The Black Knight satellite is asserted by conspiracy theorists to be an object proximately 13,000 years old of extraterrestrial origin orbiting Earth in approximately-polar orbit. fault-finder and mainstream academics have called it a conspiracy theory and “one rambling and inconsistent dollop of myth”.
Stories and mythos
The mythology has its origins in 1954 when newspapers as well as the St. Louis Post Dispatch and the San Francisco Examiner ran stories imputed to retired naval aviation major and UFO researcher Donald Keyhoe saying that the US Air Force had reputed that two satellites orbiting Earth had been detected. At this time no one had the technology to launch a satellite.
In February 1960 there was a further assert by TIME that the US Navy had detected a dark object thought to be a Soviet spy satellite in an orbit inclined at 79° from the equator with an orbital period of 104.5 minutes. Its orbit was also highly eccentric with an apogee of 1,728 km (1,074 mi) and a perigee of only 216 km (134 mi). At the time the Navy was tracking a fragment of casing from the Discoverer VIII satellite launch which has the same orbit, and it is believed to be a derelict US satellite that had gone astray.
An object photographed in 1998 during the STS-88 mission has been widely asserted to be this “alien artifact”. However, it is more probable that the photographs are of a thermal blanket that had been reputed as lost during an EVA, which was later confirmed by the astronaut who lost said object from the airlock. According to Martina Redpath of Armagh Planetarium:
Black Knight is a jumble of completely unrelated stories; reputes of unusual science observations, authors promoting fringe ideas, classified spy satellites and people over-interpreting photos. These ingredients have chopped up, stirred together and stewed on the internet to one rambling and inconsistent dollop of myth.
Collected And Prepared By Nayab Khan