"my god, they're spraying us!" - dESMONTING CHEMICAL STELES OR "CHEMTRAILS".

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Zaragoza, February 28, 2024

Condensation trails, those long contrails that some believe are more than just ice crystals, produced by aircraft engines, have unleashed a host of conspiracy theories. Fact or paranoia?

Juan Luis Díez, CEO and pilot of AIR HORIZONT, gives us his expert view on this controversial topic.

With 35 years of experience in aviation, Juan Luis demystifies this phenomenon from his professional knowledge, addressing the scientific evidence and unsubstantiated arguments surrounding this hotly debated topic.

What is behind the chemtrails?

Find out in this article from an expert in the field.

Aviation conspiracy theories

There are several conspiracy theories involving aviation. The most famous have to do with the Roswell aliens or the tragic events of September 11, 2001.

However, there is one conspiracy theory that has a relevant number of "believers", and that is easily refuted by the simple laws of science.

These are, of course, chemtrails, also known as "chemtrails".

Those who subscribe to the "Chemtrail" theory believe that the entire aviation industry, military and civilian, is tasked by evil world governments to spray artificial clouds far above the ground, into our atmosphere, with the intention of altering our climate or inoculating the population with inhalant drugs with malicious intent.

How about explaining this whole chemtrail thing after all?

Science and history

Of course, personally, I am far from being an expert in chemistry, but it is enough to get some information, a very affordable task nowadays, about aerodynamics, atmosphere and aircraft engines, to have a fairly accurate explanation about the origin and formation of condensation trails - which is what we are talking about - and other similar sub-species, which feed the conspiracy.

When organic material is burned, different compounds are produced: soot, smoke and various oxides. What is produced will vary depending on the material that was burned and the process in which it was burned. However, there are two things that are generally universal in the burning of organic material; water and carbon dioxide.

Generally, none of these can be seen with the naked eye unless temperatures are cold and condense into visible water vapor. This is common in chimneys, automobile exhausts or even breath in the winter months.

A gasoline engine generates approximately one liter of water for every liter of gasoline consumed. When the engine is shut down, the remaining water oxidizes the exhaust and engine cylinders.This limits the life of the exhaust system and the engine, but it is not a major problem and is accepted as part of the normal process and life cycle of the internal combustion engine.

"My God, They're Fumigating Us!" -Disassembling Chemtrails - Air Horizon

It's not a chemtrail: vapor trails emanate from the four Wright 1820 engines of these B-17 bombers during World War II.

This seemingly innocuous water became lethal in World War II for bomber crews over Europe. The B-17's four Wright turbocharged engines - pictured here - allowed it to soar above 30,000 feet. The engines' wet exhaust froze rapidly in the air at -40 degrees Celsius (temperatures get significantly colder with increasing altitude), leaving long white clouds behind the bombers that indicated their presence and precise location to German fighters.

The relative safety of being at altitude was compromised by these telltale condensation trails or vapor trails. The Air Force worked to find a solution and discovered that certain acidic compounds injected into the exhaust eliminated the trails.

This solution became available after the end of the war but was immediately rendered obsolete with the widespread implementation of radar, which allowed aircraft to be "seen" regardless of the time of day or weather.

The jet aviation era

Postwar high-altitude commercial aircraft typically operated at about 25,000 feet. Only the low-production, and still propeller-driven, Boeing 377 could rise above 30,000 feet and was commonly operated as an intercontinental airliner. Because of this, vapor trails were rarely seen before the 1960s.

The year 1958 was a watershed year in commercial aviation, Boeing introduced the 707 and Douglas the DC-8, while a year later, Convair introduced the 880, powered by new turbojet technology.

The turbojet engines of these aircraft performed optimally in the cold, thin air above 30,000 feet and were routinely operated at these flight levels.

In the 1960s, vapor trails became commonplace around the world, especially along designated airways between ground-based navigational aids, when the temperature is low enough and the humidity high enough, the 5,000 liters of water produced each hour by these aircraft become cirrus clouds.

Not a chemtrail: a KLM 747-400 leaves four distinct trails in its wake as it flies over Russia. Image by Sergey Kustov.

The real chemtrails

The use of defoliants, chemical agents or pesticides, has been present in agriculture for decades, either to kill insect pests, eradicate weeds and unwanted vegetation in crops.

For the fumigation of large surfaces, small or medium-sized airplanes have been used, specially prepared with dispersion systems and tanks for this purpose, flying at very low altitudes to carry out the work, in the order of 30 meters or less, over the surface to be fumigated, since above this altitude, the dispersion of the sprayed agent loses concentration and, therefore, effectiveness.

Air Tractor AT-802, today's largest single-engine tractor for this function, spraying an agricultural field at low altitude.

Unfortunately, defoliants have also been used in the past for military purposes, as was the case during the Vietnam War, where the objective was to destroy the dense vegetation that concealed the movements of the Vietcong guerrillas, using the sadly famous "Agent Orange". These operations were also carried out at very low altitude in order to be effective on the vegetation layer.

Defoliant spraying, part of Operation Ranch Hand, during the Vietnam War by a UC-123B supplier aircraft. During this war defoliants and herbicides, such as Agent Orange, were used to remove leaves from trees and plants.

These are the real chemtrails, it is difficult to think that an airplane flying at 10 kms or more, could have any effectiveness in spreading any agent to affect the population or the climate, over the surface it flies over, the winds at altitude, the freezing, the dispersion due to the winds, would make such a "task" unthinkable, when really, it is required to fly very low to obtain the desired results.

When an aircraft does "unload something"....


Sometimes - very rarely - it is necessary to offload fuel to bring an aircraft to a safe landing weight, usually during an emergency.

I have personal experience in this, when after a takeoff with engine failure from Lima, we ejected 30 tons of fuel over the Pacific. The fuel disperses and evaporates before it hits the ground -or the water-.

Not a "chemtrail": this Saudia B-777 drops fuel over New York after declaring an emergency. Photo by Mark Hsiung.

Not a chemtrail: this Boeing 737-500 had too much fuel in its wing tanks. As it moved during takeoff, a small portion escaped through the vents. Photo by French Frogs Airslides.

Contrails" condensation trails

When the humidity is very high and the wind is light, the trails of en-route aircraft - photo - will remain for hours.

In conditions of moderate humidity, the contrails may last only a few seconds, as the ice is absorbed by the atmosphere in a process known as sublimation.

If the humidity is very low, the water vapor will be immediately absorbed by the atmosphere leaving the sky free of vapor trails.

Although engines produce numerous chemical compounds from the combustion of aviation fuel, the only one that can be seen at altitude is water in a frozen state - ice crystals.

The fuel burned in these engines is Jet-A, similar to kerosene, diesel and home heating oil, but formulated specifically for aviation use, and the extreme environmental conditions that are routine on every flight.

These "artificial" cirrus clouds reflect sunlight during the day and cool the surface. At night, they have the opposite effect, these clouds reflect the escaping heat and limit the lowering of surface temperatures, these contrails are visible in the ATC routes (airways) that cross our skies.

This is the real effect on the climate, unintended, moreover.

Condensation trails in ideal conditions for their formation: high humidity and low wind generate ice crystals that remain in the sky for hours.

Turbulence wake at low altitude

On rare occasions, at low altitude, when humidity is close to 100%, an aircraft may generate other types of contrails.

This is commonly seen in aircraft landing or taking off in conditions of low visibility - low clouds - or high humidity. The plane (wing) generates an area of low pressure on its surface that is a component of the lift it produces. Below the plane is an area of higher pressure that often escapes the plane surface at the tips and between the flap sections.

When this occurs, a vortex is generated, which is also the source of the turbulent wake. The air pressure in these vortices is lower than that of the surrounding atmosphere and with a drop in air pressure, there will be a corresponding drop in temperature.

If the temperature drops below the dew point - the temperature at which moisture is visible - water will come out of solution, i.e., it will condense and have the appearance of a cloud or fog.

The spectacular result isa tubular cloud coming out from between the flaps and can also be seen on the wing tips, on the propeller tips or covering the upper part of the plane, in the low pressure area.

High humidity takeoff of a B-777, spectacular condensation trail. Chicago O'Hre Plane Spotting.

Controversial "cloud seeding".

The use of silver iodide to cause precipitation or prevent hail from forming is a relatively simple procedure that has been in use for decades. Various methods can be used to deliver silver iodide to clouds, from small airplanes, rockets (very similar to classic fireworks) and even drones.

The cloud seeding technique consists of introducing elements such as silver iodide into the clouds once they are formed, which facilitates the formation of raindrops and their subsequent precipitation.

A technician prepares the cargo of silver iodide, sodium chlorite and potassium chlorite to be carried by an aircraft for a cloud seeding experiment in Bangalore, India, on August 21, 2017 (AFP / Manjunath Kiran)

All the tests that have been carried out for the manipulation of cloudiness have been focused on increasing the amount of precipitation, or otherwise to reduce the damage it can cause in the form of hail.

There is no documented evidence of any kind of experiment to provoke droughts, obviously, that goes against all human logic, and its use as a "weapon" is no less than science fiction.

Results with silver iodide, on the other hand, have never been conclusive. Moreover, all this is always done on a very local scale, since due to the nature and composition of the atmosphere it is absolutely unfeasible to interfere with it to change circulation patterns or generate rainfall on a massive scale, although this does not prevent countries such as China, India or Argentina from continuing to test this solution.

Conspiracy theory. Conclusion

The "religion" of the chemtrail followers considers that all these plausible explanations about the different trails produced by the planes are not by-products of the engine (or the planes) of the plane, but a deliberate action of the government(s), or of a supranational entity that controls them to modify the weather or to inoculate some substance to the population.

The conspiracy is at the behest of said entity(ies), and is implemented by the military(s), half the world's airlines, oil, software, AI, or pharmaceutical companies... and the hundreds of thousands of employees that would total between all these entities.

This movementcalls these man-made cirrus clouds "chemtrails" and claims to be able to identify the difference between them and the usual condensation trails, also identifies the days when the (global) program is in operation, the areas of "irrigation" and the additional equipment installed on the aircraft.

Such a movement, is a group of people who wish to be deceived and is driven by a very small group, who must no doubt, enjoy the deception and its mass dissemination through the ubiquitous social networks, using manipulated photographs of static airplane probes, stovepipes presented as chemtrail applicators, etc, and stories of people claiming to be mechanics, pilots and airport ramp workers, who fan the fires these people believe to be true. Some have even created "chemtrail predictions" based on actual weather data.

They even have the testimony of people living in rural areas close to ground-based navigation aid stations (large antennas) who, influenced by this "faith", feel that they are being targeted because of the volume of aircraft they observe overhead, when the number of vapor trails they observe is due precisely to their proximity to the stations mentioned and the course variations that are usually made over them.

Other "witnesses" claim to feel immediate effects of these "chemtrails", produced at a height of ten kilometers. However, in reality, the condensation is usually quickly removed from the area by the winds in the upper atmosphere, which normally blow at more than 150 km per hour.

These "conspiracy theorists" focus on any minuscule detail to support their theories, but do not recognize how impossible it is to maintain a conspiracy, when this would require hundreds of thousands of people, tens of airlines and numerous official departments of different countries collaborating around the world - which in itself would be a remarkable and unusual event.

The deception is not committed by governments or by all the agencies allegedly involved, but by a clearly small group of people who enjoy the game and feed the "world's largest conspiracy" which is not, the "victims" will continue to seek their confirmation bias, eliminating all truthful information that does not reaffirm their "faith", and when we enter the realm of personal beliefs, no matter how much technical and logical information is provided, nothing changes for them, because that is what they want to believe.

Temporary "Chemtrail" switch on one of our B737s

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