Thursday, December 31, 2020


"War begets war. Destruction begets destruction. On Earth, a century ago, in the year 2020 they outlawed our books. Oh, what a horrible thing--to destroy our literary creations that way! It summoned us out of--what? Death? The Beyond? I don't like abstract things. I don't know. I only know that our worlds and our creations called us and we tried to save them, and the only saving thing we could do was wait out the century here on Mars, hoping Earth might overweight itself with these scientists and their doubtings; but now they're coming to clean us out of here, us and our dark things, and all the alchemists, witches, vampires, and were-things that, one by one, retreated across space as science made inroads through every country on Earth and finally left no alternative at all but exodus."

--Edgar Allan Poe speaking to the ghosts of Charles Dickens and Ambrose Bierce in Ray Bradbury's short story "The Exiles" (collected in THE ILLUSTRATED MAN, 1951) 

Aliens, Lizard People, and the Nashville Bomber

From Tamar Lapin's 12-29-20 NEW YORK POST article entitled "Nashville Bomber Anthony Quinn Warner Reportedly Believed in ‘Lizard People’":

Authorities are looking into evidence that Nashville RV bomber Anthony Quinn Warner spent time hunting for aliens and was interested in “lizard people,” ABC News reported.

Law enforcement sources told the outlet that investigators found some of Warner’s writings containing ramblings about various conspiracy theories.

Some of the notes were reportedly about the lizard or reptilian conspiracy — the idea that shape-shifting lizard creatures take on human form in an attempt at world domination.

Authorities believe the 63-year-old loner also spent time hunting for alien life forms in a nearby state park, the outlet reported.

It’s unclear if any of these beliefs or behaviors are connected in any way to the Christmas morning suicide blast.

To read the entire article, click HERE.

Wednesday, December 30, 2020

MARKETWATCH: "Police Visited Home of Suspected Nashville Suicide Bomber a Year Ago After Tip from Girlfriend"

From MARKETWATCH'S 12-30-20 article entitled "Police Visited Home of Suspected Nashville Suicide Bomber a Year Ago After Tip from Girlfriend":

More than a year before Anthony Warner detonated a bomb in downtown Nashville on Christmas, officers visited his home after his girlfriend told police that he was building bombs in an RV trailer at his residence, according to documents obtained by the Associated Press. But they were unable to make contact with him, or see inside his RV.

Officers were called to Pamela Perry’s home in Nashville on Aug. 21, 2019, after getting a report from her attorney that she was making suicidal threats while sitting on her front porch with firearms, the Metropolitan Nashville Police Department said Tuesday in an emailed statement. A police report said Raymond Throckmorton, the attorney, told officers that day that he also represented Warner.

When officers arrived at Perry’s home, police said she had two unloaded pistols sitting next to her on the porch. She told them those guns belonged to “Tony Warner,” police said, and she did not want them in the house any longer. Perry, then 62, was then transported for a psychological evaluation after speaking to mental health professionals on the phone.

Throckmorton told the Tennessean that Perry had fears about her safety, and thought Warner may harm her. The attorney was also at the scene that day, and told officers Warner “frequently talks about the military and bomb making,” the police report said. Warner “knows what he is doing and is capable of making a bomb,” Throckmorton said to responding officers.

Police then went to Warner’s home, located about 1.5 miles from Perry’s home, but he didn’t answer the door when they knocked several times.

They saw the RV in the backyard, the report said, but the yard was fenced off and officers couldn’t see inside the vehicle.

To read the entire article, click HERE.

"Granddaughter of Manson Family Victim Rosemary LaBianca Is Brutally Stabbed to Death..."

From Ryan Parry and Hugo Daniel's 12-9-20 DAILY MAIL article entitled "Granddaughter of Manson Family Victim Rosemary LaBianca Is Brutally Stabbed to Death and Found 'in a Pool of Blood in Her Bed' in a Chilling Repeat of the Infamous Murders 51 Years Ago":

The granddaughter of Manson family victim Rosemary LaBianca has been brutally stabbed to death in a chilling repeat of the infamous murders 51 years ago, can reveal.

Ariana Wolk, daughter of Rosemary's daughter Suzan LaBerge, was found murdered in a Denver, Colorado apartment back in July.

Single mom-of-one Ariana, 40, was discovered 'in a pool of blood in her bed' after being stabbed multiple times in the neck, Denver District Attorney's office said.

Jose Sandoval-Romero, 24, has been charged with her murder, apparently confessing to the crime when cops caught him four days later.

The DA's office said: 'During his interview with law enforcement, Sandoval-Romero admitted that he had stabbed Ms. Wolk, fled the scene, and discarded his bloody clothes before fleeing to Colorado Springs.'

According to an affidavit for Sandoval-Romero's arrest released by the DA a post-mortem found Ariana had 'several stab wounds to her neck and apparent defensive stab wounds to her arms and hands' indicating she put up a fight against her attacker.

The brutal murder is chillingly similar to that of Ariana's grandmother Rosemary who was killed with her husband Leno in their Los Feliz, Los Angeles home on August 10, 1969 by Charles Manson and three of his followers.

To read the entire article, click HERE

On a related note... in Chapter One of my first book, Cryptoscatology: Conspiracy Theory as Art Form, I wrote the following about the late Mae Brussell (1922-1988), sometimes referred to as "the Queen of Conspiracies":

Brussell’s skills as a political researcher were beyond reproach. Brussell wrote about Watergate before The Washington Post.[1] I refer interested researchers to the compilation The Essential Mae Brussell, released by Feral House in 2014, if you wish to judge Brussell’s reportage for yourself. As famed investigative journalist Seymour Hersh once said of Brussell, “She’s crazy, but she’s right.”

[1] Indeed, she did so in the pages of Paul Krassner’s underground magazine The Realist.

If you would like to know more about Brussell and her groundbreaking work, I recommend listening to a pair of her radio broadcasts about Charles Manson and his followers:

MAE BRUSSELL (10-13-1971)

MAE BRUSSELL (11-17-1971)

Tuesday, December 29, 2020

Rockford Mass Shooting

From WEAU's 12-28-20 report entitled "Soldier Charged in Rockford Mass Shooting Denied Bond; Victims Identified":

An attorney for a U.S. Army special forces sergeant arrested in an apparently random shooting at a Rockford [Illinois] bowling alley that left three dead has told an initial hearing that her client may suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder.

Duke Webb appeared in a Winnebago County courtroom Monday. He faces three counts of murder and three counts of first-degree attempted murder in the shooting at Don Carter Lanes on Saturday. His lawyer also told the court Webb appeared to have issues with memory loss and that he’ll undergo mental health evaluations.

A judge denied Webb bond and set his arraignment for Feb. 16.

The criminal complaint filed against Webb provided more details about the shooting and identified the three men he is accused of killing. The victims were identified as:

  • Thomas Furseth, 65
  • Dennis Steinhoff, 73
  • Jerome Woodfork, 69

According to the complaint, Rockford police were alerted to an active shooter situation at the bowling alley shortly before 7 p.m. and when they arrived a witness told investigators he heard multiple gunshots, identifying Webb as the shooter [...].

Webb joined the Army in July 2008 and is currently serving as a Special Forces Assistance Operations and Intelligence Sergeant. He previously was a Special Forces Engineer Sergeant and Parachute Rigger. Webb deployed to Afghanistan from Aug. 2009 to Dec. 2009, Oct. 2013 to April 2014, Oct. 2014 to April 2015, and Jan. 2020 to July 2020, according to U.S. Army Public Affairs.

“The alleged actions of Sgt. 1st Class Duke Webb are abhorrent and are absolutely not representative of the Special Forces Regiment. The vast majority of men and women Green Berets live up to their storied reputation and earn their beret every day. The actions described in reports are shocking and completely out of character with Webb’s 12 years of honorable service. The Rockford Police Department has our complete cooperation. Our heavy hearts and prayers are with the families affected,” MG John W. Brennan Commander of 1st Special Forces Command Airborne said.

To read the entire report, click HERE

Click HERE to read Loren Coleman's 12-1-20 TWILIGHT LANGUAGE blog post about "Pandemic Mass Shootings."

Nashville Bomber

From Ben Ashford's 12-27-20 DAILY MAIL article entitled "Nashville Bomber Anthony Warner 'Targeted AT&T After His Father Who Worked for Subsidiary Died of Dementia - Fueling His Conspiracy Theory That 5G Is Killing People'":

Nashville bomber Anthony Quinn Warner hoped he would be ‘hailed a hero’ for targeting AT&T because he believed 5G cellular technology was killing people, can exclusively reveal.

The 63-year-old computer tech - who died in the suspected suicide blast but was identified Sunday from DNA found in his mangled RV - was ‘heavily into conspiracy theories’, according to a source close to the investigation.

Various baseless theories have circulated since the lightning-fast 5G network was introduced, some claiming it’s a tool to spy on Americans, others speculating that it has fueled the spread of COVID-19.  

Warner was named by the FBI on Sunday as the perpetrator of the Christmas Day bombing, after DNA showed he perished in the attack carried out with an RV rigged to explode.

To read Ashford's entire article, click HERE.

Meanwhile, cryptozoologist Loren Coleman attempts to analyze the "hidden meanings and synchromystic connections" of the Nashville Bombing in his 12-25-20 TWILIGHT LANGUAGE blog post entitled "Explosion in Nashville: Down The Rabbit Hole On Christmas Morn."

Trump Pardons Blackwater Guards

From Laurel Wamsley's 12-23-20 NPR report entitled "Shock And Dismay After Trump Pardons Blackwater Guards Who Killed 14 Iraqi Civilians":

Among the pardons made by President Trump this week, the pardon of four former guards for Blackwater was regarded by some as particularly galling.

Nicholas Slatten, Paul Slough, Evan Liberty and Dustin Heard were convicted six years ago of killing 14 Iraqi civilians and wounding 17 others. Witnesses described how the American men ambushed the civilians unprovoked, firing on Baghdad's Nisour Square with heavy gunfire and grenade launchers.

The massacre took place in 2007, when the four were working as guards for Blackwater, a private military contractor, on an assignment in Baghdad. They claimed they were fired on, but prosecutors said the Blackwater guards opened fire first. Slatten, whom prosecutors said started the shooting, was sentenced to life in prison.

Hassan Salman is among the Iraqis shot during the ambush. He told NPR on Wednesday that he was shocked by Trump's pardons — he himself had made trips to the U.S. to give testimony in the proceedings against the four.

"Today we were surprised that the American president issued a decision to pardon these criminals, murderers and thugs," Salman said, speaking from Baghdad. "I'm really shocked. ... The American judiciary is fair and equitable. I had never imagined that Trump or any other politician would affect American justice."

To read Wamsley's entire report, click HERE.

QAnon Influencers Beg for Dictatorship

From Ben Collins' 12-22-20 report entitled "As Trump Meets with QAnon Influencers, the Conspiracy's Adherents Beg for Dictatorship":

On Friday, President Donald Trump met with current and former advisers in the Oval Office, including retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, and a person familiar with the meeting said Flynn advocated an extreme way to overturn the November election: declare martial law.

The idea is hardly limited to Flynn, Trump's disgraced former national security adviser. It has also been embraced by the QAnon movement and some members of the Republican Party.

With Trump's days in office dwindling, QAnon influencers have become increasingly restless and militant, urging him to #crosstherubicon, a reference to Julius Caesar's crossing the Rubicon river after the Roman Senate explicitly told him not to, effectively kick-starting the Roman civil war and Caesar's dictatorship.

Arizona Republican Party Chairwoman Kelli Ward tweeted the hashtag Sunday.

"Mr. President @realDonaldTrump - we are with you in #Arizona. We are working every avenue to stop this coup & to stop our Republic from crumbing," she tweeted. "Patriots are united. Those who are against us are exposing themselves. #Liberty & #freedom are on the line. #CrossTheRubicon @GenFlynn."

Trump tweeted Sunday that reports of a discussion about martial law were "knowingly bad reporting."

"Martial law = Fake news," he wrote.

But that hasn't dampened the enthusiasm for military rule from the QAnon community, which sees hope in the fact that some of their central influencers are close to Trump.

Sidney Powell, a lawyer who has filed a series of suits she dubbed "the Kraken," which have failed to overturn the results of the election in several states, was part of the meeting. She has repeatedly pushed QAnon theories, and she has used the hashtag #TheStormIsComing, a QAnon phrase that refers to the extrajudicial roundup of Democrats at the heart of the theory.

Flynn, a hero in the mythology of the QAnon conspiracy theory who once took a QAnon "oath" on video, has said in appearances on the conservative media channel Newsmax that Trump should use the military to "rerun" the election.

The "Rubicon" hashtag wasn't new to QAnon followers, who have repeatedly tweeted the phrase in the last week. But the hashtag had minimal success last week until Ron Watkins, who previously ran the message board and QAnon hub 8kun, posted a series of viral tweets Thursday and Friday about Caesar and crossing the Rubicon.

To read the entire report, click HERE.

Monday, December 28, 2020

ATLANTIC: "Facebook Is a Doomsday Machine"

From Adrienne LaFrance's 12-15-20 ATLANTIC article entitled "Facebook Is a Doomsday Machine":

People tend to complain about Facebook as if something recently curdled. There’s a notion that the social web was once useful, or at least that it could have been good, if only we had pulled a few levers: some moderation and fact-checking here, a bit of regulation there, perhaps a federal antitrust lawsuit. But that’s far too sunny and shortsighted a view. Today’s social networks, Facebook chief among them, were built to encourage the things that make them so harmful. It is in their very architecture [...]. 

The social web is doing exactly what it was built for. Facebook does not exist to seek truth and report it, or to improve civic health, or to hold the powerful to account, or to represent the interests of its users, though these phenomena may be occasional by-products of its existence. The company’s early mission was to “give people the power to share and make the world more open and connected.” Instead, it took the concept of “community” and sapped it of all moral meaning. The rise of QAnon, for example, is one of the social web’s logical conclusions. That’s because Facebook—along with Google and YouTube—is perfect for amplifying and spreading disinformation at lightning speed to global audiences. Facebook is an agent of government propaganda, targeted harassment, terrorist recruitment, emotional manipulation, and genocide—a world-historic weapon that lives not underground, but in a Disneyland-inspired campus in Menlo Park, California [...].

I recalled Clinton’s warning a few weeks ago, when Zuckerberg defended the decision not to suspend Steve Bannon from Facebook after he argued, in essence, for the beheading of two senior U.S. officials, the infectious-disease doctor Anthony Fauci and FBI Director Christopher Wray. The episode got me thinking about a question that’s unanswerable but that I keep asking people anyway: How much real-world violence would never have happened if Facebook didn’t exist? One of the people I’ve asked is Joshua Geltzer, a former White House counterterrorism official who is now teaching at Georgetown Law. In counterterrorism circles, he told me, people are fond of pointing out how good the United States has been at keeping terrorists out since 9/11. That’s wrong, he said. In fact, “terrorists are entering every single day, every single hour, every single minute” through Facebook.

The website that’s perhaps best known for encouraging mass violence is the image board 4chan—which was followed by 8chan, which then became 8kun. These boards are infamous for being the sites where multiple mass-shooting suspects have shared manifestos before homicide sprees. The few people who are willing to defend these sites unconditionally do so from a position of free-speech absolutism. That argument is worthy of consideration. But there’s something architectural about the site that merits attention, too: There are no algorithms on 8kun, only a community of users who post what they want. People use 8kun to publish abhorrent ideas, but at least the community isn’t pretending to be something it’s not. The biggest social platforms claim to be similarly neutral and pro–free speech when in fact no two people see the same feed. Algorithmically tweaked environments feed on user data and manipulate user experience, and not ultimately for the purpose of serving the user. Evidence of real-world violence can be easily traced back to both Facebook and 8kun. But 8kun doesn’t manipulate its users or the informational environment they’re in. Both sites are harmful. But Facebook might actually be worse for humanity.

“What a dreadful set of choices when you frame it that way,” Geltzer told me when I put this question to him in another conversation. “The idea of a free-for-all sounds really bad until you see what the purportedly moderated and curated set of platforms is yielding … It may not be blood onscreen, but it can really do a lot of damage.”

In previous eras, U.S. officials could at least study, say, Nazi propaganda during World War II, and fully grasp what the Nazis wanted people to believe. Today, “it’s not a filter bubble; it’s a filter shroud,” Geltzer said. “I don’t even know what others with personalized experiences are seeing.”

To read the rest of the article, click HERE.

Marshall McLuhan in 1970

“The most benevolent and democratic regime quickly becomes a ‘police state’ in an electric environment. Everybody is automatically put in a data bank.” 

--Marshall McLuhan, Explorations, 24 April 1970

Sunday, December 27, 2020

Saturday, December 26, 2020

Dogman Encounters

Recommended Listening:

Dogman Encounters Episode 335 (12-4-20)

"Jay was in the Joshua Tree National Park, late one night, 10 years ago, when he found himself in a very unusual situation he never would have expected to find himself in. What could be worse than encountering a Dogman, when you're alone, in the middle of nowhere, late at night? That's easy. Encountering 10 or more of them!"

NEW YORK POST: "NYC UFO sightings in 2020 are up 283% from 2018"

From Dean Balsamini's 12-12-20 NEW YORK POST article entitled "NYC UFO sightings in 2020 are up 283% from 2018":

"UFO sightings across the city are up 31% from last year — 46, compared with 35 — and an eye-popping 283% from 2018’s measly dozen, according to the National UFO Reporting Center [...].

Two of the more memorable intergalactic incidents happened in the summertime, on Staten Island and in the Bronx.

In the wee hours of July 21, an Islander spotted — and stared at — at an “oval” aircraft that “looked and sounded like a helicopter. Then, the mysterious flying machine “sent a surge of heat/radiation through my body!”

The Islander “honestly thought it was the government putting something into the air with everything going on during these times and I thought I would wake up and find it all over the news or on Instagram.”

Late on June 8, a Bronxite watched 30 objects “flying in a perfect line, in perfect synchronicity” that “looked like a bunch of moving stars.”

The observer insisted, “I don’t drink, or take any drugs whatsoever. I’m not a UFO conspiracy theorist.”

An eerie episode can happen any time, anywhere.

On the night of Sept. 15, a Brooklynite stuck his head “out the bathroom window of my 2nd floor home” and saw “orange/metallic” orbs “standing still over the Canarsie/Jamaica Bay area.”

Reported the stunned stargazer: “By the time I called my son, they were gone. I could not believe my eyes.”

ETs can also put on a show. On Feb. 21, a Manhattanite reported six UFOs dancing at the Statue of Liberty on Feb. 21.

To read the entire article, click HERE.

Friday, December 25, 2020

"The Festival" by H.P. Lovecraft

Courtesy of HorrorBabble and Ian Gordon comes this reading of H.P. Lovecraft's "The Festival," a nightmarish Christmas story that originally appeared in the January 1925 issue of Weird Tales....

"The Festival" / Lovecraft's Cthulhu Mythos

"It was the Yule-rite, older than man and fated to survive him; the primal rite of the solstice and of spring’s promise beyond the snows; the rite of fire and evergreen, light and music. And in the Stygian grotto I saw them do the rite, and adore the sick pillar of flame, and throw into the water handfuls gouged out of the viscous vegetation which glittered green in the chlorotic glare. I saw this, and I saw something amorphously squatted far away from the light, piping noisomely on a flute; and as the thing piped I thought I heard noxious muffled flutterings in the foetid darkness where I could not see. But what frightened me most was that flaming column; spouting volcanically from depths profound and inconceivable, casting no shadows as healthy flame should, and coating the nitrous stone above with a nasty, venomous verdigris. For in all that seething combustion no warmth lay, but only the clamminess of death and corruption."

Thursday, December 24, 2020

Guy N. Smith, R.I.P. (1939-2020)

The website of prolific horror writer Guy N. Smith, author of such infamous novels as NIGHT OF THE CRABS (1976), KILLER CRABS (1978), THE ORIGIN OF THE CRABS (1979), CRABS ON THE RAMPAGE (1981), and CRABS' MOON (1984), posted the following announcement earlier today:

It is with great sadness, especially at this time of year, that we have to report that after a spending short time in hospital following a fall, Guy passed away this morning (24th Dec 2020). Guy had tested positive for COVID-19. We are all in shock at the moment and will put more information here when we have it available. Our thoughts go out to his wife Jean and his four children.

Guy had some titles in production and we suspect these will be published in the new year....

To read the full announcement, click HERE

And to read Smith's 3-27-20 blog post about the connection between the coronavirus and his 1978 novel, BATS OUT OF HELL, click HERE.

"Crabs enjoy nothing more than a nice rampage, so for them it's an excellent bonus to discover that someone has brought their favorite food to the party: human guts. Don't mind if I do, say the crabs, although in their language it sounds more like clickety-click-click, as they start with the tramp platter.

"As the crabs topple our bridges, it seems that humanity has no choice--mankind is on the menu. Yet King Crab has made one fatal miscalculation. He has eaten Professor Cliff Davenport's favorite nephew. Now it's personal."

--Grady Hendrix, PAPERBACKS FROM HELL, 2017

Manly P. Hall's "When the Invincible Sun Moves Northward: The Solar Chistmas" (Reprise)

Take a brief break from the holiday festivities and explore the mindscape of Manly P. Hall via his classic lecture "When the Invincible Sun Moves Northward: The Solar Christmas" delivered at The Philosophical Research Society in Los Angeles on December 16, 1984:


"Each year the sun comes back to the world. Each year the world is just a little different. Each year the sun performs a slightly different service, and over the period of ages, these services vary greatly.

"The sun is the cleanser, the purifier, and the eliminator. It will come every time to carry on this particular task. Sometimes it will find a dark world waiting for it, heavily burdened with its own errors. Sometimes it will come to a better world where things seem right. But always the sun in its cycle is working toward the one great end and that great end, of course, is the final illumination of all that exists, that all things in, by, and for themselves shall be fulfilled or be perfect in their needs and in their operations.

"As the sun produces the symbol of the sprouting of the seed, so the light within ourselves produces the ripening of all the inner values of consciousness. And the sun which brings the harvest to the earth brings a light to the minds and hearts of human beings so that they may have the harvest of their years and have a great and wonderful future.

"The astronomical Christmas is based on the old solar mythology. The (Soular) solar deity is born at the winter solstice and substitutes for the three broken spokes of the wheel. It attains victory over darkness at the vernal equinox. The Christ principle performs a Pentecostal mystery by bestowing its powers upon the twelve disciples who personify the signs of the zodiac. While most of this esoteric meaning of the annual birthday of the sun is no longer remembered, it constitutes justification for the study of astronomy. Some day it will dawn upon the conventional astronomer that he is involved, not merely in a scientific project, but one of the sacred sciences dealing with the mysteries of birth, life, death, and resurrection."


Santa Is a Psychedelic Mushroom


In his book The Long Trip: A Prehistory of Psychedelia, Paul Devereux recounts the theory that imagery and folklore about Santa Claus may have been influenced by the shamanic history surrounding the psychedelic mushroom, Amanita muscaria....

To read Taylor's entire post, click HERE

If this topic piques your interest, you might want to check out Grant Morrison and Dan Mora's graphic novel, KLAUS, in which Santa Claus is reimagined as a psychedelic shaman. As I said in my 2015 "Cryptoscatology Top Ten" post, "If L. Frank Baum and Terence McKenna had collaborated on a comic book script, it might have read like this. 'Nuff said!"

Wednesday, December 23, 2020

Rocketman Returns (Again)

From Tyler Rogoway's 12-23-20 article entitled "Video Taken By Pilots Of What Could Be The Elusive Los Angeles Jet Pack Guy Emerges":

When it comes to weird stories that keep getting weirder, the elusive "Jet Pack Guy" of Los Angeles pretty much takes the cake. After multiple reported sightings from airline pilots on more than one occasion of a guy in a jet pack flying around at thousands of feet near Los Angeles International Airport—some of the most congested airspace on earth—as well as ongoing FAA and FBI investigations into the matter, we now have credible video of what seems to be the flying object in question.

The footage doesn't come to us from some random Reddit board or YouTube channel, either. It was taken during an instructional flight from Sling Pilot Academy in the training area off Palos Verdes. We reached out to the flight school, which is based out of Zamperini Field, in Torrance, California for additional details.

One of the pilots involved in the bizarre incident told The War Zone that they were flying along their route in the practice area between Palos Verdes and Catalina Islands when they caught what appeared to at least resemble a guy in a jet pack flying towards them in the opposite direction at about 3,000 feet. The object passed along the right side of their aircraft and kept going until it was out of sight.

To read the entire article, click HERE.

Capella Space

From Dan Robitzski's 12-16-20 FUTURISM article entitled "A New Satellite Can Peer Inside Buildings, Day or Night":

A few months ago, a company called Capella Space launched a satellite capable of taking clear radar images of anywhere in the world, with incredible resolution — even through the walls of some buildings.

And unlike most of the huge array of surveillance and observational satellites orbiting the Earth, its satellite Capella 2 can snap a clear picture during night or day, rain or shine.

“It turns out that half of the world is in nighttime, and half of the world, on average, is cloudy,” CEO Payam Banazadeh, a former system engineer at the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, told Futurism. “When you combine those two together, about 75 percent of Earth, at any given time, is going to be cloudy, nighttime, or it’s going to be both. It’s invisible to you, and that portion is moving around.”

On Wednesday, Capella launched a platform allowing governmental or private customers to request images of anything in the world — a capability that will only get more powerful with the deployment of six additional satellites next year. Is that creepy from a privacy point of view? Sure. But Banazadeh says that it also plugs numerous holes in the ways scientists and government agencies are currently able to monitor the planet.

“There’s a bunch of gaps in how we’re currently observing Earth from space — the majority of the sensors we use to observe earth are optical imaging sensors,” he said. “If it’s cloudy, you’re going to see the clouds, not what’s happening under the clouds. And if there’s not much light, you’re going to have a really hard time getting an image that is useful.”

By contrast, Capella can peer right through cloud cover, and see just as well in the daylight as in total darkness. That’s because instead of optical imaging, it uses synthetic aperture radar, or SAR.

SAR works similarly to how dolphins and bats navigate using echolocation. The satellite beams down a powerful 9.65 GHz radio signal toward its target, and then collects and interprets the signal as it bounces back up into orbit. And because the satellite is sending down its own signal rather than passively capturing light, sometimes those signals can even penetrate right through a building’s wall, peering at the interior like Superman’s X-ray vision.

“At that frequency, the clouds are pretty much transparent,” Banazadeh told Futurism. “You can penetrate clouds, fog, moisture, smoke, haze. Those things don’t matter anymore. And because you’re generating your own signal, it’s as if you’re carrying a flashlight. You don’t care if it’s day or night.”

Capella didn’t invent SAR. But Banazadeh says it’s the first U.S. company to offer the technology, and the first worldwide to offer a more accessible platform for potential customers to use.

To read the rest of the article, click HERE.