach 2.5
Characteristics: Aircraft nearby

8 Lights Moving in counter clockwise pattern with other lights making passes through and below the formation

I am the captain of a scheduled Part 121 air carrier. The event was witnessed by my First Officer and one Flight Attendant.

En route from New York LGA to Memphis MEM, 50nm South of Morgantown MGW VOR, at 34,000ft, three lights appeared in a triangular formation. They were intermittently appearing and disappearing while moving in a counter clockwise pattern, vertically.

There were also two lights very close together in a right echelon formation making passes through the larger formation at a very high rate of speed, at least Mach 2.5

Various other lights appeared around the formation moving in different directions.

The lights appeared in red, orange, white, and yellow colors, but never changed color. Up to 8 lights were seen at one time.

The lights were on a 300 bearing from our aircraft as we tracked roughly 270 degrees, varying in altitude from 2.5 degrees below the horizon to 10 degrees above the horizon.

We watched these lights continue to behave in such a manner for around 90 minutes, until we descended to a lower altitude.

There were several other aircraft (at least 6) reporting the lights, as far West as Cheyenne Wyoming.

I flew this same route the previous night, departing about one hour later, and did not see any lights on that flight.

This is the 5th time that I have observed lights similar to these, and the 2nd time that my First Officer witnessed them. I was also with him the first time that he witnessed them.


We spoke at length via telephone wiith this pilot, and we found hm to be quite sincere and sober-minded.

Posted 2024-03-13

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