back to article UFO wind turbine prang site sealed

Security operatives backed by snarling dogs have sealed off the Conisholme wind farm in Lincolnshire, to prevent alien hunters making off with the remains of the UFO which earlier this month seriously damaged one of the turbines, the Sun reports. Ufologists are pretty well convinced there is an extraterrestrial explanation for …

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Happy

@James - Occam's Razor?

"I can't imagine that a race clever enough to have mastered interstellar travel would then have an accidental prang with a wind turbine..."

You're assuming they have a strictly enforced non-interference directive and/or no sense of humour. I can imagine them flicking on the deflector screens and shouting the Xeenu equivalent of "YeeeeeHa!" as they fly through the primitive whirly thing, sending bits of it flying in all dirertions. One can deduce it wasn't that much fun, or that it would be regarded as a bit naughty back on Xeenu, otherwise they'd have lined up a whole row of turbines for their next trick!

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Happy

It was Thor

He never could fly straight that boy ah well looks like he finished counting the pebbles on that beach wonder if he has learned to use a phone yet ?

I don't expect any one to get what i'm going on about but if any Douglas Adams fans. do well done treat yourself to a cup of tea

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Black Helicopters

I like the way you all jump on the UFO theroists...

as though the government and its agencies have never lied to or misled the general public in any way or covered up the truth about things countless times in history...!?!

Are you all really pig-headed enough to think that in this almost infinate universe - where every star you can see (and the trillians & trillians you can't) is a 'Sun' with potentially with it's own system of planets like our own - that we are on the only planet that has any life on it?

Anyone would think the 'God made the earth in seven days and that's final' brigade had signed up to el reg..

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Alien

UAV

What's the odds it is an expensive prototype (smaller than 170 ft) UAV that went AWOL ?

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Anonymous Coward

@Lee Stacey

Where is the evidence that the blades were hit by anything airborne? You haven't got any have you?

Ecotricity want everybody to think the blades were hit by a flying object, because the alternative is not convenient for them. The idea that one blade catestrophically failed and hit a second blade opens up investigations into the cause of the failure. These investigations could well lead to the "precautionary" shutdown of all similar turbines and all Ecotricity windfarms. Better for them that they blame a unidentified flying object and hope that the health and safety man bans UFOs instead.

My bet is that there was a short lived identified flying object. The blade that failed.

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I have some information

I am currently working on a defence project that involves lightweight, high-speed, unmanned drones made from secret composhkl a[wNO CARRIER

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Joke

Aaargh!! The acronyms!!

"an ultrasecret robot stealth aircraft project"... ...would actually be a "UFO" wouldn't it?"

Nope. It would be a "URSAP".

Myself, I think it was an "ultrasecret stealth colliding robot aircraft project".....

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Alien

Obvious explanation.

The blade was clearly stolen by pikeys. Could well be space-pikeys.

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Paris Hilton

It was clearly the work of Little Baby Jesus

Eschaton will have to be delayed a week while he gets over the nasty bruising from the wind turbine. Meantime go and bomb an atheist or something.

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Coat

@It'sa Mea... Mario

6 days, Union Rules meant he had to take the 7th day off :P

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Alien

@Perpetual Cyclist

So that would be the nuclear industry that Brown and his fuckwit Cabinet have allowed to decay almost to nothing, and then sold off to the French would it?

Get a brain. If decent money had been invested in the nuclear industry then we would have clean, cheap fusion and there would be no dirty spent fuel rods messing up the countryside.

Do you really know anything about power generation? Like how wind power is not reliable enough? Or that the "renewable" sources require a permanently-on plant to provide a power cycle for them to synchonise with, and that you cannot get a constant-enough supply from renewables alone (even if you sum up all the wind farms, tidal bores etc in the whole of Europe!) to give a strong, sufficiently steady synchro 'signal'?

From your handle I'm guessing you also believe all the crap fed to you by the green lobby... in which case, I hope the computer and network systems you are using have never been near a lorry or other producer of greenhouse gases or other pollutants, and contains nothing that may harm the Environment (like motherboard batteries, electrolytic capacitors, insulation on 'exposed' copper cables, low-melt solder...). Oops.

Oh Great Cthulhu, please let it be a flying polyp or a nightgaunt, or even one of your own Servitor races - at least then we wouldn't need to suffer these fools ere long...

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Black Helicopters

The obvious answer....

The rotating windmill hit a pocket of floating swamp gas which then ignited and blew up the turbine!

Either that, or Ethan Hunt (otherwise known by his cover name of conveniently globe-trotting actor Tom Cruise) was holding another death-defying) helicopter chase through a wind farm ala "Mission Impossible III" and this is just HMG cleaning up the evidence of U.S. black ops agents conducting paramilitary operations in Blighty!!

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Joke

Hmmmm

Maybe it was Don Quixote.

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Go

Uri Geller

That is all.

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Alien

Occam's wind powered electric shaver

Hmmm - @ I wonder if Enercon will have to shut down all of their 13000 installations "as a precautionary shutdown"? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Enercon

I think Ecotricity is basically saying at the moment they don't know what the cause of the broken turbine is - so ruling out an unidentified flying object (as opposed to Cthulu or FSM - despite reports from locals) at this stage would be illogical.

There was virtually no wind at the time and it is a new windfarm (live this summer) - so 'it just breaking' due to mechanical failure is unlikely, if not less than likely, an 'object' hitting it. Ice or no ice.

I am sure they are loving all the free publicity though, front page of the Sun! Good on em! I am a customer of theirs and I know I will never see a paid advert for them on TV - they would rather spend the cash on building turbines and employing local people, both of which I believe to be worthwhile.

Even so - brightened up a quiet news week didn't it? Oh, some overpaid football guy crashed a Ferarri, and there is fighting in gaza... and the internet is inherently insecure ;-)

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@It'sa Mea... Mario

People like you really get on my wick. You assume that because there is a vast number of stars in the universe, that this must mean that ours can't be the only one with life orbiting it.

Okay smartarse, how does life start? How probable is it? You don't know and it's very relevant, because if the odds are [number of planets in the universe plus one] to 1 or worse, then we're probably all there is. If it's 10-1, we're going to be overrun with life-bearing planets.

Note that I am not suggesting either possibility is necessarily correct, unlike you in your pig-headedness. I'm simply pointing out that you don't have enough evidence to make a judgement either way.

To think that you can answer the question at all is the real arrogance.

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Happy

@Lyndon Hills

Yes come on Reg, I need a Playmobil hit ...

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Alien

@the wingnut anon who knows so much about nuclear & dislikes cyclists

"decay almost to nothing"

No that will take a couple of thousand years at least :-D

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_waste

cheap, safe, clean - the nuclear mantra...

but how does £70 per megawatt hour sound?

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2009/jan/05/nuclear-energy-rising-cost

how about £83bn to clean up the current mess over the next 130 years?

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2008/jul/18/nuclearpower.energy

Meh! the plan is to use less energy - not more... is that what makes us civilised and intelligent?

That's the cheap bit - the clean - do I really need to point out a few 'incidents' in France too?

Turn your pc off every now and then! or the noodle monster will get you..

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Coat

Non stick coatings?

It could be some type of ulta secret plane with a mysterious black coating just like your Jamie Olvier frypan.........mines the one with the egg and bacon fry up in the pocket

Stealth cooking utensils cos I'm on a diet and don't want the Mrs to know

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Thing is

they haven't found the missing blade yet

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Anonymous Coward

Aliens - probably.....

Liam Johnson is right - with a twist.

Alien 1: Well, here we are, back on this crap-hole again. Remember last time? I think I left my jam and pickle sandwhich somewhere around here. I wonder what several millions of years has done to it? I wonder if anything intelligent evolved, you know like that banana on Alpha Centauri?

Alien 2: Well, don't forget we're only here to complain about this Vista crap - it caused the downfall of our civilisation. Bloody Galactic Government - no one with any intelligence would use it for flight control. It could crash anytim.......

<CRASH>

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Alien

Re: jumping on the UFO theorists

Ok, let's put this in perspective...

Now the only planet we know of that supports life is Earth, so the only way we can guesstimate the probability of life evolving in solar systems similar to our own is to use our planet's evolutionary history as a yardstick. So:

1) Probability of microbial life elsewhere: Well, Earth has had microbes since day dot, and they developed under pretty severe conditions, so... almost certainty, and very common.

2) Probability of vertebrate macroscopic life elsewhere: Earth was quite quick to follow up on the microbes with this as conditions improved, so... very likely, and quite common.

3) Probability of intelligent life elsewhere: Hmmm. Earth has produced only one intelligent species in 4000 million years, out of all the millions of species that evolved, so... probably, but very rare.

4) Probability of said rare intelligent life circumventing relativity and/or successfully harnessing the STUPENDOUS amounts of energy (and we're talking whole stars' worth here) required to accelerate even a small ship up to relativistic velocities - WITHOUT first turning said stupendous energy source into a planet-smashing weapon and blowing themselves to bits over ideological differences: Well, Earth hasn't done this yet, so a good guess would be... astronomically unlikely, to the tune of maybe, say, 1 such civilisation per few hundred galaxies or so (optimistically); since given the amount of energy such travel would require, these civilisations would leave a visible energy footprint which we would likely have detected by now, especially if there were lots of them...

5) Probability of said astronomically rare intelligent starfaring civilisations coming across our planet (or entering within the tiny 100-odd-light-year radio radius of our transmissions in order to detect us) orbiting one of about 150 billion stars in this galaxy which is one of about 10,000 billion galaxies in the visible universe...?

...and I think we're justified in being just a teensy bit skeptical, don't you?

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Unhappy

All that money spent on SETI

And all they needed to do was set up more wind turbines!

Fools!

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Renewable technology trashed?

It was probably Jeremy Clarkson.

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@ Steve Roper

You forgot:

6) Probability of said astronomically rare intelligent starfaring civilizations, having come across our planet or 100-light-year-bubble of radio transmissions in order to detect us, out of all the possible places they could visit or ways they could communicate with or study us, making their first port of call a remote field in England and crashing into a wind turbine.

It's not so much about scepticism as it is about not being severely retarded.

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Black Helicopters

Easy Explanation, attempts to cover it up.

The most likely cause is that on of the blades on the turbine snapped off and hit the other causing it to bend (It's spinning you see :P ).

They are probably trying to cover up the fact that there is a design flaw in hundreds of the wind turbines that have been peppered across the few pieces of countryside left, what better way than aliens.

When ever governments test secret military craft they often encorage the alien reports because it instantly discredits the sightings.

Maybe they have something in common with the wind turbine. "erm... It didn't break; Aliens did it!"

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Anonymous Coward

Greenpeace

It was probably some Greenpeace activist protesting about the environmental damage that these whirling monstrosities are...

...everything is bad for the environment and must be destroyed on our way back to c1100 AD according to Greenpeace....

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Anonymous Coward

What happened to the pictures?

When this story first broke there were claimed that eyewitnesses had filmed and photographed lights moving in the sky.

I have yet to see any such pictures.

The 'Octopus UFO' was probably just a fireworks display witness by an extremely drunk or stupid man, or a sarcastic man, or a man who likes winding people up, or possibly even a man who saw an easy way of getting his name into the papers.

Wind turbine failures are more common than people think. Even though they are made from a light composite, being 60 foot long each blade is subject to enormous stresses just from being rotated in the Earth's gravitational field, not to mention similar loads to aeroplane wings from the wind pressure.

It's entirely probbaly that the missing blade suffered a material failure and fractured, being flung off into the path of the next blade, which struck it and was subsequently bent.

Perhaps the brakes failed and the thing went into overspeed.

In any case, restricting the site is an entirely sensible idea - not only would they want to ensure that the investigation can take place without interference, they can also minimise the risk of members of the public being killed or injured should another turbine fail at the site.

Although, the one possibility that everyone seems to be overlooking? Terrorists did it!

(Surprised Wacky Jacqui Smith hasn't tried using this one yet)

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Paris Hilton

Fireworks?

I read quote from someone who lives nearby who said they were worried that they might have been responsible because they were having a fireworks party at the time and they thought one of their rockets might have hit the turbine. So we've got someone having a fireworks party and there are strange lights in the sky and a "big bang" - nah can't be any connection must be a UFO.

Paris 'cos she's always willing to give us a flash, and she likes a good bang.

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Coat

hmmm..

Garry McKinnon emailed his alien friends to "demonstrate their anger" at his deportation to face 50 years rotting in a US prison.

Windfarm is destroyed, the next day McKinnon cuts a deal to spend a few years in one of the UK holiday camps known as prisons.

Coincidence?

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Anonymous Coward

@SteveRoper

Discussing probability of things is irrelevant. You seem to be suggesting that because something is so improbably it can't happen.

All I'm going to say is: The National Lottery.

Because something is improbable doesn't make it impossible.

Take a look at the number of galaxies and then take a look at the number of stars within those galaxies photographed by Hubble. We've already found water or evidence for the past existence of water on mars, that's one more planet in our solar system. How many solar systems are there out there?

To suggest their can't be life because it's improbably small, yet, when we have in our small solar system the basics elements of life on a nearby planet is fool heardy.

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Anonymous Coward

One blade striking another

"It's entirely probbaly that the missing blade suffered a material failure and fractured, being flung off into the path of the next blade, which struck it and was subsequently bent."

Both blades were rotating in the same direction (clockwise or anti-clickwise), so it one sheered off, it's likely to fly off at a tangent and not hit the blade behind. It's also unlikely to strike the blade in front as that blade would be continuing in a circular arc too. And all blades would be moving at the same speed, (same angular speed), one is behind and one is in front.

However, I wouldn't rule out that somehow the blade struck another, this is the most likely explanation rather than UFOs.

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Black Helicopters

Anacronyms....

Surely it was a Covert Remote Air Patrol vehicle or a Totally Undetectable Remote Drone......

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Thumb Up

@Mike Groombridge

No one has yet reported any Eagles with strange markings in the vicinity, nor any Coca-cola vending machines, so I guess that the Woodshead have already been round to clean up.

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Boffin

Meteorite?

A meteorite is more likely than Aliens.

Someone playing with a Trebuchet in their back garden is more likely than Aliens.

A kid lighting the worlds biggest fart right underneath it is more likely than Aliens.

Not that any of that will stop those sad morons from touting their religion in the press.

Religion? Well, there's no proof and it's all based on "Faith" and "Truth" so it's close enough for me.

A seized bearing is more likely than anything else.

This could cause one blade to break off and damage the next blade on it's way past.

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Coat

Ok, I'll admit it...

OK, sorry ... I guess it's time for me to fess up ... it was me!

I was sat about with a few mates the other night having a few beers and that, and we got to chatting about gadgets, stupidly I mentioned my flying car and a plot was hatched to nip over to the damme to pickup some bits & pieces.

On the way one of my mates discovered my maxx power stylee underbody lights switch, and I was goaded into buzzing some of the locals to give them a bit of 'UFO action', being a few sheets to the wind my piloting skills werent all that accurate on the night in question and I literally didnt see the turbine until it was too late!

Sadly the flying car is pretty much a write off and I've no idea what I'm going to put on the insurance claim form, if anyone has an old banger they dont mind driving into then it's possible I could get something back from it (I'll split the claim with you obviously)

Yours regretfully,

A. N. Other (name witheld for insurance purposes)

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Boffin

@ AC who replied to me

"Discussing probability of things is irrelevant. You seem to be suggesting that because something is so improbably it can't happen."

Probability of causes is irrelevant? HAHAHAHAHA..... mmmmpppffffffHAHAHAHA....

HAHAHaHa.... haha... ahem.... <wipes keyboard and monitor clean>

No, what I'm suggesting is that the probability of it happening is so miniscule, albeit not impossible, that in the face of the very many other FAR MORE probable explanations it is pointless spending time and resources considering it - at least until all other possible causes have been looked at and dismissed. I would consider the matter, ahead of an attack / accident by an alien spaceship, in order of probability, as something like this:

1) Structural failure, possibly due to a) design or engineering flaw; b) poor maintenance procedures; and/or c) unusual weather conditions. (85% chance)

2) Structural failure as a result of vandalism, theft or sabotage. (12% chance)

3) Damage resulting from lighting strike. (2% chance)

4) Ice falling off the wings of a passing aircraft striking the turbine. (0.7% chance)

5) Attack by a terrorist or foreign government. (0.25% chance)

6) Impact by a secret military test aircraft. (0.04999% chance)

7) Impact by a meteorite or falling space debris. (0.000000999999% chance)

8) Impact by an alien spaceship. (0.0000000000001% chance)

Yes, I know these figures are arbitrary, but they demonstrate the point I'm making, because if a qualified statistical analyst were to evaluate probabilities from available data the results would still resemble the curve produced by these numbers. Yes, an impact by an alien spaceship does indeed have a finite probability of being the cause, but it is so unlikely that any consideration of it as a viable option before the other possible causes listed above is a self-evident waste of everyone's time and resources. This is why most sensible people are skeptical of those who ignore probabilities to espouse their favourite interpretation, rather than far more realistic and probable ones.

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Joke

Re: the Religious fundamentalist position.

It was Jesus in an Iron Man suit.

Obvious when you think about it.

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Beagle 2

@ Geeks and lies; "Whilst it would be great to finally answer the question of life on other planets, but sadly i feel any race advanced enough to get here in the first place would be sufficiently equiped to deal with avoiding a windturbine!"

Maybe there are little green men on Mars right now saying "Whilst it would be great to finally answer the question of life on other planets, but sadly i feel any race advanced enough to get here in the first place would be sufficiently equiped to deal with avoiding the ground!"

Probably not though. My bet's on The Flying Spaghetti Monster.

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Alien

Aliens ate my windmill.

I just signed up to ecotricity, (Eon having closed 24 hour freephone numbers.) When I realized it was the company that owned the wind turbine in the news, I asked if I get a free Aliens Ate My Windmill t-shirt.

The salesman seemed to think it was a good idea.

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Black Helicopters

@Steve Roper

Steve whilst I wholeheartedly agree with what you said in your last post, you could also argue that as searching for ET is what these people devote most of their lives to, this would be the first explanation/theory that they would try to verify over all others...whilst I don't agree with their logic I can see why they would think this way

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n

Obviously

ALIEN SCOUT SHIP: Hi, Kang here.

ALIEN MISSION CONTROL: Hi Kang, what are those aggressive monkeys on the third planet up to now?

ALIEN SCOUT SHIP: Right, they've got some new power generators sir...LOTS of them.

ALIEN MISSION CONTROL: Ah, yes, they must be onto cold-fusion-energon-ion generation. They did nuclear about 50 years ago right?

ALIEN SCOUT SHIP: No, it's not cold-fusion-energon-ion their using.

ALIEN MISSION CONTROL: Eh? Interesting, what have they got?

ALIEN SCOUT SHIP: I don't quite know how to say this sir...b..but, they have ....windmills.

ALIEN MISSION CONTROL: WINDMILLS!

ALIEN MISSION CONTROL: Have you been drinking Aldebaran Whiskey while on duty again? I'll have you posted to take rock samples on an abandoned moon in alpha centauri for such insolence!

ALIEN SCOUT SHIP: No, really! i...i know it sound unbelievable Sir...but they actually ARE using windmills.

ALIEN MISSION CONTROL: But they did windmills about 2 millenia ago Kang! Why the hell would they.......Ah!........it must be a disguise!

It must be some new technology hidden inside a poxy windmill.

Get down there right now and knock one over to see what's inside.

ALIEN SCOUT SHIP: But, that's against regul...

ALIEN MISSION CONTROL: Regulations nothing Kang! Get down their NOW!

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