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Video Surveillance Drone? Apparent Drone Sighted Over Elgin Headed Toward Chicago Week Before NATO Summit

Wed May 16 2012 3:34 pm
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VIDEO: A drone UAV spotted in the Elgin area on Saturday, May 12, 2012.

A man with a video camera at a soccer field in Elgin, Illinois has captured on May 12, 2012 what appears to be a drone unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) that he reports was flying toward Chicago the weekend before the NATO Summit.

See also …
Allegedly a fake: The Cardinal Chicago NATO UAV Drone Over Elgin a Fake? HOAX Killer Provides Rationale with Perspective Analysis

The Cardinal NATO Drone Chicago: MQ-1 Predator or MQ-9 Reaper Over Elgin?

Critics have claimed that the video is fake because the aircraft is banking left, but traveling straight. However, the flight behavior might be what you would see in a flight that was experiencing steady winds from the northeast. The weather station at O’Hare International Airport reported steady winds in the 12.7 mph to 18.4 mph range and gusts in the 19.6 mph to 25.3 mph range on Sunday May 12, 2012. Also, steady winds in the 8.1 to 12.7 mph range and gusts in the 19.6 to 20.7 mph range were reported on May 12, 2012 — a little closer to Elgin at DuPage Airport. Others critics have claimed that the high winds would have thrown that aircraft around a little more.

There is also some skepticism because the video camera was not panned to the right to follow the aircraft — something critics say fakers would do if they did not have a posterior-oblique image of the aircraft to superimpose. However, the camera man might have lost sight of it in the camera’s viewfinder or LCD display, decided he had a good enough shot already, and then enjoyed watching the rest of the flight with his own eyes. It is not easy to catch small objects in the viewfinder of a camera, and a videographer doesn’t have much time to capture the moving image — especially if it wasn’t expected or if the camera operator isn’t used to tracking aircraft with a camera. It is common to zoom in and out to find the aircraft in the field of vision, or to try to get it in focus when autofocus is on. It is hard enough to capture some aircraft — even when they are expected.

The sound of the UAV has also been questioned. Up close, UAV aircraft have a distinct propeller engine sound — especially from behind. The sound of the aircraft over Elgin does not have a distinct propeller engine sound, but it is at a considerable distance at constant speed with the associated aerodynamic noise of air flow around the blades louder than the propeller engine noise. But one also could conclude it’s the sound of a jet turbine.

Up close video of MQ-1 Predator MQ-9 Reaper UAV Operations in 2011 with distinct prop sound. However, sound at 0:53 is air rushing aerodynamic noise without propeller engine noise.


Unmanned military aircraft have tracked and killed terrorists overseas. Their civilian cousins are now in demand by those wanting a bird’s-eye view that’s too impractical or dangerous for conventional planes or helicopters to get.

In 2002 the Pentagon owned 50 unmanned predator drones, but today the number has ballooned to over 7,000. Additionally the Pentagon has asked Congress for an extra $5 billion to expand the drone program.

Judge Andrew Napolitano: “Government needs a search warrant to use drones to spy on American citizens.”

Studio B Fox Anchor Shepard Smith: There “could be 30,000 drones flying overhead within the next decade.” … no legislation to limit what they can see … can analyze video data for up to 90 days.

View Larger Map of Elgin and Chicago …

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CLEAR SKIES?  Weather Data for Wednesday, May 16th, 2012

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