Is there any man-made explanation the USAF can come up with following your research and publishing of the SUNRISE book that could explain the Roswell object of early July 1947 while accepting that it probably was a titanium-based shape-memory dark-grey alloy used in the Roswell foil?
Good luck if the USAF can explain it.
The problem for the USAF or anyone else for that matter in trying to find a man-made explanation is how to explain four issues regarding the titanium-based shape-memory alloy in 1947:
- A detailed knowledge of the theory behind shape-memory alloys to help predict at least one in the titanium alloy family.
- The purity needed to achieve the shape-memory response.
- The quantity needed to build a large object to carry around six people.
- The manufacturing technology needed to make ultra-thin shape-memory sheets.
In other words, if there was a man-made explanation for the Roswell object that crashed in early July 1947 to account for the large amount of a dark-grey and tough shape-memory foil, it would require someone to have a certain amount of scientific knowledge of shape-memory alloys and the technical details and equipment needed to manufacture in pure form the dark-grey shape-memory alloy containing titanium (i.e., NiTi) in sheet form at an incredible thin dimension (i.e., like a sheet of newspaper), and in enough quantities to build a large flying object.
What we do know is that at an official scientific level, the importance of purity for titanium-based alloys and knowledge of shape-memory alloys came after 1958 thanks to William Buehler and others at the Naval Ordnance Laboratory (NOL) who had accidentally discovered the shape memory property in NiTi. Then, a SUNRISE study of NiTi in the scientific literature revealed a secret study by the USAF with assistance from the Battelle Memorial Institute starting in March 1948 into NiTi and several other titanium-based shape memory alloys. The report is also the first we know of showing a USAF interest in the knowledge of purity for titanium alloys. Before then, only very small samples of NiTi (the world's most powerful shape-memory alloy and the first looked at in the titanium alloy family) were produced by Dr John P. Nielsen at the New York University after being granted leave from the USAF to become full professor of metallurgy at a very young age in NYU (apparently uncontested). Dr Nielsen's involvement would occur sometime after July 1947. There are no indications it was before the Roswell crash.
However, there is no evidence that such USAF interest (or by anyone else) in purity, shape-memory alloys, and the manufacture of such alloys in large quantities and in very thin sheets was available prior to July 1947. In fact, the technology was not available prior to July 1947 for titanium-based shape-memory alloys. and no one in the scientific community knew the importance of purity when discovering a new and more powerful shape-memory alloy known as NiTi.
The problem is, this knowledge would not get mentioned until USAF/Battelle reports appeared in 1948 discussing the purity issue and in looking at specific titanium-based shape-memory alloys, including NiTi. And even if the knowledge was accidentally known by Dr Nielsen, the quantities he was making NiTi were too small to build a flying object of the type recovered from the New Mexico desert, Yet somehow the object with its titanium-based NiTi-like alloy hull used in the Roswell object was already manufactured to such a quantity and high purity by July 1947 that it seems totally impossible for the USAF to have manufactured it.
Indeed, there was no technology available in 1947 to create the alloy and in the quantity required as well as the machines to flatten out the alloy thin enough given the heat it will generate and the shape-memory effect that would get activated to prevent it from becoming very thin. You need a different manufacturing process to make newspaper thin nitinol. From our discussions with a U.S. nitinol manufacturer, that ability would not come until 2021. Unless the USAF can provide a report dated prior to July 1947 to explain how it did this work and the nature of the high-speed object that required such an expensive and tough alloy to be used, it is looking decidedly like the USAF were not the manufacturers of the Roswell object. And with no one else in the world capable of manufacturing it, the odds are stacked against the USAF in claiming it is man-made.
We may now have to face the reality that perhaps we may have something significant and important for humanity to look at. It is time we determine what this object is, and who the victims were, which still remains secret to this day.
What we can conclude is that the Roswell object was definitely artificial. Someone made it. And whoever it was that made it knows about the knowledge and had the equipment to mass-produce a titanium-based shape-memory alloy as an exterior hull material.
There is nothing in the history and stated officially by the U.S. military to support any possibility of the Roswell object being man-made.
Did the Roswell foil really have titanium in it?
Former commanding officer of Wright-Patterson Air Force Base (AFB) Brigadier-General Arthur E. Exon made it clear to investigators that when he was at the base, he was in communication with a number of people of which several had told him that the Roswell foil contained titanium. Furthermore, a foil that returned to its original shape has to be an alloy. No metal can return to its original shape in the significant manner this foil had shown to the witnesses. And it is an alloy of at least two elements, of which one has to be titanium in substantial quantities. Also, it had to be dark-grey. Sounds very much like we are dealing with NiTi, the only dark-grey and most powerful titanium-based shape-memory alloy in existence, and certainly in 1947. Either that, or small traces of a third element could have been added to enhance the engineering properties of NiTi as the SUNRISE book has revealed. But if not, and there is another alloy that looks and behaves in the same way, the USAF certainly has a lot of explaining to do. So far, for a clean, unadulterated shape-memory alloy to appear dark-grey and have a pronounced shape-memory effect like the Roswell foil, only nitinol comes close to supporting this observation.
Furthermore, there were no known alloys in the scientific literature at around the time of the Roswell crash that can match Roswell foil extraordinary toughness properties except for NiTi if prepared correctly to maximise its hardness (such as cold working the alloy).
Could anyone from the Project Mogul team have developed a titanium-based shape-memory alloy as part of its secret testing in 1947?
The people who worked on Project Mogul did not mention shape-memory alloys in the manufacture of their weather balloons. If anyone could have made the alloy, it would have to be the USAF. Unfortunately the decision by the USAF to go back to ordinary titanium to build the world's first titanium jet aircraft in 1952 is not supporting the slightest possibility that the military had this knowledge in 1947. If the Roswell object was man-made, it makes no sense to go backwards in their technological achievements after somehow making a titanium-based shape-memory alloy, and do it with such ease given the quantities used in the Roswell object. Whatever the USAF had manufactured by July 1947 would not be repeated for a long time until the technology was there. And even then, making ultra thin nitinol sheets as thin as a newspaper sheet is still not available as of February 2021. Instead a plain ordinary titanium skin would be used for the fighter jet. So definitely no need for extremely high purity of the titanium alloy to reveal any special kind of property. Nice and easy for the USAF. Yet it does not explain the decision to suddenly stop all work into a highly pure titanium-based shape-memory alloy after July 1947 on what we must presume was a secret military experiment on a new type of flying object all because of a silly lightning strike. How odd? Why use such an expensive and tough shape-retaining alloy on a slow-moving weather balloon? Clearly the alloy must have been used in a high-speed object. That is the only reason to go to this trouble to make a large quantity of a tough shape-memory alloy. Yet this high-speed object was immediately abandoned not because the alloy failed miserably during the experiment, or the fact that it could not fly. Far from it. The object flew well and the alloy worked exactly as it was intended to retain the original shape of the object. Rather it was because of a humble lightning strike that brought down the object and possibly with pilots and crew onboard. Big deal? Ordinary civilian aircraft have been brought down by lightning strikes in the past. Today, there are solutions available to the problem. So why stop the military project all of a sudden?
And why would a lightning strike bring down the object anyway? What is so special about the object itself that had attracted the lightning so easily and repeatedly according to the testimony of the rancher who heard the odd explosion?
It is clear at this stage that something strange was found in early July 1947 in the New Mexico desert. The alloy is only just the beginning. The real issue appears to be the bodies. There is something special about these bodies recovered by the USAF and not just the alloy itself that has made it necessary to maintain secrecy to this day.
The scientific literature indicates that AuCd is a shape memory metal discovered in 1932. This is 15 years before Roswell. So doesn't this prove the Roswell case is man-made?
Not necessarily. For a start, AuCd is not tough enough to withstand the high temperatures of a blow torch or resist scratching and denting with a heavy sledgehammer as the military witnesses at Roswell AFB discovered. Furthermore the colour of AuCd is not dark-grey. It is, as you know, more yellowish thanks to its proportion of gold. It means that we are not dealing with AuCd. In fact, the only other shape-memory alloy discovered prior to the Roswell case is CuZn, but again this has the same problem as with AuCd regarding its lack of toughness properties. And not even this alloy is of the dark-grey colour. Furthermore, these two alloys are considered weak shape-memory alloys (or termed pseudoelastic, not like the true superelastic properties of NiTi and a few other alloys that have appeared in the scientific literature after the 1960s) in comparison to NiTi.
The type of shape-memory we are talking about in relation to the Roswell case must be a lot tougher. This is a degree of toughness in an incredibly lightweight and newspaper thin foil that was never seen by anyone prior to July 1947.
Then, all of a sudden, we find the right stuff by way of a titanium-based shape-memory alloy and, remarkably, of the right colour through NiTi thanks to formerly secret USAF/Battelle reports published just after 1947. And not just one, but up to four titanium-based alloys later identified by scientists as shape-memory alloys. A coincidence? Not likely considering the witnesses were clear about the shape-memory effect of the dark-grey Roswell foil. Not only that, but we know the USAF received this Roswell foil for analysis at Wright-Patterson AFB the place that initiated the study into NiTi and other shape memory alloys after 1947. It means the effect cannot have been accidentally missed. So, the USAF must have known something about shape-memory alloys, and of the titanium variety (since it is the only thing the USAF focused on between 1948 and 1949, and we can understand why).
The problem is, the USAF has never officially released a report discussing its own secret work on shape-memory alloys just prior to the Roswell crash, as well as explain how and why it all began. What was the motivation to study shape-memory alloys in the first place? How did the USAF predict one would exist in the titanium alloy family? And did this prediction for one titanium-based shape-memory alloy begin with NiTi? Otherwise a random combination of titanium and another element to create one would not have been possible because of the purity issue before July 1947. Well, now we can understand why. The military could not have done the work. It did not even have the technology to make small samples of a highly pure titanium-based shape-memory alloy before July 1947. Someone else did, and the USAF is not willing to say who this is or what this object actually is.
What's your source for two Twining documents relating to UFOs and the alleged examination of a flying disc in #1 and #4 in your research documents page?
As one person wrote, "What's your source for the Roswell government documents, particularly #1 and #4 posted on your site? Why have these documents never been seen before in the public domain?"
#4 Memo from Twining that official began the USAF UFO investigations (including Project Blue Book) is well known and a copy is available from the National Archives in the United States. It was sent there by the USAF as a matter of public record under the Freedom of Information Act and described as part of RG18, Records of the Army Air Forces. If this document is not available online from a public domain source, we have kept a copy for those who want to read it in its entirety for their own research (as you have noticed). In fact, we have found a higher quality reproduction of the original document as a greyscale image and we have updated the PDF to show this on our web site.
#1 Not supported by the USAF, this incomplete 3-page document from General Twining purporting to provide details of a preliminary examination of a disc recovered in New Mexico is described as part of the Majestic 12 (MJ-12) documents in which a mixture of authentic and fake documents were combined. In terms of the 3-page document itself, Timothy Cooper whose father worked at White Sands in the 1940s was the one to receive this document among various others in 1992 when he received one of two packages the second and last parcel arrived in July 2001 and marked as having been sent from Virginia by an anonymous source. The documents in the 1992 batch were later sent to the father and son team of Ryan and Robert Wood, who in turn passed on the documents to Stanton Friedman.
If you require more details of the sequence of events in relation to when all these MJ-12 documents arrived and who received what, check out this link. Whilst various documents have appeared anonymously since 1984 to different UFO investigators and researchers and all are generally described as MJ-12 documents with some showing signs of forgery, this 3-page document has not been seen as a fake at this stage. Indeed, neither Twining's son nor the daughter have claimed the document is a fake. They see the document as supporting what was said by their father just 6 weeks before his death. Furthermore, examination of the way the document was typed shows no signs of forgery were attempted using any kind of modern typewriter. Therefore, the general consensus is that the writing is consistent with state of the art technology used by the military in the 1947 period. The document is currently considered genuine compared with some other so called MJ-12 documents that do show signs of forgery.
Perhaps someone from the U.S. government was concerned of leaks from employees and a decision was made to mix up genuine with fake documents, and only those in the know can tell the difference, whereas the hapless UFO researchers on the outside have to take the brunt of criticism and face the possibility that all MJ-12 documents are fake if just one such document is found to be the case.
At any rate, a box of genuine Twining documents and letters for the period were supplied by Twining's daughter and later declassified at the Library of Congress Manuscript Division. It is unclear whether it contains this 3-page document. What we do know is that the letter to Mr Julius Earl Schaefer of the Boeing Division claiming Twining had to suddenly change his travel plans to visit New Mexico under great urgency was included in the box and is considered genuine. Stanton Friedman took advantage of the declassification status and he was the first to inspect the papers.
As for the 3-page Twining document, this was eventually published by Leonard H. Stringfield's (now deceased) in Status Report VII, in 1994.
It may also be worth your while having an interview with Nathan Twining, Jr., to determine his thoughts on the document in question. Or you can discuss the document with Roswell investigator Tom Carey and veteran UFO researcher Ted Oliphant who have also spoken to the son. Also, UK investigator Joanne Summerscales spoke to a woman named Jo Walters. Walters claimed to have met the son sometime in 1997 or 1998. What she recalled from the discussion is available as a video testimony.
Also, feel free to review additional interesting Twining documents for the period from July to September 1947 from this site. These documents seem to overlap somewhat with the 3-page Twining document and shows some links to the kind of research work that was taking place, some of which are trying to hide the essence of the research in certain electromagnetic areas by claiming that they were part of some meteorological studies very soon after the alleged recovery of the disc, thereby giving more credence to the 3-page document.
What do you say to all those skeptics who believe the Roswell case is hogwash and is now "debunked"?
"Debunked" in the sense that the Roswell object is a man-made secret military experiment? One thing about skeptics is that they do need to be careful about what they say when they choose not to look at all the evidence. And anyway, science is not about believing but rather looking at the evidence and making reasonable and informed decisions and probable explanations for what happened based on the evidence at hand.
If the skeptics took the time to read the SUNRISE book (and analyze it properly) and do some of their own research into shape-memory alloys at the time of the crash and made reasonable efforts to speak to the remaining witnesses, it may come as a surprise that the Roswell case is far from being "debunked". In fact, the mystery of Roswell and what happened in mid-1947 deepens dramatically when we look more closely at the Roswell foil observed by the witnesses.
It would not be surprising if a number of these skeptics could be working for the USAF to help with "debunking" and directing the public and scientists away from the subject mainly because (a) the event is real and something extraordinary; and (b) it is too sensitive to mention to the public. Any other skeptic who gets involved will probably think "it is too good to be true, so why bother?" Unfortunately for these latter skeptics, they have not done the research and looked at shape-memory alloys closely enough to know what they are talking about or what has really happened at around the time of the Roswell crash.
What we are dealing with here is something that is not normal or based on any kind of man-made object. This becomes clearer once we realise the type of titanium-based shape-memory alloy the Roswell foil is almost certainly based on. It is time that the world looks at this case more closely, because it is strongly indicating that a major event did take place, and the USAF has been doing all it can to hide this fact against the interest of science and the natural advancement of our understanding about the universe for the public.
Tony (or Anthony) Bragalia is an American researcher, not known in UFO or Roswell circles prior to SUNRISE requesting information from the two principal Roswell investigators in the United States Tom Carey and Donald Schmift. A few weeks after we emailed the authors, Mr Bragalia suddenly appeared on the scene. Without mentioning his connection to Carey and Schmidt, he was learning all he could about our research. Perhaps he noticed our previous publication? Later, SUNRISE learned that Mr Bragalia passes on information he considers important and useful to Mr Carey (an Air Force veteran turned Roswell investigator who held a TOP SECRET/CRYPTO clearance in the military and later teamed up with Roswell investigator and author Donald Schmid; Mr Carey was also the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON) State Section Director for Southeastern Pennsylvania from 1986 to 2001 the organisation known to have close ties with US intelligence agencies as discovered by independent members and UFO field investigators, and there is a report written about this claim and published online). Mr Bragalia has been the only individual to communicate with SUNRISE about our research into shape-memory alloys, NiTi and the Roswell case. Not a single word from Carey or Schmidt, even to this day.
Unbeknownst to the American Roswell investigators, we had already published our initial findings in the late 1990s in Australia, a copy of which can be found at the National Library of Australia. However, no one has asked SUNRISE if we had published information in this area.
Mr Bragalia is the front line spokesperson for the group (without informing us of his connection with the authors). His interest was in handling our request for information and in learning all he can about what we know and who we are in exchange for anything he was willing to provide to us for our research. Then one day, our work appeared in Carey and Schmidt new Roswell book in which credit was given only to Mr Bragalia for doing all the work and without asking for our permission to publish (as we had yet to publish our updated edition) our work. This can be found in Witness to Roswell. Since then, Mr Bragalia has been the only person from the trio to ask from time-to-time for our further insights, advice and to learn more about us while creating his own web and continuing not to give acknowledgement of our contribution.
Since we have already published our work before the Americans did, we must leave it as that.
On 29 October 2020, Mr Bragalia sent another email with a link to SUNRISE. The link refers to a document found in Google Books mentioning the work of the USAF in NiTi and titanium-based alloys after 1947 via a footnote. He wrote in the subject: "Battelle Progress Reports were never confidential. Publicly available since 1954", which is understood today to be a highly useful angle for the Battelle Memorial Institute and the USAF to avoid any indications of continued secrecy in the titanium-based shape-memory alloy work by mid-1947 and the Roswell object that carried this type of alloy.
"From what we can see, we note the author has some kind of a link to the U.S. Department of Defense:
Catalog of Technical Reports: Series CTR.
By Business and Defense Services Administration
With the word "defense" linked to this document, one shouldn't expect this organisation to advertise the work on certain titanium-based alloys, in particular NiTi, with such gusto and fanfare to the world, especially for work on certain important alloys carried out by defense. Someone would have to be looking, and specifically within titanium and the research carried out by defense (and hence aware of certain footnotes), for any information relating to certain titanium-based alloys to be of interest. If there is an alloy of interest, he/she may request to view the report. And because the report is compartmentalised into two parts, one part may not carry the critical information in relation to one important alloy to make people wonder today along the lines of, "Huh? Isn't that work on different crystalline structures at different temperatures strongly supporting very early knowledge of a shape memory response in the alloys as if someone had worked out the response already exists in certain titanium alloys and is trying to figure out how it works?", then it may be okay. Whether or not the person requesting it is given access may depend on certain background checks to see who it is that is making the request and the nature of the work. If the work is not directly related to NiTi but some other alloy and/or it doesn't try to uncover the origins of pure NiTi that has somehow provided the USAF with some kind of an unexpected discovery in relation to a strong shape-memory response in a titanium alloy (we note there are several of them of interest to the USAF early in the piece), then it is usually fine. Whoever controls the report is likely to provide a "viewing" to certain individuals who may have seen the footnote and probably of that part of the report that isn't too critical, and later the report is returned. So, technically speaking, from a defense point-of-view, a Defense spokesman could argue that the report has always been available to the public since 1954. So there really isn't any secrecy.
From our point-of-view, we don't think it is enough to say the USAF had not accidentally uncovered a new technology in a titanium alloy never seen before just because the progress report could be "viewed" by certain individuals since 1954. Whether accidentally means a random combination of unusually pure nickel and titanium (for which no such technology existed to the purity required in 1947, so the question remains how the military did it), or picking up an alien technology, is something that only the USAF can explain.
As Bragalia said:
"Still, we are left with a central question: why did Billy Cox and I have to file a FOIA to obtain the Progress Report in the mid-2000s when it was already listed in a public catalog of available defense reports in the mid 1950s?" (emphasis as in the original).
We wrote along the lines of:
"We understand your interest in the central question you have of why the reports were released under FoIA in August 2009. And yes, it is important to look into this more closely.
For us, it still remains the fact that the Department Defense wasn't going to advertise this work done on titanium alloys in the progress reports to the public even if it now wants to believe the reports were available to the public (still doesn't explain why the FoI request was necessary, and indeed you can see on the released reports the effort to determine whether they should be de-classified and be given the "Approved for public release" with a date of 29 January 2010, which is kind of odd if the reports were already approved for public release since 1954). What seems to be interesting for us is how no one in the public knew about shape-memory alloys in the 1950s, and certainly not in the titanium family. Someone had to know the importance of NiTi and realise the USAF was studying it. And even then, the individual must also discover the work by the USAF was related to different crystalline structures at different temperatures for NiTi and other titanium alloys in the reports. Furthermore, the person has to be aware of the possibility of a shape memory response with changes in crystalline structure through temperature to realise the importance of this work to the USAF.
Apparently, for a report that was allegedly available to the public since 1954, for some reason the DoD was not exactly keen to see this work advertised as a matter of public interest. If the Roswell object was man-made and what happened is not a secret, you would expect the public to learn about it and see it as just another military crash of an experimental flying machine, allow the families to mourn the deaths of the pilots, and then move on. And if there is a technological challenge to solve at the time and the military still can't figure it out, then make the work and event known to everyone. Seriously, if the aim was to get interest from anyone who could help study the alloys and solve certain technical challenges the DoD was having at the time (which naturally has us scratching our heads as to how the Roswell object was manufactured by the military in the first place), you might as well let everyone know, right? Who knows? Maybe a bright young spark in a university might have some solutions to help the DoD. A sensible approach.
But this isn't the case looking at the history books.
Something suggests to us that it is possible the first time the footnote appeared mentioning the reports that it wasn't really meant to be there. But now that it has got published in a metallurgical article, the USAF had to follow the scientific etiquette of allowing individuals access to the reports for those who seem legitimate (i.e., scientists working in industry). But only if these individuals discover the footnote and had a reason to express an official interest in viewing the reports.
So how many officially requested a viewing of the reports in the 1950s?
Like the titanium industry, a decision was made to introduce the work on titanium and titanium alloys by the USAF and Battelle to industry (without advertising this fact to the public, but even this would not stop the scientific work from being discovered accidentally by the media as more scientists expressed enthusiasm over the metal's engineering potential leading to articles, such as in the Scientific American, to discuss the scientific work at the time). But not with NiTi. Not advertising this NiTi work was essential as it would have been a little too early after the Roswell crash to risk some members of the public uncovering some other facts about the Roswell object and start asking questions. Fortunately for the DoD, the release of information to the public was more in the titanium area and mentioning interest in certain titanium alloys (for the public, no specific alloy was mentioned), but not NiTi. We see this in the Scientific American article in 1949. While not mentioning NiTi and its shape-memory property, this would allow the DoD to continue keeping quiet while the USAF/Battelle progress reports had to be made "available" in industry and scientific circles should anyone request access to them.
But again how many people were asking to view the reports in the 1950s?
It is likely you are correct when you said that the Department of Defense could have seeded information about NiTi and other titanium alloys to industry like it did with titanium. But it was too risky. However, once the scientific community got hold of the other information about what the USAF was doing through the premature release of the footnote, then it had to be seen as a natural progression of scientific knowledge. Perhaps, like titanium, the DoD was hoping someone might discover the shape-memory effect and early enough to claim today that the work was probably all man-made, including the Roswell object. The only slight issue for the DoD is that it turned out only the U.S. Navy at the Naval Ordnance Laboratory (NOL) decided to learn more about NiTi in pure form and that came rather late in the 1950s (around 1958-59). Only then did the shape memory effect get "accidentally" discovered in 1959, specifically with NiTi. Although there is a lot of debate as to whether something discovered "by accident" is truly an invention and should be patented by the two NOL scientists, it would appear that after this discovery, there were finally some interest by scientists in the USAF/Battelle reports. In particular, the inventors of NiTi, Dr Frederick E. Wang (co-inventor with William Buehler because of his contributions in providing a crystalline transformation explanation for the shape memory effect) did request a "viewing" of the reports and was permitted as revealed by his own published scientific articles.
However, prior to the discovery, we can see that there weren't that many requests to view the "reports" in the 1950s. In fact, at the official level as far as we can tell, we see none until the inventor of NiTi in the 1960s decided to look at the reports after noticing the footnote. Why did he want to view the reports? Probably for the purposes of checking to see if the USAF had already invented NiTi and its shape-memory effect by looking at what the work was about which might explain why he decided to keep quiet afterwards when SUNRISE asked in an email about this aspect as it would be better to say nothing in order to benefit from selling the invention.
Indeed, there are likely to be questions raised about who invented NiTi.
Yes, we agree with you. It is rather perplexing as to why an FoI request had to be made by a member of the public to view the reports now considered by the Department of Defense as "publicly available". We know the DoD was not overtly keen to advertise this fact to the public in the 1950s (and even today it is not exactly getting an advertising agency to sing the praises to the public about the DoD work, let alone what it had been doing in the New Mexico desert in 1947). Something obviously happened to make the DoD realise that it had to say nothing but yet make the reports "available" on request by certain scientists if they expressed any interest in viewing them for whatever reason. So technically, any viewing allowed can be seen as "publicly available" and would certainly aid in the USAF explanation of a man-made explanation for the Roswell object by saying it is a natural progression of man-made scientific work in understanding certain alloys and, therefore, quite possibly the military could have discovered NiTi by accident on its own by mid-1947. But it is not clear from any reports how this accidental discovery from a man-made approach could have occurred at the time.
Whilst your central question on the FoI request is pertinent and relevant in the general study of the Roswell case, from a scientific viewpoint, the real central question in this debate is how the Roswell foil was invented to display the shape-memory effect in such a pronounced manner? It may be a coincidence that its color and timing just before the start of the titanium age could be NiTi (it was the only dark-greyish shape-memory alloy we know of). But we think it is unlikely thanks to the progress reports which mentioned this alloy in conjunction with other similar shape-memory alloys for comparison purposes. And given the tough nature of the foil and high-temperatures it could resist in the blowtorch tests at the Roswell base, it is highly likely based on available materials in 1947 that we are dealing with a metal or alloy. Must be the latter as no single metal element can display a shape-memory effect. So we are confident the Roswell foil is a shape-memory alloy. And its timing, together with an admission from a military general that the foil probably contained titanium, strongly suggests that we must be looking for a titanium-based shape-memory alloy with a reasonable amount of titanium in its composition to explain the toughness and shape-memory effect. Not some 1 or 2 percent titanium, but in excess of 40 per cent titanium. And to reveal the shape-memory effect in a titanium alloy, it has to be extremely pure. Unfortunately for the USAF, no such man-made technology was available prior to July 1947 to support this level of purity required, and certainly not in the quantities needed to build a relatively large Roswell object until well after 1948. So the question for the scientific community is, "How did the USAF make this shape-memory alloy in such great quantities to build a fairly sizeable Roswell flying object by mid-1947?"
Until this final report from 1947 comes out (and should be marked publicly available if the other reports are anything to go by) to explain how it all happened and what the USAF was testing by mid-1947, and what was so secret about the object and the people who flew it and died in the crash to this day to not tell the public about it, we are still in a quandary as to exactly what was found by the military in 1947 in the New Mexico desert.
Was the Roswell object man-made? Or are we dealing with a momentous scientific discovery of something more exotic and artificial in the nature of this mysterious flying object?
It is up to the USAF to give a final definitive explanation of what exactly it was doing in 1947, starting with the release of the final 1947 report."
Bragalia wants to know more about the SUNRISE claim of whether the USAF was aware of a shape-memory response in certain alloys
In your first email to me on this you say: "...work on different crystalline structures at different temperatures strongly supporting very early knowledge of a shape memory response in the alloys as if someone had worked out the response already exists in certain titanium alloys and is trying to figure out how it works" May I ask you a favor to cut and paste just a brief couple of sentences in Progress Report #2 that reference this? (emphasis as in the original).
It would be hard to look past the shape-memory response of the Roswell foil when it was sent to Wright-Patternson AFB for analysis. The USAF would have to know about this just be looking at the foil and knowing it is a metal (and one that turned out to be an alloy containing titanium). But in case there is the slightest possibility the USAF was unaware, our comment here is as follows:
"What we are happy to reveal to you (the rest can be provided at a congressional hearing if it comes down to it, unless the USAF is quick off the mark and is willing to be open and honest about what happened with the public regarding what crashed in the New Mexico desert) is that the Second Progress Report is divided into two parts. The first part contains missing pages, whereas the second part is what we have available. Already we see two notable shape-memory alloys in the second part of NiTi and TiZr.
However, we have also found in a scientific article a mention of additional shape-memory alloys of NiTiCo, NiTiCr and TiCrCo studied within the Second Progress Report. It means there is critical information in the missing pages that should have been released.
Furthermore, if you needed to understand shape-memory alloys, it is critical to create an accurate phase diagram (and hence the reason for studying and emphasising the use of "Process A" titanium in creating the alloys) to show the boundaries between the alpha and beta phases and where this extends across the composition range for the elements. Because any transformation of the crystalline structure from one phase to another through a change in temperature can potentially reveal a shape- memory response. Once you know the composition range and temperature for this boundary, it is just a matter of testing this shape-memory response by the USAF in its own laboratories at the right temperatures.
We also appreciate how much effort the USAF has gone to in the report to avoid focusing too much on the 50:50 composition ratio region for NiTi so as not to attract too much attention among scientists in this area. But one can actually make extrapolations from the titanium-rich end of the spectrum in which the report focuses on to see how the results fair in this critical known shape- memory range. Likewise a similar case can be made for the hardness and strength of NiTi and other similar alloys, which we know was important for the USAF given the known behaviour of the Roswell foil when subjected to regular beatings with a sledgehammer.
For now, we strongly recommend that the USAF start preparing a report, even create one if necessary, and make it realistic and dated to the 1947 period (i.e., before July) if it wants to avoid a possible investigation into the Roswell crash. Otherwise, it would be in the interest of the military to be honest and just explain what was found in July 1947.
We are confident that pure NiTi needed to reveal a shape-memory response was not around prior to the crash. And that is going to be a problem for the USAF more of a reason for the USAF to create a good report to avoid all the fanfare and hassles later should things start to heat up. At the very least, the USAF should explain how pure NiTi was created in reasonable quantities to build this mysterious Roswell object for the scientific community to consider it probable that the Roswell object was man-made.
Otherwise, it is time to make an important public announcement on the matter, as it should have been done more than 60 years ago."
Bragalia gave an unofficial USAF view on whether nitinol could be the Roswell foil. He wrote:
I had an email dialogue with Lt. Col. James McAndrew USAF (Retired) about his Roswell Report offering up Mogul as an explanation, etc.
He told me that he had never heard of Nitinol before reading it on the Net at the suggestion of someone, years after he had issued the AF Roswell report. He does not believe that it relates to what was reported (“only in the grossest sense”) because Nitinol requires the introduction of energy like heat energy to create the memory effect. Though he 'gives no weight' to memory metal testimony, he said that what some had 'supposedly' recalled did not require such energy introduction [i.e., at room temperature, a shape-memory alloy would not have the energy to return to its original shape].
He also told me that he did not investigate private companies like Battelle that are defense contractors as he did not have any authority to do so and cannot compel them to do anything.
I asked him why he did not interview Dee Proctor, who accompanied rancher Mac Brazel to the debris site. He said that Dee was a minor child at the time and his testimony would not be admissible in an official investigation."
As this "introduction of energy" to activate the shape memory response has been a discussion with Mr Bragalia some years back with no further developments from his side in terms of talking to a scientist to confirm or deny the claim made by the USAF official, we have decided to leave it as that. It is unlikely we can convince him otherwise. And indeed, maintaining his position is probably telling of the considerable efforts by the USAF and those working to help the organisation to convince certain troublesome independent researchers and investigators not to pursue this "shape-memory alloy" line of enquiry.
For the online reader, there are official scientific tables for the transformation temperature range of various shape memory alloys. For NiTi, a temperature as low as -50°C is perfectly acceptable to activate the shape-memory effect. With small additions of cobalt (Co), the temperature can be lowered significantly. As another example, variations in the composition ratio of the elements making up the shape memory alloy Ag-Cd can vary the transformation temperature from -190°C to -50°C. While there are a number of shape-memory alloys requiring significant heat for the transformation to take place, there are other alloys that require far less heat the kind of heat that still remains at room temperature or below.
As for claims that there were not enough firsthand witnesses for the USAF to investigate this shape-memory claim, Professor Jerry Kroth has provided a reasonable summary of the quotes in relation to this Roswell foil from various US investigators and their books (including Charles Berlitz and William Moore's The Roswell Incident) as published in his book Extraterrestrial Contacts: The Roswell Foil, UFOs, and How They Alter Our Understanding of the Modern World, 2017..
Question for Mr Bragalia: Why is it that scientists publish such low transformation temperatures in the scientific literature for some shape memory alloys?
Question posed to Mr Bragalia
After noticing the way Mr Bragalia ends his line of questioning with us and wanting us to provide information on documents he has found, and suddenly Professor Kroth begins his with SUNRISE and vice versa, we posed a question to Mr Bragalia on 10 February 2021:
"In all of yours and your friends (the very quiet ones hiding in the background of Tom Carey and Don Schmidt) dealings with various witnesses in the United States, has the name Mr J. Kroth ever crossed your desk in any way?"
After sending this, things have gone quiet with Mr Bragalia. We don't expect there will be a reply for this.
Professor Jerry Kroth
An intriguing individual. He only appeared after Mr Bragalia contacted SUNRISE about our research work. There is also a pattern developing in the sense that if Mr Bragalia has finished his enquiry with us, Professor Kroth will commence his very soon after, or vice versa. Difficult at first to notice, but in recent times, this pattern is much more obvious. It is unclear whether Kroth is part of the trio of Roswell investigators or is privately and independently carrying out social research of his own to understand why people might believe in UFOs and Roswell and somehow coincidentally knew when to talk to SUNRISE at the right times.
Professor Kroth's first communications with SUNRISE began about 4 years ago. It was then that he provided us with a story he allegedly had in the 1960s in which as a teacher at a Michigan school, he was shown in 1965 a shape-memory material by a young female student. She claimed it came from her father who worked in the USAF, quite possibly at Wright-Patterson AFB. Kroth claims to have tried to cut the material with a pair of scissors and realised he couldn't. He scrunched up the material into a ball (roughly the size of a large marble) and let it go to see that it returned to its original shape. However, key differences in his description of the material compared to NiTi and the Roswell foil has been noted by us. In particular, he thought the material he held was silvery in colour, not dark-greyish. He also seems to be confused as to whether the material he held was a metal or plastic (compared to the firsthand witnesses of the Roswell case who were certain the Roswell foil they saw and touched was a metal of some sort). He would be informed by other scientists of possible man-made materials that could match his observations, a number of which were clearly plastics and Kroth needed to get samples to find out. It is highly unusual for Kroth not to know whether the material he held was a metal. As his story is well outside the timeframe for the Roswell incident with certain key differences in his observations, we are unable to provide much information in his case other than what we know already about the Roswell foil and the studies carried out by the USAF and the Battelle Memorial Institute in the late 1940s.
According to the Huffington Post, Professor Jerry Kroth, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor in the graduate counselling psychology program at Santa Clara University. His areas of teaching include psychotherapy and personality theory, dreamwork, and research methods.
Kroth's first email in 2020
After a few years not hearing from Professor Kroth, and just after Mr Bragalia stopped talking to us, the first email from Kroth appeared on 4 November 2020. He mentioned his 2017 book, Extraterrestrial Contacts: the Roswell foil, UFOs, and How They Alter our Understanding of the Modern World and gave us an indication of an update edition arriving in a few months time. We wrote back on our thoughts on his 2017 edition.
Regarding his view on nitinol, Kroth stated in his book:
"The four samples of Nitinol I purchased also did not conform to my magic product's characteristics. One Nitinol foil was rigid (mine was quite elastic), thick (mine was paper thin), and I could cut it with scissors the first time I tried (my 1965 material couldn't be cut at all). Finally, it didn't display shape memory whatsoever at room temperature. Another sample of so-called '0.22 mm Nitinol Shape Memory Alloy muscle foil' was gray instead of silvery, very tough (not pliable), showed no signs of shape memory at room temperature, and could easily be cut with scissors."
"We have tested a couple of so-called nitinol samples sold to the public from the U.S. and noted their impure nature. If they contained mostly nickel and titanium, they were clearly contaminated. A pure sample of nitinol has a more sharply defined transformation temperature within a couple of degrees (or less the more impurities are removed). We tested one sheet sample claimed to be a room temperature nitinol by putting it in a freezer and the metal would not soften or allow greater flexibility in the alloy. We concluded the samples received were *CRAP* to put it mildly. We concur with your observations here."
Kroth's on the foil's colour
"A Nitinol wire I tested was the wrong colour..."
Pure nitinol should be dark-greyish in colour. If what you saw was silvery, it is either another shape memory alloy (making it more of a mystery for the foil you claimed to have seen for the time frame when you saw it as no known alloy existed in the scientific literature that was anywhere near the elastic capabilities of Nitinol), or the sample you received had a silvery coating sprayed on it. But whatever it was you saw, the only thing tough enough (if prepared correctly), looks exactly like a metal (i.e., not a polymer), and flexible enough and still exhibit a shape memory response, would have to be nitinol. The few shape-memory alloys observed prior to the 1960s were considered oddities and none of them excited scientists to want to study them for their shape-memory effect and so create a whole branch of science in this field mainly because of the weak nature of their shape memory responses; and certainly the alloys were not tough enough to withstand the kind of treatment you had subjected your foil to.
Nitinol samples received by Kroth were not tough enough
"One Nitinol foil was rigid (mine was quite elastic), thick (mine was paper thin), and I could cut it with scissors the first time I tried (my 1965 material couldn't be cut at all)."
We responded by saying:
"If prepared correctly and the shape-memory response fully activated, Nitinol should be tough enough to wishstand cutting with a pair of scissors or puncturing with a pointy instrument. See this article at https://www.sbir.gov/sbirsearch/detail/171954. It shows that nitinol can be used as a coating (to reduce costs) to create a puncture-resistant armor."
Nitinol samples received by Kroth were not flexible and had limited shape memory responses
"Still it was much too bulky and when I bent it into a ball it unwound, but only by about 50 percent, while my 1965 foil instantly unwound to 100 percent of its former flat shape."
Again this is likely because the nitinol samples sold in the United States to the public are of poor quality. To determine just how flexible this mysterious foil he allegedly saw in the 1960s was, we directed Kroth to a YouTube video from the EngineerGuy on nitinol. We wrote:
"Perhaps we can ask you to confirm this observation with your mystery foil by looking at this YouTube video on superelastic nitinol: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wI-qAxKJoSU. We note how flexible a thin wire of superelastic nitinol is from the video between 7 mins 50 sec to 8 mins 30 seconds. And it also shows a stent made of this alloy and how he scrunches it up after 8 mins and 30 seconds. Do any of these scenes showing the flexibility of nitinol remind you of your foil (leaving aside any differences in the colour)?"
Kroth notes many differences in the sample of nitinol compared to his own personal experiences
"Yes the video you sent on Nitinol wire has one characteristic, shape memory which (in the latter part of the video) appears to return to its original shape at room temperature.
However, the wire is thicker than the foil I held and, of course, is the wrong color, and, of course, it is wire not a thin film."
We thought Kroth was not observing the level of flexibility in the way the nitinol stent could be scrunched up. The stent uses ultrathin nitinol wires carefully prepared to display its flexibility and shape memory response at room temperature within its "superelastic" phase. It turns out the manufacturer of this stent (Kelloggs Research Labs) uses wires as thin as 0.015mm. The same thickness in a sheet of superelastic nitinol should display the same level of scrunchiness with one hand, it will just look more dramatic.
We asked Kroth for his views on how well the EngineerGuy could scrunch up the stent in one hand and let it go for the stent to return to its original shape.
Kroth believes there is no man-made material to match what he saw
Kroth remains unconvinced by the video and needs to see an example in sheet form.
At his request, we provided Professor Kroth with the manufacturer's web site for the nitinol products used by the EngineerGuy. However, we do note that the manufacturer, as with other US companies, seem to struggle in making ultra-thin nitinol sheets thinner than, say, 0.1mm (only wires can be made very thin down to 0.015mm). Either we have reached a technological limit in how far nitinol can be pressed into thin sheets, or there is not enough interest by the public in ultra-thin nitinol sheets (is there a useful practical application other than as a novelty toy?). A standard sheet of 80gsm paper has a thickness of 0.065mm. We suspect a nitinol sheet needs to be no thicker than 0.02mm to really show the flexibility and shape-memory effect that Kroth is looking for. Even so, the ultra-thin wires of the stent should be enough to show just how flexible nitinol is at a thin enough dimension.
In fact, the wires making up the stent should jog Mr Kroth's memory and remind him of the foil he saw in the 1960s.
Despite the severe bending of the stent in one hand and almost scrunching it up as shown in the video, Kroth believes nitinol is not flexible enough when he said:
"As far as scrunching goes, imagine a five inch square of thin material scrunched down to the size of a marble, and then let loose it returns to flat and increased at room temperature in three seconds. Got any of that stuff for me?
We beg to differ. It depends on how thin nitinol is manufactured at this superelastic and highly pure phase.
Kroth believes in an extraterrestrial shape-memory foil in the 1960s
As Kroth said:
"I'm still holding to the position that I was holding a piece of Roswell foil until proved otherwise.
My criteria for refuting that proposition is this: (1) I want to hold any material in my hands today in 2020 with those characteristics and I still have no candidate, and (2) that material had to be available in 1965."
Kroth asks whether SUNRISE believes on two points
"Now I believe that you are a believer in the Roswell event and how Battelle worked on the extraterrestrial material. Am I correct in that assumption?"
Well, it is not what we believe but on how likely certain things could have occurred based on the evidence gathered. For a complete response from us, here is what we wrote:
- the testimonial evidence provided by a reasonable number of firsthand witnesses, including details of where the materials were found (i.e., in New Mexico on a rancher's property, with the rancher himself and his family, Major Jesse Marcel, and at least one reporter knowing precisely where the materials had landed as well as seeing where the military convoy went to pick up the materials within days of the rancher finding the materials);
- the effort by the USAF to find the most likely trajectory of a balloon that it thought could have landed on the rancher's property as well as showing the remains of a balloon to a reporter named James Bond Johnson (of which photographs were taken) to help explain the Roswell event and even right down to mentioning where the materials were found (i.e., one of the local ranchers' property in New Mexico) in a press release issued by the Roswell military base, and in accepting the Roswell event as having probably occurred in the USAF Roswell Report released in the 1990s to help explain the long-standing secrecy and the number of witnesses acknowledging the event; and
- our efforts to uncover important scientific information about the only dark-greyish and most pronounced shape-memory alloy known at the time when the first highly pure titanium alloys were just starting to get produced after the Roswell event in the United States (and no where else in the world was doing this work), including physical properties that would support the preliminary tests performed at the Roswell military base on the original Roswell foil, as well as finding a direct interest by the USAF in this dark-greyish titanium-based shape-memory alloy so soon after the event (i.e., NiTi, NiTiCo etc.),
it is reasonable to assume that the Roswell event is real.
Regarding your statement "...Battelle worked on the extraterrestrial material" the evidence is not conclusive that it did. It is possible that under secrecy and through a formalised contract with the USAF that this could have occurred, but there is no evidence of a written contract to confirm it. What we do know is that the materials did end up for analysis at Wright-Patterson AFB as confirmed by several media outlets (we have no reason to doubt the media's claim in this regard). From there, certain individuals at the base, made a decision to get external scientific assistance to understand certain titanium-based alloys. With the nation's best and most reputable scientific institution available at hand, Battelle was chosen to assist with the USAF's work. Of interest to the USAF at the time were not just certain titanium-based alloys, but of finding ways to reduce the impurity in titanium significantly as it was felt by those at Wright-Patterson AFB involved in the analysis of the Roswell foil and study of selected alloys that such a reduction in the contamination would make a significant advancement in their understanding of those alloys. The choice of alloys selected for the USAF/Battelle study are interesting in their own right in the sense that what was studied showed an unusually significant number of alloys now understood by the scientific community to exhibit a shape-memory response. They included, but not limited to, NiTi, TiZr, NiTiCo, and NiTiCr, to name a few. Indeed, it is our opinion that there is a high probability more shape-memory alloys will be revealed in other progress reports not yet de-classified and released to the public. And the timing for studying these alloys and in finding ways to attain a much higher purity level so soon after the Roswell event is unlikely to be a coincidence. We think there is something significant to be looked at here.
It is not so much that Battelle had worked on the extraterrestrial material. Rather, it is our view, based on the evidence at hand from scientific articles and available de-classified progress reports, that the USAF had probably seeded the main composition details of the original Roswell foil to Battelle via NiTi and asked Battelle to determine where the dual crystalline structures of the alloy extends mainly in the titanium-rich end of the composition (considered the least known due to the impurity issue) in order for the USAF to determine how far the shape memory response would extend. But to be certain, samples had to be made by Battelle at different composition ratios and these were later sent together with the latest progress reports to USAF for testing.
As the amount of highly pure titanium slowly increased and equipment to manufacture titanium alloys improved, it is likely the USAF continued secretly in its study at Wright-Patterson, mainly around the mid-range composition for NiTi as well as understand how the alloy attained its considerable hardness in order to resist cutting and piercing in such a remarkable way compared to other known man-made materials.
We are fairly confident that the Roswell foil must contain titanium (as supported by the testimony of one military general who worked at Wright-Patterson AFB at around the time of the studies with Battelle), and its shape-memory response must allude to an alloy of some sort (as no single metal element can exhibit a shape-memory response and certainly not to the level reported by the witnesses in the Roswell foil). We are dealing with a titanium-based alloy. But because the majority of witnesses have reported a dark-greyish looking foil, looking like dirty stainless steel and certainly not the bright silvery color reminiscent of aluminium, but a darker version more akin to lead or tinfoil, and one that was definitely a metal, not a plastic, the only notable titanium-based alloy having that colour as well as displaying a shape-memory response that is as significant as the one purportedly observed in the Roswell foil, shows considerable hardness, and can withstand the high-temperatures of a blow torch, is almost certainly has to be NiTi or some derivative of that alloy of the form NiTiX where X is another element added in small amounts (less than 3 percent) to help enhance certain physical properties, such as extending the transformation temperature range of the shape memory response to outside the standard NiTi range (e.g., cobalt).
One could argue that all this work by the USAF on NiTi and other shape-memory alloys could be a coincidence if, for any reason, the study into NiTi had been carried out, say, in the 1960s, which is considered a long time after the Roswell event. But as history would have it, this is not the case. NiTi and certain other derivatives of this alloy, not to mention other titanium-based shape-memory alloys, had been the subject of considerable interest to the USAF just after the Roswell event. Indeed the first progress reports to come out on titanium-based alloys from Battelle including NiTi would be dated early 1948.
It is unlikely the work into NiTi was a coincidence.
NiTi must be related to the original Roswell foil in some way given the short time frame the USAF had allowed itself to study titanium-based alloys so soon after the Roswell event and the lack of any other dark-greyish shape-memory alloy to match the witnesses' claims in the Roswell foil within the USAF/Battelle study.
Of course, the only problem in stating it must be NiTi or some derivative of this alloy is the lack of openness from the USAF in acknowledging whether this is true or not despite the more than 60 years the controversy has persisted and how many witnesses have not been given a proper explanation. But more importantly, the biggest problem we have is how the USAF could have made this alloy in 1947, in sufficient quantities, and to the level of purity required to explain the amount of the foil discovered on a local rancher's property and its pronounced shape-memory effect, as well as its toughness using titanium as a main alloy ingredient. We are talking about a fairly sizeable object. In fact, there has been talk of bodies recovered from this event as the Roswell literature shows. Apparently, these bodies were found in association with this wreckage either not far from the initial wreckage site according to some military witnesses involved in the recovery operation as well as the reporter who tried to follow the convoy of trucks to the recovery operation only to be forcibly taken to the Roswell base where he later overhead the military people talking about bodies being recovered, and certainly at the final resting point for the main body of the flying object as observed by other witnesses. In fact, the word "victims" note the use of the plural form was used in a secret memo held by General Ramey in his office when it was inadvertently faced towards Mr Johnson's camera and recorded on the negative film. We should expect the object to be quite large. Yet strangely we have never heard of American families grieving at the time for their lost ones in this allegedly secret military experiment that had somehow managed to use a significant amount of a titanium-based dark-greyish shape-memory alloy for its outer skin.
If the Roswell event was meant to be man-made, the technology to make the alloy was simply not there prior to the Roswell event and certainly not in adequate quantities in the latter half of 1947 when we learn only the smallest of samples of very pure titanium and NiTi had begun to trickle out of the New York University thanks to a young scientist who came out of the USAF to become a full professor at NYU and chose to study titanium and the alloy itself using the world's first vacuum furnace developed by Battelle and made available to the university.
But if there is an explanation for all of this, including a man-made description of the Roswell object and how it was manufactured, the USAF are the only ones who can give a definitive report on the matter.
If the USAF cannot provide this final report to the public dated prior to the Roswell event to explain how it managed to create this alloy, what it was testing, and who died in the crash, then this would have to be the closest we would ever get to supporting an "extraterrestrial" origin in the Roswell object.
However, we remain open-minded to the possibility that the USAF could have a logical and simple man-made explanation. Needless to say, we look forward to hearing what this is. Because, at the end of the day, this is the only way we can truly put to rest this lingering controversy we know today as the "Roswell event" of early July 1947."
Kroth asks whether SUNRISE believes in a room temperature shape memory effect in nitinol and whether it exists
"You say that you believe Nitinol with shape memory at room temperature with the appropriate degree of thinness exists. Well I would ask two questions: (1) Did it exist in 1965 when I handled the material and (2) where can I purchase it now to test out your hypothesis? Everything I ever ordered or bought, including a few varieties of nitinol never even came close."
We essentially said:
Fortunately it isn't a "belief". We have seen nitinol in action at room temperature with a sample of our own (admittedly a thick wire). In your situation, things have improved dramatically with irrefutable evidence of this alloy in action on YouTube and, more importantly, in a ultra-thin form. As an engineer has shown (and we are confident it is not an example of fake news or digital trickery), he could scrunch up a nitinol stent made of ultra-thin nitinol wire and let it go at room temperature. Quite dramatic and reminds us greatly of how you have described your experiences of the "silvery" flat shape-memory material in 1965. However, in your situation, there are enough oddities to say that we cannot be certain it was nitinol. Among the differences we have noted include your description of the color, being more "silvery" as you said. Interesting. Perhaps it really is a thinness issue that results in the reflected light showing more of the silvery parts of the material. Otherwise an alloy like TiZr would fit the bill in the colour department, but unfortunately the shape memory effect is not quite as dramatic as nitinol and the temperature range has to be much higher to see this effect. On top of that, you were checking plastics to see how closely they might match your "experience" as if you are not certain what you saw was a metal. This is in stark contrast to the Roswell case in which the witnesses who did see and handle the Roswell foil were certain it was a metal (or alloy) of some sort and wouldn't think otherwise. Add to this the fact that your experience occurred much later (at least 15 years later), and things get a lot harder for anyone to be certain it is nitinol in your case. Certainly nitinol existed in your time in whatever purity the USAF had been working on. So technically, the USAF could have made nitinol to behave in the way you have described it if it is thin enough. Is there another material that could have achieved this shape memory effect? Perhaps, except other aspects of your observation such as the difficulty in cutting and piercing is reducing the options to very limited materials. They have to be materials that show a high level of hardness to resist penetrations.
Coincidence or not, we know that nitinol hardens over time with regular cold working of the alloy. We have played with the material and observed this hardening effect. There are papers in the scientific literature that discuss the hardness property of nitinol in the context of developing lightweight yet strong and very hard armour. It looks very much like the scientific community is fairly confident a sheet of nitinol can resist piercing and cutting when prepared and aged appropriately.
But was it really nitinol that you saw? That's the 64 thousand dollar question. Based on what you have said, something is telling us it probably wasn't. However, when it comes to the Roswell case, we are more than 95 per cent certain it is nitinol (or a derivative of that alloy in the form of NiTiX, where X is a third element added in small quantities, such as cobalt, to enhance the engineering qualities of the alloy while retaining its shape-memory effect). We have enough USAF reports very soon after the event to reveal the only really distinct dark-greyish alloy with significant (and at the time, the world's most powerful) shape-memory effect. It looks and feels like a metal. It can be made very tough to resist cutting and piercing. It is lightweight and tough enough for aerospace applications. The kind of thing that if the USAF had constructed a flying machine to contain a significant amount of a shape-memory alloy, nitinol would be ideal. And we know the Roswell foil and all the rest of the original wreckage ended up at Wright-Patterson AFB for analysis, which is the same place that issued very soon after the event a request to the Battelle Memorial Institute to look at nitinol. Yet despite all this, we have to leave open a little doubt in case the USAF can provide a reasonable explanation by way of a report dated prior to July 1947 to show of another metal or alloy capable of reproducing the physical characteristics and colour of nitinol / Roswell foil. However, while the USAF remains unwilling to show an alternative alloy capable of achieving what the witnesses saw in July 1947, nitinol remains the best bet for those original witnesses. In your case, unfortunately, there are enough differences to suggest that another material could be responsible.
If you are still interested in checking, the best consumer option for youand one that is potentially within the thinness range of what you are looking forwas from the Kelloggs Research Lab. The engineer guy we mentioned above said he obtained his ultra-thin nitinol wire that activated its shape memory response at room temperature from this company. As for a sheet version (the kind you would prefer to see to be absolutely certain and leave no doubt in your mind if this is the material you saw), it appears that no one in the United States offers ultra-thin nitinol sheets as a consumer product, which is unusual. Surely, consumers would be fascinated in seeing a metal so incredibly thin like the cooking aluminium foil you get from the supermarket and watch it unfold by itself. If you haven't checked the ultra-thin wire as yet, we strongly recommend that you do. It will be the closest thing to showing how well it scrunches up and unfolds when you let it go...at room temperature, of course!
To get a sheet of nitinol made of the required thickness, it looks like we have to put in a request to get one made either through a university with the right equipment, or talk to KRL or some other nitinol manufacturer. It won't be cheap. If it can be made, we wouldn't be surprised if a one-off could cost $2,000 or more. Can you afford that? That is why we think the ultrathin wires are much better to look at, and should give you a very good insight into your own experiences. The wire should tell you very quickly if it is the material you saw or not.
And if you say it isn't the same, then we cannot say it is nitinol in your case. Your experience of the material you saw in 1965 is different than the Roswell foil with the only similarity being that both materials could return to their original shape (and that there was a USAF connection in both situations).
Which means also that the USAF were still having an interest in shape-memory alloys in the 1960s but for some reason have chosen not to use it to build fighter jets except in that one and only experimental aircraft in July 1947. Surely it couldn't be a manufacturing issue or high costs since the military could make vast amounts of the shape-memory alloy to make the aircraft.
However, given the way things are looking at the moment, it would appear that there is a technological challenge in making sheets at the ultra thin range. And if that is the case, it puts the USAF in a more difficult position of explaining how it managed to create a large amount of nitinol in sheet form to cover the surface of an experimental aircraft carrying at least half a dozen pilots and/or crew members. It now looks like the report will not only have to explain an alternative alloy that matches nitinol prior to 1947, but also the manufacturing techniques used to roll out very thin sheets, especially for a tough titanium-based alloy like nitinol.
Update 4 February 2021
A US nitinol manufacturer has sent a reply to SUNRISE regarding ultra-thin nitinol sheets. The representative (name given) said his company do not produce ultra-thin nitinol sheets. He gave the name of another manufacturer that could help. He also added:
"Later in 2021 we may have some foils closer to 0.010mm but still very early R&D".
When asked about why nitinol sheets at very thin dimensions are difficult to manufacture, the representatives of this company and others appear unwilling to explain citing in one example as a "company policy" not to provide "production process information" while the majority have choosing to keep quiet (one must assume for the same reason). However, the most likely reason is because when compressing nitinol under high pressure, the nickel and titanium atoms agitating naturally in the alloy come within shorter distances resulting in the electrons emitting higher frequency radiation. This naturally heats up the alloy (just like a star compressed to a smaller dimension causes it to get hotter). It is the shape-memory response when heated leading to a greater hardness of the alloy is what's stopping manufacturers from achieving ultra-thin dimensions in sheet form, as there is no equipment as of February 2021 to achieve this.
This now makes it highly unlikely that the USAF could have produced nitinol as thin as a sheet of newspaper or the foil in a cigarette packet in 1947. It means the Roswell object is in the category of not only being "artificially-made" by whoever, but no one in the world had the technology to make the object. In other words, it is looking like the Roswell object and the "victims" found were from an exotic origin.
In the game of chess, this could be the equivalent of a scientific "checkmate" against the USAF's current position on the matter.
We think it is time the USAF releases the report on how it believes the object was manufactured, or make a public announcement on what was found and release the evidence for scientific evaluation.