Area 51 Altered in Google Earth?

I was having a bit of fun yesterday with Google Earth. I was joined by Tim King of style:guide podcast. Apart from Tim finding my house only using text messages (quite an acheivement I thought) we found something quite strange in Area 51.

I was looking at Area 51 because I heard that there were aliens there (inserted by the Google crew), but apparently that was only an April Fools gag. But what I did find was not.

I found an area that upon first glance looked like just another strip of dirt. But on closer inspection the dirt colour looks like it has been “pasted” onto a structure. The image looks to have been altered in some way. There are a few points that you might want to consider when you look at it:

  • It could be something white, like roofing iron; laying on the ground but it seems an odd shape for that
  • Note the edges of the dirt colouring, it looks to be pixelized and uneven, especially where the white is
  • Have a look at the shadow at the top right, something with height is casting that shadow
  • If the dirt colour is just the colour of a structure then why is there no shadow at the top of the image? Compare this with other structures that are in close proximity and the shadow direction and length
  • The colour that looks to have been pasted over the top doesn’t match at the top and left side

So it might be nothing and just a quirk of the image. However, Tim is a web designer and works extensively with image software. He maintains that the image has been altered in some way. He does admit though that he is not an expert in satelite imagery. Then there is the “… it just doesn’t look right” feeling you get when you look at it, and it does’nt.

If there is someone with some expertise that can tell us what is going on with this image then that would be great! Because it has us stumpped. We tried to think of just what would do it without manipulating it. We could not think of anything.

Here is a link to the specific building/structure in Google Earth, this link is a .kmz link and requires Google Earth to work. Note that the placemark in Google Earth is not on the area of interest the “>>>>” point to it. If you do not have Google Earth then you can link to the image on Google Maps.

The exact co-ordinates of the building are:

Lattitude: 37°13’24.41″N

Longitude: 115°49’7.51″W

Google Earth Image

This image has not been resized or altered by the author of this post

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22 Responses to “Area 51 Altered in Google Earth?”

  1. Matt Foxtrot Says:

    Wouldn’t surprise me if the government made some deal with the satilite company, but it’s most likely a sat glitch.

  2. Mark Says:

    If you look closely ..you can see the optimization distortions. I’d like to believe the image isnt altered because of the distortion (its shared through out everywhere in the area)….

    But…

    Key but here….

    The U.S. military does track every satelite up in the sky…they know when non secure satleites are flying overhead anywhere..

    It could possibly be some kind of camofluge of some sort. who knows..a big white tarp or something.

    • CatalyticConverter Says:

      I don’t think it’s unreasonable to assume that they asked Google to change something about it; and I don’t think that would be an unreasonable request.
      It always gets me that people assume there’s some sort of conspiracy here. The government does want to cover up what’s going on here, and it’s most likely because it involves cutting edge aviation research that they don’t want anyone to know about for good reasons.

      “the gov is trying to hide some thing”
      Yes, they probably are, and I hope the stuff they develop there remains hidden until the tech becomes obsolete.

  3. sam Says:

    what are the chances the there would be a static glitch right near a runway ( in the middle of nowhere) the gov is trying to hide some thing

  4. foxbat555 Says:

    Its sun flare of metllalic roofs/objects

  5. St. Elsewhere Says:

    u notice that the 2 circular buildings north of it have similar distortions. so if it was a glitch it would have happened to every white building in the area. but the 3 that are down there are distorted in some way but i want to know is why does it look like a plane wing?

  6. Ronnie Says:

    There are alot of things either buildings or something else that are like that they have all been rubbed out if you look around you will see loads but what did you think would be seen lots of ufos or new jets I dont think so just be happy with what you can see thats more then you would of found out and seen before there was such a thing as the internet

  7. BigBug Says:

    The aberation is reflectance causing overload in the imaging sensor. It happens when the camera is aligned just right with a reflective mettalic object. It is characteristic because it overloads the sensors in a line, so the aberation appears axial (in this case down), and the length of the aberation isn’t consistent across each sensor, so you get the characteristically jagged bottom. They have fuzzy edges because you are not viewing the images at the same resolution as the sensor.

    There are tons of these around the groom lake images. The plane on the taxi way displays the same, as do many of the lorries. If you find the large square building on the west side of the main complex, it is surrounded by cars and lorries with the same feature, including one very large overload from an articulated lorry.

  8. justin Says:

    no its just reflection of the cars if you look at the biggest one you can tell its light reflecting off a truck and yes there are trucks cause if u go above the one i said u can see a truck and notice how its in a parking lot

  9. michael Says:

    if that is a section of a wing, then it is a very big wing. If it is a white tarp, its a very big white tarp. Makes sense that its’ a white tarp, they just cover up what they don’t want the satellites to see, does not surprise me.

  10. michael Says:

    did you guys know that the main purpose of area 51 is to test advanced aircraft? that would obviously account for covering up goings on. Did you know that the military police around area 51 have the right to “use deadly force” if needed to shoot and kill a person that does not stop at their request to stop? It is a highly protected area where the usa tests the newest of state of the art aircraft. According to what I have read online, the usa also has several examples of soviet advanced aircraft it has obtained. These are at the site and used for research.

  11. Ian Says:

    Almost every military and civilian airport on Google earth shows these aberrations. It is quite clear that the images have been altered by the authorities to remove strategic details. Not suprising really…..

  12. Josh Says:

    I’m surprised that you can even see pictures of Area 51 on Google. With all of the ground security, you would think they would care just as much with satellite pictures.

  13. Dragon Says:

    I just checked those Coordinates (Lattitude: 37°13′24.41″N
    Longitude: 115°49′7.51″W) on Google earth, and either the Photoshopping has gotten real good, or the area in question has been destroyed by what appears to be a mining operation of some sort.

  14. Dlm Says:

    Actually reviewing the same coordinates that area is completely different than the one depicted in your photo. Both fake?

  15. erd Says:

    Like people have said, that is relfection of the sun, you’ll see it all over google earth. There is a lot stuff in Navada where you think ‘what is that’! A lot of areas where buildings have been demolished and there are old runways and stuff. If you see some of the airbases in that area they are suspiciously empty which just means they knew when the satellite was going to be taking images, so they removed anyhitng interesting.
    I did wonder if those big white things were something being emitted from buildings on military bases but as I say it happens all over google earth and it’s clearly just reflective surfaces. But don’t worry, the world is still full of aliens :)

  16. fta Says:

    so why did they cover up the image on antartica. check out 70…….. 88………… there is a very blatant photoshop edit.

  17. George Says:

    The co-ordinates that you are giving are not the exact. Unless you are pointing to a different place than I do. Check that :
    37°13′29.83′′N
    115°48′51.78′′W

  18. Jason Peters Says:

    Hey buddy wrong coordinates the real area 51 coordinates are 37.240203°N 115.818558°W however i can tell you for sure that the images at these coordinates are non updated satellite images of another facility in another country. take this statement as is i can not reveal my sources

  19. Diana Says:

    I have noticed that all over the “world”. There are areas that you would think need not be covered. I can understand military installations of all countries but other tourist like places are no where to be found just a blur where they should be. I suppose it could have to do with a countries laws but really??!

  20. Rich Says:

    If you look at the cross shape on the dry lake bed, on the south west end, look at the tarmaced runway just north west of it, there is a ring/circle thing on the runway (using google maps with the scale bar at 2000ft). Now zoom in to have a closer look and the ring disappears. The images are censored!! A vanishing UFO??

  21. chad Says:

    ya it looks like a camo. tarp for that building, they use those tarps in places like forward bases near enemy postions to hide the base from air and ground forces. Like people said though, it is a place where we test super advanced and new tech so I would assume they would cover up some of there work since just about anyone can use google earth.


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