Philadelphia Experiment (Project Rainbow)
or around October 28, 1943, the American Cannon-class destroyer escort,
disappeared from its berth at the Philadelphia Naval Yards, was sighted
briefly off Norfolk, VA (215 miles away)
then reappeared in Philadelphia minutes later. Witnesses say it
happened, others, including the U.S. Navy say nonsense.
of what happened are touted by conspiracy theorists:
experiment (officially known as Project
Rainbow) was conducted by Dr.
Franklin Reno (or Rinehart) in an attempt
to bend light around the “Eldridge” and render it invisible.
preparing specialized equipment designed to detect
magnetic and gravitational anomalies under the sea floor.
test took place on July 22 in which the warship was rendered almost
invisible (some observers reported the ship encased in a green fog). A
second test on October 28, ostensibly to make the ship invisible to
radar, caused the Eldridge to totally disappear followed by the short
lived appearance off Virginia and the subsequent reappearance in
The effects of
the experiment on the crew were
apparently catastrophic, some sailors merging with the vessel’s decks
and bulkheads, others disappearing alltogether. Horrified the navy
canceled further tests.
Whether or not
took place is mired in controversy, witnesses and their claims found to
be inconsistent and unreliable, logs from the Eldridge and veterans
eyewitness testimony seeming proof that not only wasn’t it involved in
experiments (the ship was apparently undergoing sea trials in the
Bahamas during the dates indicated), it apparently hadn't been
anywhere near Philadelphia.
explanations as to the stories origins, include:
ship was seen undergoing a common degaussing
in which electric current flowing through cables wrapped around a
ship’s hull creates an electromagnetic field which neutralizes
ship’s own magnetic field thereby rendering it less attractive (or
invisible) to magnetic mines.
It was part of a
campaign by the Navy or some other governmental agency aimed at
both alarming and undermining the confidence of countries such as
and Japan with which the U.S.
was at war.
It was a
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