Les déclarations des astronautes Vladimir Kovalyonok et Aleksander Ivanchenkov
- Cosmonautes, Soyouz 29 (Juin 1978) -
"L'objet se déplace à 20-30 degrés, il passe sous notre appareil. On dirait une balle, elle grossit de plus en plus. C'est orange foncé, elle évolue trop près de nous."
En 1993, dans son village de Kosnikov, près de Moscou, le Général-Major d'aviation Vladimir Kovalyonok a déclaré, dans une interview vidéo avec Giorgio Bongiovanni : "On May 5, 1981, we were in orbit in the Salyut-6 space station. I saw an object that didn't resemble any cosmic objects I'm familiar with. It was a round object which resembled a melon, round and a little bit elongated. In front of this object was something that resembled a gyrating depressed cone. I can draw it, it's difficult to describe. The object resembles a barbell. I saw it becoming transparent and like with a `body' inside. At the other end 1 saw something like gas discharging, like a reactive object. Then something happened that is very difficult for me to describe from the point of view of physics. Last year in the magazine Nature I read about a physicist... we tried together to explain this phenomenon and we decided it was a `plasma-form'. I have to recognize that it did not have an artificial origin. It was not artificial because an artificial object couldn't attain this form. I don't know of anything that can make this movement... tightening, then expanding, pulsating. Then as I was observing, something happened, two explosions. One explosion, and then 0.5 seconds later, the second part exploded. I called my colleague Viktor Savinykh, but he didn't arrive in time to see anything.
"What are the particulars ? First conclusion : the object moved in a sub orbital path, otherwise I wouldn't have been able to see it. There were two clouds, like smoke, that formed a barbell. It came near me and I watched it. Then we entered in to the shade for two or three minutes after this happened. When we came out of the shade we didn't see anything. But during a certain time, we and the craft were moving together."