The UFO encounters off the island of Trindade off the coast of Brazil are exciting not only as they were witnessed by Navy personnel, but because several photographs were captured of the disc-shaped object. Furthermore, despite having been subject to several intense examinations, the pictures have been officially validated as genuine and authentic images of an unknown aerial object. Adding even more credibility to this spate of sightings in the late 1950s is that they were often witnessed by multiple people, some of whom enjoyed particularly high-ranking positions in the Brazilian Navy.
There were also several other particularly intriguing UFO encounters throughout Brazil during this time, often along the coastal areas that looked out on the Atlantic Ocean. And some of these other incidents also resulted in photographs – ones that showed very similar objects to that captured off the coast of Trindade Island. Might it be that at least some of these sightings were connected? Might the occupants of these seemingly otherworldly vehicles be part of the same alien reconnaissance mission?
Much of what follows is based on the research and investigation of Jerry Clark for the Center for UFO Studies, although the sightings and the photographs of the Trindade Island UFO encounters continue to be studied and researched today. And remain valid and intriguing pieces of the UFO puzzle for enthusiasts and researchers alike.
- 1 An Extraterrestrial Interest In Human Activity?
- 2 Research Data Stolen From The Skies
- 3 A “Gray, Metallic, Solid-Looking Object” Off The Island’s Coast
- 4 Declared Official By The Brazilian Navy
- 5 Leaked Documents And Allegations Of It All Being A Hoax
- 6 Long History Of UFO Sightings In Brazil Since At Least The Late-1940s
- 7 An Almost Identical Saturn-Like Object Two Decades Later
- 8 Brazil Remains One Of The Most Active Place For UFOs Today
An Extraterrestrial Interest In Human Activity?
The sighting and subsequent photographs that would follow as a result of plans put into motion in October 1957, when the Brazilian Navy established a base on the island of Trindade for scientific research. 
The island – which is completely unoccupied – is around 600 miles off the coast of Brazil in the South Atlantic Ocean. From this base, scientists would conduct research in various fields, including oceanographic and meteorological.
These would involve launching weather balloons each day into the upper atmosphere, that would then explode, sending research instruments that would collect data as they came back to earth on an automatic parachute. Base personnel would then locate and collect these instruments so the data could be logged and studied.
However, it wasn’t long before those involved in the tests noticed strange, metallic disc-shaped crafts appearing in the sky near the balloons, almost as if they were monitoring what was taking place.
For example, at just before 8 am on 1st January 1958, a sudden bright light was witnessed moving across the sky, appearing “like a mirror reflecting sunlight”. What’s more, this sighting was witnessed by almost the entire base. The following evening, and around 400 miles away, a circular orange object approached the Navy vessel Triunfo and circled it several times. This continued for around 10 minutes before the bizarre object took with great speed and disappeared.
These incidents were just the first of many.
Research Data Stolen From The Skies
On the morning of 6th January, the chief of the base, Commander Carlos Bacellar oversaw the daily launch of the weather balloon. The morning was bright and sunny and largely blue skies – aside, that was, for a single group of clouds at an approximate altitude of 14,000 feet. Although he didn’t know it, what Bacellar thought was another standard uneventful balloon launch would quickly become one of the most mind-blowing encounters of the entire project.
Bacellar had returned inside the base and was listening to the signals being sent out by the weather balloon. Then, for no reason whatsoever, everything stopped. With no signals coming through, the commander returned outside in order to view the balloon.
To begin with, the balloon was ascending as it should. However, to Bacellar’s disbelief, almost as soon as it touched the single bank of clouds, it rushed upward as if it had been physically pulled up by some invisible force. Nothing was seen of the balloon for 10 minutes. Then, it came back into view once more, only now it was above the cloud. Unbelievably, the research instruments had been entirely removed.
Things would turn even stranger several moments later when a metallic, silver crescent-shaped object came out of the cloud and headed off into the distance.
Just over a week later, the objects appeared once more in the region. Only this time, one witness would capture photographic evidence of their presence.
A “Gray, Metallic, Solid-Looking Object” Off The Island’s Coast
At just after noon on the 16th of January the boat the Almirante Saldanha was off the south coast of Trindade waiting to set off the Rio de Janeiro. All of the crew and many of the passengers on board, however, would soon notice a strange, shiny object approaching them.
One of those who witnessed the approaching anomalous object was a photographer, Almiro Barauna. He would later tell journalist, Joao Martins that as he was making his to way to the deck on the afternoon in question, two of the navy officers were rushing toward him attempting to divert his attention to the sky. Among the commotion, he could hear them say something about a “bright object approaching the island”.
He struggled to see what they were looking at, to begin with. Then, he caught sight of “the flash it emitted”. He suddenly realized just how close to the island it was. As it reflected the sunlight, it appeared to “glitter” somewhat. Realizing he had his camera in his hands, he raised it to his eye, pointed it at the bizarre craft, and pressed down on the shutter.
After he had snapped the first two pictures, the object disappeared from their view for several moments behind the peaks of the island. When it reappeared, it seemed much bigger in size and was now moving in the opposite direction. It was also moving with much more pace than before. Once more, he turned the camera in the object’s direction and captured a third photograph. He attempted to capture more, but by this time the object was moving at such a speed that they were nothing but a blurred mess. He also struggled to set the camera straight as he was being pushed from all sides as people rushed toward the main deck in order to see the object for themselves.
The craft was now heading back in the direction it had arrived, going back out to sea. Barauna managed to raise the camera once more, using the last available film to capture the craft as it disappeared into the distance.
He would later describe the object as “gray, metallic, and solid-looking”. He would further state that a “greenish haze or mist” appeared to surround it as it moved and that there was a ring that appeared to run around its middle.
Barauna would have the photographs developed around an hour later. However, as there was no photographic paper on board, only the negatives were immediately available. Initially, it appeared as if the object had not been captured. However, after viewing them more clearly, all present could see the bizarre craft.
When the vessel finally set off to Rio de Janeiro, Barauna remained on board, and took the negatives with him. He would ultimately develop the pictures at his home studio and would contact Commander Bacellar immediately after doing so. Bacellar would take the photographs to the Navy Ministry, returning them to Barauna 48 hours later.
However, not long after the pictures were returned, Barauna himself was summoned to Navy headquarters. Once there, he was questioned extensively about the pictures and the sighting itself. Meanwhile, the pictures were undergoing extensive examinations for signs of tampering. None were discovered and the pictures were passed by the Navy as authentic. A short time after that, they were officially released to the press.
What followed was a media frenzy for information on the sighting, and interviews with the witnesses. It also sparked the interest of various UFO investigators. One of these was Olavo Fontes. He was told by an anonymous source in the Brazilian Navy that radar had tracked an unknown object in the region the previous day.
Even more intriguing, another sighting of an object that matched the description of that witnessed from the deck of the Almirante Saldanha occurred less than 10 hours earlier. At around 2:30 am on the morning in question, the chief of surgery at Rio hospital, Ezio Azevedo Fundao, witnessed the object off the coast in the direction of Trindade Island along with other members of his family. Even more intriguing, at approximately the same time, an identical object in the same location was witnessed by several of the crew of the Tridente navy vessel.
Leaked Documents And Allegations Of It All Being A Hoax
As the weeks went on and further witnesses came forward, more and more information began to seep from the pages of the newspapers and into the public arena.
According to one report, at the time of the actual sighting, almost all of the ship’s navigational equipment began to malfunction, as did their communication systems. Barauna himself would state in an interview decades later, that just before people began noticing the metallic shiny object, all of the power on the ship had suddenly cut out. Interestingly, the navy did not comment on this aspect of the incident, and, according to the writer of the article (Paulo Campos), they considered this aspect of the encounter a “top-secret fact”.
The case continued to fascinate the UFO community, as well as the Brazilian public, in general. However, it wasn’t until several years later, in 1964, that further information would enter the public arena via leaked documents to researcher and investigator, Corel Lorenzen.
According to the official Navy documents – which were the result of a report the House of Representatives had ordered of the navy, a report that had, until now, remained secret – ultimately concluded that the sighting and photographs “permit the admission that there are indications of the existence of unidentified aerial objects”.
What is interesting is that just prior to these documents being leaked to Lorenzen, UFO debunker, Donald Menzel had accused Barauna of completely faking the pictures, and of doing so by using double exposure. He would even repeat these allegations several years later in a book, claiming to detail exactly how it was achieved.
What Menzel never mentioned – or more appropriately, purposely left out – is the sheer number of witnesses who saw the object with their own eyes.
Obviously, and especially in light of the leaked navy report for the House of Representatives, Menzel’s claims would seem unlikely at best.
Long History Of UFO Sightings In Brazil Since At Least The Late-1940s
The fact is, Brazil has long been a country that has seen more than its fair share of UFOs. For example, in Sao Paulo on the 23rd July 1947 – only weeks after the alleged Roswell Crash in New Mexico in the United States, according to a report by Joao Martins,  an encounter with 7-feet-tall humanoid aliens unfolded.
The report states that a topographer, Jose Higgins, reported seeing a white-grey disc-shaped craft that was resting on the ground on what appeared to be four metal legs. He estimated the object to be around 150 feet across.
As he stood taking in as many details as he could, a section of the vehicle opened and three human figures emerged from it, each around 7 feet tall. They had large, bald heads with round eyes, and they had particularly long legs in comparison to the overall frame. They were all dressed in strange clothing that appeared to resemble plastic bags to Higgins, and on their backs were something akin to metal boxes. It also appeared to Higgins that at least two other humanoid entities remained inside the craft and that they all looked absolutely identical.
Even though they had come fully out of the object, they remained in the shade, as if consciously staying out of the direct sunlight. Higgins could hear them speaking, although it was a language unknown to him, and was more sounds – to him – than anything else.
One of them suddenly pointed a metal tube at Higgins and motioned for him to come closer. They gestured for him to look inside the opening of the craft, which ultimately did, although he didn’t step inside.
He attempted to ask – through gesturing – where they had come from. They appeared to understand as they drew a large circle on the ground surrounded by seven smaller circles. They then pointed to one of these circles – presumably their home plant. It isn’t clear what solar system, planet, or even galaxy these seemingly extraterrestrial visitors might have been referring.
Once more, the aliens gestured for him to go inside, but he politely declined and began to make his way from the scene. After several moments, the entities got back inside the craft which ascended into the sky and disappeared.
Incidentally, five years later, sometime in January or February 1952, another humanoid encounter is on record. It was around 3 am on the night in question in Itanhaem (also in Sao Paulo) when an airline pilot, known in the report only as Mr. Chaskov, was awakened by a huge noise like that of an explosion. He peered out of the window, noticing a brilliant, bright, blue light coming somewhere from outside. Amazingly, despite the high strangeness of the situation, he returned back to sleep.
The following day, however, while speaking with his grandmother, he discovered she too had heard the explosion-like sound as well as the mystifying bright light. She, however, had gone outside to investigate what it might be. To her shock, she was confronted by multiple strange crafts that were shaped like “inverted soup plates” and glowed orange as they hovered above the waters of the Atlantic Ocean.
As she watched them for several minutes, she noticed that two, 7-feet tall humanoid figures appeared somehow on top of one of the objects. They each walked around and looked down, as if doing some kind of inspection or repair. This went on for some time before they reentered the hovering vehicles. Only seconds later, all of the objects disappeared into the distance with lightning speed.
Similar Object Captured On Film
Several years previously at around 4:30 pm on 7th May 1952, photographs of a similar object were captured in Barra da Tijuca. The picture was considered “one of the best on record” at the time it was taken and remains of interest to UFO researchers and investigators today.
According to the report, journalist, Joao Martins, and photographer, Ed Keffel, traveled to Barra da Tijuca for routine work for O Cruzeiro magazine, for whom they each worked. It was while they were there that Martins spotted an unusual object in the sky heading toward them. And what’s more, it was coming at them fast.
Although at first, he believed it was a plane, Keffel had the sense that there was something strange about the approaching aerial vehicle. In fact, the more he looked at it, the more it appeared that whatever the object was, it was traveling sideways.
Martins urged Keffel to get pictures of the object, which he duly did, obtaining five in total (one of which you can view below).
For his part, Martins would offer that as well as being a journalist, he was an engineer. Furthermore, he had wide experience in “meteorological, astronomical, and optical phenomena”, as well as considerable knowledge of “all known types of aircrafts”. Ultimately, the object they witnessed that afternoon “cannot be framed in any natural phenomena or aircraft” that he was aware of.
Martins would also assert that neither he nor Keffel had attempted to “derive any financial profit” from the incident. Nor did they receive any type of bonus from their employer, who took control of the story and the photographs.
He would further point to the position of the sun and the shadows as offering proof of the picture’s authenticity, going on to say that a person could to the spot where the pictures were taken and see the shadows for themselves. He would even point out that such tests had been performed by the Brazilian Air Force in response to the sightings and agreed with this.
Over the years the pictures have been the subject of intense debate as to their authenticity.
The pictures, though, remain relevant today.
Several Further Sightings In Late-1952
In November 1952, several more sightings occurred in Brazil.
According to an article titled My Contact With Flying Saucers, Dino Krespedon claimed to have witnessed several UFOs over three nights in the mountains of Angatuba. What’s more, on the third night one of these strange objects landed near where he was camped. He further put forward that he was invited onboard the craft, an invite he duly accepted. Perhaps one thing of interest to note here, are the claims that Dino was told the aliens came from “the satellites of Jupiter”. In recent years, scientists have indeed pondered whether at least two of the gas giant’s moons could harbor life.
Around the same time in Cubatao, according to the research files of UFO investigator, Analigia Santos Francisco, a truly tragic event would unfold. A 9-year-old girl was playing outside with friends and her brother. As they played, though, an extremely strong wind suddenly appeared out of nowhere causing them all to stop what they were doing. Then, a moment later, a bizarre object appeared and landed nearby. The witnesses would later state this strange vehicle was approximately the size of a bus.
After a moment or two, a door opened in the side of the mysterious craft. A second later, a metallic arrow shot out of the doorway. Before the children could stand any more, they all turned and ran from the scene. By the time the group had come to their senses and composed themselves, the young girl realized that her brother was missing.
After telling her parents what had happened, they and many neighbors and friends set out looking for the young boy. Several hours later, a report was received by the police department of a nearby city. They had found the missing boy wandering the streets in a severe state of shock. By the time the family arrived, the boy was suffering from severe skin burns and an extremely high fever. A short time after he was found he would tragically pass away. It appeared that he was suffering from exposure to radiation.
Sample Collecting Mission Along The Pardo River
In the book Flying Saucers: The Startling Evidence, Carol Lorenzen relays an intriguing encounter that occurred on the night of 4th November 1954. On the night in question, Jose Alves was fishing in the Pardo River when he suddenly noticed an unusual object overhead. Intrigue soon turned to alarm when he realized the object was heading straight toward him.
He watched without taking his eyes from the anomalous object as it landed nearby, so close, in fact, that he could almost reach out and touch it. It was oval-shaped, like “two washbowls placed together”. Now much too scared to even move, Alves remained where he was and kept his focus on this otherworldly vehicle.
Then, a section of the craft opened, revealing a window of sorts, from which three humanoid figures left the vehicle. Each was wearing the same white clothing complete with a hat that resembles a skull cap. They hadn’t seemed to notice him and were seemingly concerned with collecting samples of vegetation and possibly insects from the ground on which they stood. They also walked to the riverbank and collected samples of water in shiny metal tubes.
After several minutes of this, the creatures suddenly returned to the vehicle, almost as if they were in an extreme hurry. The vehicle then rose into the air and disappeared into the distance in a matter of seconds, remaining completely silent as it did so.
News of Alves’ encounter would soon spread around the community, and was consequently picked up by the local media. When reporters spoke to his friends and family about just what he might have seen, all would state that he was a quiet man who was not prone to making up wild stories and that he was a credible witness. In short, what he said happened, very likely did.
The sighting, however, remains a mystery.
Another Remarkable Incident
Only weeks after the encounters at Trindade Island had reached their peak, on the night of 24th February, another bizarre encounter unfolded in Brazil, this time in the state of Bahia.  According to the report, the incident occurred at a little after 3 am when Dr. Carlos Jose da Costa Pereira, his friend, Antonio de Araujo, was being driven by Pereira’s driver, Manoel Mendes when their car suddenly began to stutter somewhat. After several moments of this, it cut out altogether and came to a sudden stop.
The three men stepped from the vehicle and attempted to discover what the problem might be. All, however, looked as it should. As they were miles away from the nearest village, they decided to spend the night exactly where they were and then set out for assistance the next morning. As they were getting ready to do so, however, they noticed a “large, luminous object” that appeared to be hovering overhead a short distance away. Pereira would later state how the object “glowed with a strange light, which seemed fluid-between silver and blue”.
They soon realized that the object was not merely hovering, but was heading in their direction, getting larger with each passing second. The closer it got, the more they could make out the shape, which was like two bowls place facing each other, with a gold disc or ring running through the middle as if connecting to upper and lower sections. This ring was spinning extremely quickly.
The object came to a stop, approximately 250 feet from where the men were standing at an altitude of just under 100 feet. It remained still and silent for several seconds before it went into motion once more. It descended directly downward, coming to a stop once more when it was only 10 feet from the ground.
As it came descended, the witnesses could see that the bottom section was slightly flattened and that the glow from the object was “spreading toward the ground like a curtain of light-suspended between the UFO and the ground below”.
At this point, Mendes returned to the vehicle, clearly unsettled by the events. Pereria and his friend, on the other hand, remained where they were, neither taking their eyes from the mysterious object. They remained looking at the craft for several minutes as it remained where it was, with no sign of further activity. Deciding to take matters into their own hands somewhat, the two men took the decision to walk toward the hovering cosmic vehicle.
However, when they came to within a few feet of it, it shot into the air with breakneck speed, coming to a sudden stop around 600 feet from the ground. Over the next several minutes, it moved up to and across the sky, performing various maneuvers as it did so.
Eventually, by 4:30 am, the object disappeared from sight and appeared to have gone. However, at 6:30 am – two hours later, and almost four hours after they had first seen the object – they saw it once more, hovering at a relatively low altitude, slightly tilted on its side. It remained motionless for several minutes before it suddenly shot into the distance, disappearing almost instantly.
Incidentally, before they set out to search for help with the arrival of daylight, they tried the vehicle one last time. To their amazement, the engine roared into life with no problems whatsoever.
Bizarre Display Off The Northeastern Coast Of Brazil
Several months after the Trindade Island photograph was captured, multiple witnesses off the coast of northeast Brazil witnessed a similar, round, disc-shaped object. According to an article in Flying Saucer Review by Gordon Creighton,  at around 6 am one morning in early April 1958, a jeweler, Wilson Lustosa, was making was way by boat from Maceio to Parapueria when he saw a boat of fishermen seemingly preoccupied with something overhead.
He called out to them to ask what their concern was. He looked to where they were looking, eventually hearing a rather unsettling humming sound that appeared to be getting louder by the second. Eventually, a machine-like object appeared out of the sky above, stopping and hovering at approximately 50 feet above the water. It was a little over 100 feet away from his and the fishermen’s boat, and appeared to rock slightly as it hovered.
Lustosa would later recall that the object appeared to be made of three separate sections – an upper, middle, and lower. He would describe the upper section as looking like “an inverted bowl” which was the color of aluminum. On the top of this section was a dome-shaped section that glowed brightly.
The middle section contained several square portholes which had a red glow to them, while the lower section appeared like a bowl, with the same dimensions as the upper part only turned the correct way up, and was of a dark color. When the witnesses looked at the portholes around the middle, although they weren’t certain, they believed they could see shadow figures of humanoid entities looking out of them the openings.
Perhaps most bizarre of all, though, was the activity with the water directly under the object, which appeared as though it was being drawn up to the object through some kind of invisible straw, while the water around it bubbled and boiled. As this was taking place, a resonating humming sound was audible.
In total, the object remained in view for around 60 minutes, on occasion rising into the air before descending once more with great speed, stopping suddenly before it hit the water. Then, it would simply disappear into the distance leaving the witnesses to contemplate just what they had seen.
It is also worth our time noting another sighting, around the same time on the 25th April. At around 7 pm on the night in question, the USS Rose was sailing across the Atlantic Ocean to the United States from Germany.  According to a report made just over four decades later, the witness was heading toward the deck to smoke a cigarette when he heard two other crew members talking about a strange object in the skies.
Intrigued, the witness headed over to the pair, but remained quiet, listening to what they were saying without drawing their attention. He could see they were looking up at what seemed to be a star. However, when the witness looked at it also, it appeared to move.
He remained quiet, hearing one of the GIs state that he had attempted to report what he had seen (presumably the same object they were viewing now) but he had been told to remain quiet about it by his superiors. The witness watched the object for several moments, claiming in his report that he was “convinced (the object) was tracking the ship”. He would describe how “it would stop, and after a while it would move again”, and how “it moved so fast and stopped so fast”.
He would eventually make his presence known to the two GIs. They weren’t however, willing to discuss it further, and each walked away without saying anything more.
An Almost Identical Saturn-Like Object Two Decades Later
Another sighting that is also very much worth examining here is one that took place over 20 years after the encounter off Trindade Island. It is important to note, that one of the descriptions often used by those who witnessed the object close up was how it appeared Saturn-like, as if the ring around its middle bulged out somewhat.
On the morning of 12th May 1976, at around 10 am, while driving to Passo Fondo, Joshua da Silva and Gesareo Goncalves witnessed a bizarre, metallic sphere-like object hovering near the Jacui River.  What’s more, the object had a ring around its middle that made it appear like the planet Saturn.
Goncalves slowly drove forward toward the strange object, stopping when he was around 100 feet away. From this distance, the object’s exterior had the appearance of “brushed metal” and appeared to be around 25 feet wide.
Almost as soon as he had brought the vehicle to a stop, the strange object began to move toward the ground. By this time, however, da Silva had managed to obtain his camera and quickly snapped two photographs of the craft. As he did so, the object began in the opposite direction, climbing higher into the sky as it did so. It was out of sight within no more than 10 seconds.
When the photographs were examined a short time later, experts could find no evidence of tampering, and nothing to indicate the report (and picture) was nothing but a hoax.
You can see that picture below.
Brazil Remains One Of The Most Active Place For UFOs Today
While Brazil was undoubtedly busy with UFO reports throughout the start of the Modern UFO era and throughout the 1950s, the fact is this abundance of activity has continued throughout the decades, with regular UFO encounters reported from the South American country today. And while these sightings are outside of our examination here, the fact they are still happening shows that the sightings and photographs captured during these early years of UFO sightings should perhaps be viewed with a slightly more serious mindset.
What is so important, in terms of UFO sightings and alien encounters, about this part of the world? Is it the dense forest and jungle areas that offer the chance to conduct whatever affairs brought these extraterrestrial visitors to Earth in the first place away from prying (human) eyes? Or might the fact that the Atlantic Ocean hugs a huge part of the country offer credence to the claims that these alien entities have established some kind of permanent presence deep below the waters of our oceans?
And why did these apparent observations and fact-sampling missions seemingly morph into ones of abduction and experimentation? Might we conclude that this alien race that was seemingly involved in many of the encounters we have examined here is different from those usually connected to abduction cases – the Greys? Or might those early reconnaissance missions have naturally transcended into abduction and profiling? Indeed, if it is the latter, then we might ask how far along the line are we in this unknown agenda?
One thing is certain – Brazil, along with the entire South American continent will undoubtedly be as crucial as anywhere else in unlocking the secrets of the UFO and Alien Question.
The short video below looks at the Trindade Island incident in a little more detail.
|↑1||Trindade Island Photos, NICAP http://www.nicap.org/580116trindade_dir.htm|
|↑2||APRO Bulletin, May 1961|
|↑3||Sighting Report, Dr. Olavo Fontes, APRO Bulletin, May 1959 http://www.nicap.org/580224santa-antonio_dir.htm|
|↑4||A Brazilian Sighting, Gordon Creighton, Flying Saucer Review, Nov-Dec 1964 Vol. 10, No. 6|
|↑5||An Object That Looked Like A Star, National UFO Reporting Center https://www.nuforc.org/webreports/reports/005/S05577.html|
|↑6||Two Photos From Brazil, APRO Bulletin, Nov. 1978|
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