Here's an interesting article: https://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zone/2 ... reflectors
To me, this makes a lot of sense. There is a lot floating around up there, as there has been since the explosion of advanced aerodynamics technologies in the late 1940s. I don't think it's any coincidence that UFO/UAP has become significant during the same time period that we humans radically opened the envelope in aerodynamics, combined with the application of the Cold War.
I’ve now seen all of the episodes of the History Channel series on UFO/UAPs and must admit, the totality of the case they presented is highly provocative. There were two main takeaways from the programs for me, the first being that the fact that the US Navy is now formalizing reporting guidelines for those encountering unknown objects is a really, REALLY big deal, does in fact represent a sea change in dealing with this topic, and represents a major achievement for those named in the program who fought to make it happen.
The second, and at least equally important in my mind is that the bottom line which I could distill from the aeronautical experts discussing the Navy sightings (at least in the case of the Nimitz group since there were also sightings by the Theodore Roosevelt carrier group both off the US east coast and also while it was in the Gulf of Arabia), is that the objects sighted had the capability of moving against the wind and without generating any heat signatures.
That fact is what seems to set these sightings apart from any others. Here is a link to unclassified documentation (including FLIR video) of those sightings (I have no connection to this organization): https://coi.tothestarsacademy.com/
The article you referenced does seem to check many boxes regarding radar balloons and/or drones accounting for sightings but there remains a problem with the Nimitz sightings, at least in my mind. Here is the description of one of those devices from that referenced article:
“In general, the balloon system may be encouraged to travel in the vertical direction by releasing gas from the bag to descend and by either injecting gas from the compressed gas cylinder and/or jettisoning weight to ascend. The balloon system may optionally include some form of directional thrusters to allow it to travel in a specific horizontal direction and/or travel in a vertical direction at a rate faster than the effects of lift and weight would allow. Thrusters may be provided by solid rocket propellant, or alternately by miniature engines that burn hydrogen gas from the bag or from the gas cylinder.”https://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zone/2 ... reflectors
As I see it, moving the device horizontally would involve use of thrusters burning solid rocket propellant or hydrogen gas (as described in the last sentence above) and those would generate heat signatures. The article on reflectors also referenced drones or unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) which can be launched by submarines as countermeasures.https://news.usni.org/2016/03/31/navy-s ... nched-uavs
As near as I could tell, those UAVs/drones are propelled by electric motors and propellers so they wouldn't have exhaust plumes or heat signatures. On the other hand, those devices have a short airborne life span of less than an hour. Both of those types of devices would seem to be eliminated from consideration in the Nimitz cases.
Here are some comments by Tyler Rogaway, who also authored the article on reflectors which you referenced. These comments are from an earlier article of his titled “What The Hell Is Going On With UFO’s And The Department of Defense?”
“When it comes to the so-called "Tic Tac" incident that involved the Nimitz Carrier Strike Group off the Baja Peninsula in 2004, conclusions that are nearly impossible not to draw from it are so reality warping that even the forward-thinking aerospace community doesn't seem to have even begun coming to terms with them.
The main revelation is that technology exists that is capable of performing flying maneuvers that shatter our perceptions of propulsion, flight controls, material science, and even physics. Let me underline this again for you, the Nimitz encounter with the Tic Tac proved that exotic technology that is widely thought of as the domain of science fiction actually exists. It is real. It isn't the result of altered perception, someone's lucid dream, a stray weather balloon, or swamp gas. Someone or something has crossed the technological Rubicon and has obtained what some would call the Holy Grail of aerospace engineering.” https://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zone/2 ... of-defense
So, who could be behind this? That’s the big question. There could only be a handful of countries (including the USA) or perhaps a private organization. If it were a private organization however, it would have to have one heck of a budget and access to a lot of high powered talent I would think.
I must admit, that after not having paid attention to UFO/UAP stories, reports, etc. for decades I am finding these recent developments very intriguing.