The ‘Betz Sphere’ Enigma Metal Spherical Artifact Discovered by Members of the Betz Family
The Betz sphere is a spherical metal artifact that was discovered by members of the Betz family in 1974. The object, whose shape is that of a perfect sphere, quickly became the subject of the most varied theories and controversies.
The history of this mysterious metallic sphere has generated great fascination among ufologists, scientists and also military interest.
In May 1974, Terry Mathew Betz, a 21-year-old medical student, his mother Gerri and his father Antonie, a naval engineer, went to inspect property damage caused by a fire that had spread across 220 hectares of swamp. Fort George Island forest, located east of Jacksonville, Florida.
* On the 26th of the same month, the family found something quite peculiar in the region that had been a victim of fire.
* They found a polished metallic sphere approximately 8 inches in diameter (about 20.32 centimeters).
Although it was in an area that had been consumed by fire, the sphere showed no signs of damage, scratches, or the typical dark spots that appear on metals when they are subjected to fire.
Terry and his parents began to suspect that this sphere could be an object owned by NASA, or even part of some Soviet satellite (remember that in 1974 the cold war began, and the American people lived in constant paranoia about a possible Soviet attack). The Betz family even considered the possibility that this object was the cause of the fire, but as mentioned above, the object showed no signs of having been in contact with high temperatures, as the metal looked strangely shiny.
Terry and his parents decided to take the sphere home. The object found its destination in the young student’s room, and he stayed there for about two weeks, until something mysterious happened.
Terry was accompanied by her friend Theresa Fraser improvising with the guitar, a fact that ended up causing some reactions in the strange metallic sphere. The object began to “vibrate” and emit a penetrating sound, in response to the sound emitted by the guitar, whenever certain chords were played.
Days later, members of the Betz family began to notice other strange events related to the sphere. They found that by rolling the sphere on the ground, it could change its trajectory at will and then return to its starting point.
* Betz stated that on one occasion the object was in motion for about 12 minutes, until it finally returned to the point of origin.
The sphere also seemed sensitive to weather conditions, as these quirks became more noticeable on sunny days, as if the instrument received its energy from that source. Although clearly influenced by sunlight, the sphere showed no change when exposed to sunlight or infrared rays.
* The metallic globe seemed to emit a low-frequency vibration at certain times, as if a motor was operating inside the object.
Another intriguing fact was that there was a small triangular dot on the dial. This point represented the magnetic region of the object.
Motivated by the strange discoveries made about the metal artifact, Terry began several home experiments. When the object came into contact with another metallic object, a hammer, for example, the sphere seemed to vibrate like a bell.
The strange ability of the sphere to move as if it had a will of its own ended up worrying the Betzes, so much so that they kept the sphere in a closed bag at night, believing that the spherical object could simply “escape”.
Finally, the Bets decided to make their discovery public, so maybe they could find out what the hell that artifact was.
The local Jacksonville newspaper was so intrigued by the story that they were forced to send an experienced photographer, Lon Enger, to the scene to take some pictures.
When Enger arrived at the Betz house, he was greeted eagerly by Gerri, who wasted no time presenting the sphere to him. Enger described the episode on June 12, 1974, in the daily edition of St. Petersburg Times: “I was suspicious of this sort of thing. When I got there, Mrs. Betz said, ‘You won’t believe it if you don’t see it.’
It was then that the matriarch of the family told the still doubtful photographer to give the sphere a little push on the floor. That’s what Enger did, and for him nothing extraordinary happened because the sphere simply stopped when the force of the impulse it had given at the beginning ended. After a pause, however, the sphere reversed and headed to the left for about twenty feet, made a wide arc, and then returned to the photographer’s feet.
Enger examined the metal sphere carefully and, as the Betz family had done before him, he could find no mark or sign of a maker on the surface, only a triangular symbol stamped into the surface. That’s how the photographer reproduced the story for his editor to publish the story, and in the course of five days the Betz case exploded in the media in several parts of the world.
Reporters from prestigious publications like the New York Times traveled from far and wide to see this mysterious sphere with their own eyes, but it didn’t just pique the curiosity of the press. The scientific and military communities also requested the analysis of the strange object.
* Representatives from the US Army and NASA contacted the Betz family, as well as UFO researchers.
Visitors were skeptical, but were almost invariably baffled by the sphere’s unexpected abilities.
* A US Navy spokesperson even admitted on television that he could not explain its origin.
In an official press release provided by the Navy, it was publicly stated that the sphere was not owned by the US government. The family, who had intentionally chosen an isolated place to live, became the target of the press that would not leave them alone.
Renowned astronomer Dr. J. Allen Hynek asked the Betz family to send the sphere to his office at Northwestern University in Chicago so he could personally inspect it, but Gerri refused, believing such an object could be confiscated. or lost.
To the chagrin of dozens of scientists and onlookers, the sphere remained in the Betz family home. The object remained on the Betz property until some new events began to happen, and to scare the owners of the sphere.
* Gerri Betz reported that she and her family started listening to organ music in the middle of last night, even though there was never such an instrument in the house.
As if that wasn’t terrifying enough, the doors began to open and close, seemingly of their own accord, at all hours of the day and night. By then Antonie and Gerri decided it was time to unravel this mystery.
After a series of terrifying nighttime disturbances, the Betz family finally left the sphere to the scientists at Naval Air Station Jacksonville. The initial efforts of Navy metallurgists turned out to be dead ends, as their machines were not powerful enough to penetrate the object.
Chris Berninger, the Navy Spokesperson, reported the following: “Our first x-ray attempts get us nowhere. We will use a more powerful machine on the sphere and we will also run spectrography to determine what metal it is made of.”
Eventually, the station’s scientists were able to determine the sphere’s exact size and weight, 9 kg. They also concluded that the coating was about a centimeter thick, which the report said meant it could withstand a pressure of 120,000 pounds per square inch. They also discovered that the sphere was made of a ferrous stainless metal, specifically magnetic.
Powerful x-ray equipment revealed two round objects within the sphere surrounded by a “halo” made of a material of unusual density. They also observed that the sphere had four different magnetic poles, two positive and two negative, which were concentric.
The Navy concluded that while the sphere was intensely magnetic, it showed no signs of radioactivity and did not appear to be explosive. Marine scientists wanted to dismantle the object for a deeper look, but Gerri Betz refused, fearing that the sphere could be destroyed and, as it did not belong to the government, asked for it to be returned.
The Navy kept its promise and returned it, but many questions remained unanswered. At this point, the Betz family began to seriously consider the possibility that they were in possession of authentic “alien technology”, or an “alien listening device”, as some of their neighbors called it.
On July 13, 1974, Dr. Carl Willson (a representative of a research company in Louisiana known as the Omega Minus One Institute in Baton Rouge) examined the sphere for more than six hours and found that the magnetic field around it was emitting radio waves.
Willson said the sphere’s metal shell, when compared to stainless steel, contained an unknown element that made it a little different. And apparently, he also witnessed the sphere’s properties of propelling itself across surfaces and suddenly changing direction. One of the theories postulated was that it could be a damaged alien probe or even some sort of anti-gravity device.
In the end, the Omega Minus One Institute’s results on the mystery sphere’s identity were as conclusive as the Navy’s, and the Betz family was once again left without unraveling the mystery. That same year, 1974, they sent the sphere to a major UFO research event, which would feature the presence of well-known characters in the area. Terry was appointed as the object’s personal messenger and was sent to New Orleans with the sphere.
Then the sphere was back in the spotlight, and they put it through another series of tests. They concluded everything that had been said earlier, including the fact that the device works as an audio transmitter.
Although they didn’t know the object’s origin or what it was, they couldn’t say it was extraterrestrial. The Doctor. James Albert Harder, a professor of civil and hydraulic engineering at the University of California, Berkeley, was increasingly intrigued by reports about the Betz sphere and was fascinated by the opportunity to examine the object with his own hands. . The Betz allowed him to analyze the artifact and the results were intriguing.
In an announcement made at the International Congress of Ufology in Chicago on August 24, 1974, Dr. James Albert presented surprising conclusions about the Betz sphere. He reported that, based on x-ray studies, the two inner spheres were made of an element much heavier than anything known to science. “If someone tried to split the sphere, it could explode like an atomic bomb,” the man said.
The Betz family expressed concern but continued to possess the object. From that moment on, stories about the sphere seem to have disappeared without a trace. Just as the case took a fascinating, if not terribly dangerous, turn.
As time passes, two basic questions remain unanswered: What the hell was that? Was he one of the famous “foo fighters” of WWII? Another mystery is what happened to the sphere, as after Dr. Harding, the subject simply disappeared from the media.