FROM THE BOOK, "THE CHALLENGE OF CONTACT" BY PHILIP KRAPF
A week or so ago a man called in to Coast to Coast AM and referred to the craft that Philip Krapf had spoken about. He said that the Verdant's ship was 600 stories high. Well that sounded awfully big so I got out my book by Philip titled "The Challenge of Contact" to see if I could find the description. I will relate what he said.
(This is when he was on board the ship and guided by "Gina", one of the Verdants)
We found ourselves back in the observation bubble,, my favorite place on the ship. Coincidentally, the moon had entered the first quarter a couple of days earlier, which meant that the back half and the front half -- the one facing Earth -- were both partially in light and shadow. Within a few days, Earth would be seeing a full moon while the back half where the Verdant ship was positioned would be in total darkness. Even so, due to our position and our close proximity to the moon's surface, the ship was already in total darkness, as it had been during my first time aboard.
As such, hundreds of spotlights played across the massive craft, and light from thousands of portholes shone in the darkness of space. There was a beehive of activity as scores of smaller shuttle craft entered and exited airlocks on the Goodwill. As I reported after my first tip aboard, the ship has a radius of about three-quarters of a mile, or a diameter of about a mile and a half. It has 16 decks or stories along the outer rim, which is about 200 feet thick at that point, and gradually rises to its highest point of 234 decks, or about 3,000 feet thick. In the center. After we seated ourselves in the chairs that looked out through the and its 360 degree panorama of the velvet blackness of space, Gina activated the filtering device that screened out all artificial light and allowed only the natural light of the universe to penetrate.
I thought that even if I had the 20,000-year life span of a typical Verdant, I would never get tired of drinking in the awesome and magnificent spectacle of millions of stars and galaxies shining like brilliant diamonds against the ebony backdrop of infinity. I was unexpectedly seized with the feeling that I was in a state of grace. I had a strong desire -- and felt that it was almost possible for me to do so -- to reach out into the endless void and grab a handful of stardust. It has been said that there are no atheists in foxholes, and at that moment I could actually identify with those who have related tales of profound religious experiences.
AND OVER FURTHER IN THE BOOK.....
She deactivated the filter and the giant ship flared into view again outside the bubble, lit up by the massive floodlights that played over it, the seemingly thousand glowing portholes. Without the corruption of artificial lights, the inside of the half-sphere where we had been sitting was quite dark, illuminated only by the billions of stars and galaxies to a level of perhaps one-quarter as bright as a moonlit night on Earth. But with the filter deactivated, the artificial lights emanating from the ship itself lightened the room considerably, allowing us to see each other clearly and navigate without missteps.
As we stepped down from the raised viewing platform that held the seats, Gina continued on down to the walkway that circled the room rather than heading for the door.
"You'll probably want to see this," she said.
She raised her arm at a 70-degree angle and pointed a delicately thin index finger.
"See that really bright object about 10 o'clock high"
I craned my neck to see where she was looking. The object was impossible to miss because of its brilliance. It was the brightest thing in the "sky" and stood out in dazzling domination among the millions of other points of light.
It was, in fact, an amazing spectacle.
"What is it?" I asked.
"It's a meteoroid, just an errant hunk of rock, or more likely iron," Gina said. "It's coming this way."
"But why is it glowing? There's no atmosphere, so it can't be burning up. It should really be invisible."
It's being burned up by an atomizer, an energy beam." She turned her finger toward the ship and said that the beam was emanating from a special port deep within the ship's superstructure. The closest that Gina could come to describing it was to compare it to what we humans know as high-powered lasers, a still-crude comparison. And unlike a laser, the beam itself was invisible.
"What's going to happen? How big is that thing, anyway? Is it going to come close to us, or hit the moon, or what?" It was a thrilling moment and a thousand questions raced through my mind.
"It's about a meter in diameter -- a yard in your measurement system -- but we can't let it hit the moon even at that size. It would cause an awfully big explosion."
The object seemed to be growing in size, and then it blinked out.
"They got it." Gina said.
"How far away was it?" I asked.
"Probably about 20 miles at its last moment. There was plenty of time to spare. It would have taken another 3 or 4 seconds to get here."
Another drifting booby trap eliminated. It's a routine procedure that goes on all the time, I was told.
"That could be used as a weapon of mass destruction! I blurted out. "You have weapons aboard this ship!"
"Listen to me carefully now. There are no weapons in space. They aren't allowed." She put great emphasis on the words.
"The atomizer is totally harmless to living organisms, both animal and vegetable," she said after a pause. "You could stand directly in front of it and it wouldn't so much as singe an eyelash. It is effective only against inanimate objects. It is a tool." She further explained that the energy ray penetrates to the very core of every atom in the targeted object. If a single living cell is detected, the beam passes harmlessly through.
"Lets say that the meteoroid contained a living bacterium inside its core," she said, "a simple one-celled animal. We would know immediately that there was life aboard when the rock or hunk of iron failed to atomize when the beam struck it."
I believed her. "What would you do then?"
"If there was time, send a shuttle craft out to snare it and bring it back to the laboratory for study," she replied. "Otherwise we would do nothing except take evasive action if we were about to be hit by it. If it was going to miss the moon, then the shuttle craft would chase it down and capture it."
Once analyzed, the rock would be crushed into harmless dust and sprinkled back into space. Larger objects, let's say the size of a modern aircraft carrier or larger, would be studied on site and then eventually catapulted toward the nearest star, where they would be consumed. And the solar system would be just a little bit safer from wandering marauders.
Maybe some of you remember the letters I received from "Tro", purportedly an ET. One of their duties he said was to capture meteors and disintegrate them! Hmmm maybe he was real!