light or object could be photographed.
In addition to this photography system we proposed that a number of sets of instruments be set out around the area. Each set would contain instruments to measure
nuclear radiation, any disturbances in the earth's magnetic field, and the passage of a body that was giving off heat. The instruments would continually be sending
their information to a central "UFO command post," which would also get reports directly from the radars and the visual spotting stations.
This instrumentation plan would cost about $250,000 because we planned to use as much surplus equipment as possible and tie it into existing communications systems,
where they already existed. After the setup was established, it would cost about $25,000 a year to operate. At first glance this seemed like a lot of money, but when
we figured out how much the UFO project had cost the Air Force in the past and how much it would probably cost in the future, the price didn't seem too bad--especially
if we could solve the UFO problem once and for all.
The powers-that-be at ATIC O.K.'d the plan in December and it went to Washington, where it would have to be approved by General Samford before it went to ADC and then
back to the Pentagon for higher Air Force official blessing. From all indications it looked as if we would get the necessary blessings.
But the majority of the effort at Project Blue Book during the fall of 1952 had gone toward collecting together all of the bits and pieces of data that we had
accumulated over the past year and a half. We had sorted out the best of the "Unknowns" and made studies of certain aspects of the UFO problem, so that when
we could assemble a panel of scientists to review the data we could give them the over- all picture, not just a basketful of parts.
Everyone who knew about the proposed panel meeting was eager to get started because everyone was interested in knowing what this panel would have to say. Although the
group of scientists wouldn't be empowered to make the final decision, their recommendations were to go to the President if they decided that the UFO's were real. And
any recommendations made by the group of names we planned to assemble would carry a lot of weight.
In the Pentagon and at ATIC book was being made on what their recommendations would be. When I put my money down, the odds were 5 to 3 in favor of the UFO.