Not a Missile on Google Maps

My first reaction on seeing this Google Maps zoomed-in sat photo was “OMG MISSILE OVER UTAH MUST SEND LINK TO EVERYONE” but OKCalvin has set me aright by pointing out that cruise missiles don’t have dual contrails, and that closer examination of the object shows that its wings are dark against the background:

Sure enough, someone on this forum entry is pretty sure it’s a Mesa Air CRJ-900, with dark green wings and tail. I am, as usual, late to the party. (AIM transcript in the comments.)


  1. The rest of the story:

    (11:57:01) brownpaudotcom: Hmm, this might interest you –'36.38%22N,+112%C2%B017'56.59%22W&layer=&ie=UTF8&z=18&ll=38.22631,-112.298598&spn=0.002019,0.005332&t=k&om=1&iwloc=addr

    (11:57:15) brownpaudotcom: It’s in UT.

    (11:58:34) okcalvin: What’s with the field?

    (11:59:27) brownpaudotcom: No idea, maybe it’s icy.

    (12:00:36) okcalvin: Sicily?

    (12:01:17) okcalvin: Is that where they found Jimmy Hoffa?

    (12:02:08) okcalvin: It is cultivated farmland in NW Sicily

    (12:02:49) brownpaudotcom: Sicily, UT, I suppose?

    (12:03:08) okcalvin: UT?

    (12:03:17) okcalvin: Utah?

    (12:03:30) okcalvin: No, this is THE Sicily

    (12:03:39) okcalvin: that’s what pulled up on my browser

    (12:03:47) brownpaudotcom: Hmmm, odd

    (12:03:58) brownpaudotcom: You don’t see the missile?

    (12:03:58) okcalvin: are you talking about the MD-80 that some thought was a cruise missle?

    (12:04:06) brownpaudotcom: Oh, is it an MD-80?

    (12:05:28) okcalvin: cruise missles: single engined. this bogey has twin exhaust contrails. Also, carefully check where the wings would be on the fuselage — it appears that the wings are painted dark

    (12:06:14) brownpaudotcom: oho, ok

    (12:06:40) brownpaudotcom: yeah i see the wings now

    (12:06:44) brownpaudotcom: you have set me aright

    (12:06:59) okcalvin: also, a cruise missile is quite smaller than an MD-80. The scale on the sat photo wouldn’t be as fine detailed for a cruise missle

    (12:07:39) okcalvin: also, the cruise missiles are painted to be not as distinguishable from above as that bogey

    (12:08:32) okcalvin: funny that I clicked the link and got taken to La Cosa Nostra country

    (12:09:18) okcalvin: must have gotten the lat and didn’t get the proper long

    (12:09:24) brownpaudotcom: weird

    (12:10:23) okcalvin: Here’s what came up:

    (12:14:40) okcalvin:

    (12:14:53) okcalvin:

    (12:15:38) brownpaudotcom: Ah, the bad URL must have been Trillian cutting off the URL at a special character

    (12:15:52) okcalvin: I’m using GAIM

    (12:16:12) okcalvin: the whole link came through, but it only allowed linkage to the cut-off url

    (12:16:55) okcalvin:

    (12:18:22) okcalvin: that last one is a particularly bad boy

    (12:18:37) okcalvin: you can see it is stealth through and through

    (12:19:29) okcalvin: perverse that we can think up all these cool ways to do each other in