In Disneyland of the Gods, John Keel writes of the Black Knight satellite. Never mind the almanac. You won't find it listed with Sputnik or Explorer. Black Knight is the name given to a radar blip discovered in 1960. This mystery satellite was found in a polar orbit, something neither the US nor the Soviets had accomplished. It was several times larger and several times heavier than anything capable of being launched with 1960 rockets. It shouldn't have been there, but it was.
If that weren't enough, ham operators began receiving odd messages from the Black Knight. One operator decoded a series of these messages as a star map. The map centered on Epsilon Boštes as seen from the earth 13,000 years ago. Remember, stars don't move very far even after 13,000 years, and Epsilon Boštes is moving towards us. Only the neighboring stars appear different after that amount of time. Was the Black Knight an alien calling card?
Perhaps the strangest effect associated with the Black Knight is the Long Delay Echo (LDE). The effect observed is that radio or television signals sent into space bounce back seconds (or even days) later, as if recorded and retransmitted by a satellite. They didn't begin with the Black Knight, but they were part of its mystery. Keel places the earliest LDEs in the 1920s. It's not in Keel's book, but in 1974 another mystery entered earth orbit. No radar saw it. No ham operator listened to it. One man contacted it- or rather, was contacted by it. That man was science fiction author Philip K. Dick.....
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