Cryptography & Electronic Warfare

© Brooke Clarke 2000 -2015

SOSUS & the Glomar Explorer
Pearl Harbor
Cryptographic Machines
Commercial Spy Satellite Imaging
Crypto Patents


The thing that turned me on to Cryptography was "The Ultra Secret" by F. W. Witherbotham, Dell Publishing, ISBN 0-440-19061-4 ( @Amazon ).  First printing 1975, my copy is 1979 Harper & Row did the reprinting.  This is the first book that I know of that told the story of the English GCHQ reading the very high level German Egnima ciphers at Bletchley Park.  This changed what I learned in my school history classes about W.W.II.

None of the information on these web pages is from any of my past work that involved security clearances.  I was a member of the Association of Old Crows (AOC) for about 25 years.  That was because much of the microwave electronics work I did was involved in Electronic Warfare (Wiki).  I developed and oversaw the production of a combined limiter-detector that was used in the ALR series of Radar Warning Receivers that protected our aircraft from ground radar guided missiles and guns in the Vietnam era also variants in Shrike (Wiki) and HARM (Wiki) during the Vietnam era.  This is described in a video tape by the AOC called "First in, Last Out".  In order to gather data for our electronic warfare systems the U.S.  flew over Russian radar installations. See Cold War Reconnaissance and the Shoot down Of Flight 60528. The Shrike missile used microwave detectors that were made using raw chips.  This missile has the steering wings located at it's center of mass so that when it steers, it moves sideways.  The AN/APR-39 was used with the ALR-xx series Radar Warning Receiver (RWR).


The Ultra Secret by Frederick William Winterbotham (@Amazon) - see above into paragraph.

The Code Breakers - The Story of Secret Writing, by David Kahn, MacMillan Publishing, ( @Amazon )First printing 1967, mine is ninth printing 1979. Library of congress Catalog Number 63-16109.  This is a very good overview of the history of cryptography. THE classic reference.

Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman! 1985,  information about defeating combination locks at Los Alamos during the Manhattan Project and many other interesting topics.

The Puzzle Palace, by James Bamford, Penguin Books, ISBN 0 14 00.6748 5 ( @Amazon ). First printed 1982, my copy is 1987.  This is the first book about the NSA.  At the time the book came out Washington called it "No Such Agency" but now we know it as the "National Security Agency" the U.S. center for codes and ciphers.

Body of Secrets is the latest book by Bamford about the NSA. is the Random House page for this book.

The Shadow Factory: The Ultra-Secret NSA from 9/11 to the Eavesdropping on America, 2008, by Bamford - how metadata (Wiki) from telephone billing records was used after 9/11 to track after the terrorists after the fact.
Also see: Spying on Cell Phones & Orion ST616-CBS fake cell site

No Such Agency Part Four Rigging the Game The Baltimore Sun, About December 4, 1995, pp. 9-11. Truman's 10/24/52 establishment of the NSA.

Body of Secrets : Anatomy of the Ultra-Secret National Security Agency : From the Cold War Through the Dawn of a New Century by James Bamford, Hardcover - 400 pages (April 24, 2001) Doubleday; ISBN: 0385499078 ( @Amazon ) - 

The Code Book by Simon Singh ( @Amazon )- Very good overview, understandable explanation of public key and the separate problem of a one way function. money challenge  also descriptions of how ancient languages are decrypted even nothing is known about the language.

American Black Chamber by Herbery O. Yardley ( @Amazon ) has been reprinted by Ballantine Books ( @Amazon ) as part of their Espionage/Intelligence Library ISBN 0-345-29867-5

Wilderness of Mirrors by David C. Martim ( @Amazon ), Ballantine Books as part of their Espionage/Intelligence Library 1981, ISBN 0-345-29636-2.
Dan Rowen, US mobsters, Marilyn Monroe, Kennedy, Bay of Pigs, Castro, aCIA tunnel under the East-West German border, and of course James Jesus Angleton, Cuban missile crisis - are all covered in this great book.

Handbook of Applied Cryptography, CRC Press (XX), ISBN: 0-8493-8523-7, October 1996, 816 pages - free chapters on line

Information and Secrecy by Colin B. Burke - 487 pages (June 1, 1994)  Scarecrow Press; ISBN: 0810827832 ( @Amazon )- has some information about the U.S. Bombe made by NCR (Dayton Daily News article) to break the German Sub 4 rotor Engima

The secret in Building 26, Jim DeBrosse & Colin Burke, Random House, 2004,  ISBN 0-375-50807-4 - The NCR newspaper article was expanded into this book.

The Ties That Bind by Jeffrey T. Richelson & Desmond Ball, ISBN 0-04-327092 1, first ed. 1985, Allen & Unwin Ltd.( @Amazon ) - Intelligence Cooperation between the UKSUA countries: United Kingdom, United States, Canada, Austraila and New Zealand.  Chapter 8: on SIGINT with info on RHYOLITE, AN/FLR-9.  Chapter 9: Ocean Surveillance has info on SOSUS, RDSS & SURTASS, Classic Wizard/White Cloud, P-3 Orion,  Holystone.  On pg. 225 -227 is an account of the Glomar Explorer and HMB-1 with 1985 info.

America's Secret Eyes in Space by Jeffrey T. Richlson, ISBN 0-88730-285-8 Harper & Row ( @Amazon ), 1990 The U.S. Keyhole Spy Satellite Program.

The Cuckoo's Egg by Clifford Stoll, Doubleday, ISBN 0-385-24946-2, First Edition Oct. 1989. ( @Amazon ) True story of tracking down an international spy that was using the internet.
Cliff's TED talk - Klein bottle business where I got the Chinese Spouting Bowl.- YouTube: The KGB, The Computer, and Me (Clifford Stoll: The Cuckoo's Egg) - C-Span testimony 1989 -

The Falcon and the Snowman by Robert Lindsey, Simon and Schuster ( @Amazon ), ISBN 0-671-24560-0 First edition 1979.  The true story of how a couple of spys in the mid 1970's sold the Russians secret codes for the TSEC/KW7 that was in a communications vault at TRW in Redondo Beach, CA.  I was working at TRW Microwave at the time and understand that a truck load of these books were sold to TRW.  28ASR 5 level Teletype machines used with KW-7 data encryption boxes mounted in racks.

Breaking The Ring by Johm Barron, Houghton Miffin Co.  ( @Amazon ) ISBN 0-395-42110-1 First edition 1987.  In June of 1979 the Russians were breaking the KL-47, KL-11, KW-26, Adonis, KW7 (see Falcon & Snowman above), KY-8, KG-14, KY-36 systems "with no problems" only the KWR-37 was giving them trouble.

The Man Who Broke Purple by Ronald Clark, Little, Brown and Company ( @Amazon ), ISBN 0-316-14595-5, First American Edition, 09/77.  The life of Col. William F. Friedman who deciphered the Japanese code used in WWII. Paper on Purple.  Friedman coined the term "cryptanalysis" (Kahn pg 371).

The Sigint Secrets by Nigel West, William Morrow and Company ( @Amazon ), ISBN 0-688-07652-1, First U.S. Edition, 1988.  Nigel makes a case that the Enigma was not broken using a cryptographic attack but rather based on poor operating practices that comprised the key setting.  He says that much can be learned about an enemy by listening to encrypted messages without decoding the messages.  This relates to traffic analysis, i.e. who talks to who, how many messages, how long are the messages, how strong is the signal, what bearing, etc..

Dark Waters: An Insider's Account of the NR-1, the Cold War's Undercover Nuclear Sub ( @Amazon ),  a small sub with tires it can "drive" on the botom.

Elementary Cryptanalysis a Mathematical Approach by Abraham Sinkov ( @Amazon ), The Mathimatical Association of America, LOC # 72-89953, copyright 1966 - This is an excellent book for understanding numerical methods and the application of computers.  The appendix has a number of basic programs.

If you are using a computer to decrypt messages, you need a way for the computer to know that it has succeeded.  I used the shape of the single letter frequency distribution.  By computing the square root of the sum of the squares of the distances and normalizing the result it's easy for the computer to solve Caesar shifts in <=26 tries.
This could be extended to general monoalphabetic cyphers by using a diagraphic frequency distribution.  For polygraphic cyphers you would need to also look at the diagonals (both 26  up and 26 down).

Cryptonomicon by Neal Stephenson ( @Amazon )- Novel incorporating descriptions of some crypto systems and actual events. 917 pages.  Counterpane Systems - Solitare - pontifex (Pearl-CGI)

AEGEAN PARK PRESS is was a publisher of declassified and interesting publications related to cryptography.

Cloak and Dagger Books a very large collection of out of print books.

Decrypted Secrets: Methods and Maxims of Cryptology by F.L. Bauer 4th ed,  2007, ISBN13: 978-3-540-24502-5

Signal Corps Bulletin 108  Jules Verne As A Cryptographer by Milton Friedman

SOSUS & the Glomar Explorer

History's Greatest Spy Technology - Documentary - SOSUS
SOSUS and the Ocean Systems Technicians MN11283 OT8 - inside of SOSUS station showing recorders
Project Caesar (LOFAR)
Report on Security of Overseas Transport. Volume 1. Project Hartwell. - see Sonobuoy Reference 4
Project Caesar Shore Analysis Equipment -
Game? involving subs

1970's SOSUS History - lots of acronyms

SUBMARINES, SECRETS AND SPIES - NOVA - SOSUS helps find Scorpion (Wiki) Craven helped find it. & K-129

The Glomar Explorer (Wiki) was built by Huges to raise a Russian sub.  Why is an interesting story.  Their cover story was that it was built to mine the ocean floor for mineral nodules.  The cover story lives even to this day.  The Glomar Explorer is is Suisun Bay on the East side of the highway 680 Martinez bridge.  The Hughes Mining Barge (Wiki) (HMB-1) is in Peat's harbor in Redwood City and if you know what you are looking for can see it from the Bayshore (101) freeway. (  no longer there)

ASME paper describing the engineering of the Glomar Explorer.

SOSUS (Wiki) is the Navy underwater sonar listening system that hears most subs in all the world's oceans.
SOSUS: The "Secret Weapon" of Undersea Surveillance - Navy web page

Cote, Owen R. Jr., “The Third Battle: Innovation in the U.S. Navy's Silent Cold War Struggle with Soviet Submarines ,” MIT Security Studies Program, March 2000 

Tyler, Gordon D., Jr., “The Emergence of Low-Frequency Active Acoustics as a Critical Antisubmarine Warfare Technology,” Johns Hopkins APL Technical Digest, Vol. 13, No. 1 (1992)

Urick, Robert J., Principles of Underwater Sound, 2nd Ed., McGraw-Hill, New York, 1975

Weir, Gary E., An Ocean in Common, Texas A&M, College Station, 2001

Additionally, two websites have provided useful information and general background: (Home page of the IUSS-Caesar Alumni Association)

1 In deep-water sound propagation, a convergence zone (CZ) is a circular ring of anomalously-low transmission loss that is caused at predictable distances from a submerged sound source by the near-surface bunching of sound rays that originally left the source over a narrow range of vertical angles. Typically, CZs appear at multiples of 30 to 35 miles from the source, but the specifics are highly dependent on the SVP and local bathymetry. Generally, much higher-than-normal target-detection probabilities are observed in the CZs.

2 By 1950, a Navy SOFAR explosion had been heard over 3,500 miles away. Moreover, several rudimentary experiments in tracking submarines with the net had shown favorable results.

3 When Ramey AFB was disestablished in 1973, the NAVFAC remained in operation but was renamed Punta Borinquen.

4 After NAVFAC Cape May was destroyed by a hurricane, it was replaced in 1962 by a new facility at Lewes, Delaware.

5 The initial first-generation SURTASS ship (Wiki) was USNS Stalwart (T-AGOS-1), commissioned in April 1984. The last of the 18 ships of that class entered service four years later.

6 John Walker, Jr. was a U.S. Navy warrant officer and career submarine communications expert who over a period of 15 years sold countless naval messages and the keys to decipher them to the Soviets, thus revealing a vast amount of highly sensitive information about U.S. naval operations and capabilities. Later, Walker recruited another Navy communications specialist, Jerry Whitworth, his brother, Arthur, and even his own son, Michael Walker, before he was turned in by his wife. All four men were arrested in 1985 and subsequently prosecuted, but by then, enormous damage to U.S. security had occurred.

7 By 1991, the existence and missions of SOSUS and IUSS had been formally declassified.

8 NOPF Dam Neck was established in 1980 as part of a major consolidation of the Western Atlantic arrays. NOPF Whidbey Island was created in 1987 to perform a similar function for the Pacific. The Joint Maritime Facility (JMF) St. Mawgan, operated in conjunction with the United Kingdom, replaced the former NAVFAC at Brawdy, Wales, in 1995.

The Third Battle: Innovation in the U.S. Navy's Silent Cold War Struggle with Soviet Submarines
A story about SOSUS paper grams. (The Intelligence Surveillance Reconnaissance page now requires registration.)
Official NOAA  SOSUS web page
Cable Repair Ship - T-ARC - Cable Repair Ship performs maintenance on the Sound Surveillance System (SOSUS)
Space & Naval Warfare Systems Command Awards Contract - includes SOSUS
USS SCORPION SSN-589 - Court of Inquiry Findings - heard by SOSUS breaking up
Deep Black: Space Espionage and National Security - William Burrows New York, Random House, 1986
Intelligence Resource Program - Sound Surveillance System (SOSUS) - great SOSUS page
Acoustical Society of America  - Some Interesting Sounds -
Defense-In-Depth: Design Notes - a high level discussion of a number of topics using game theory, but with a lot of facts
Sound Surveillance System (SOSUS) -
The Third Battle: Innovation in the U.S. Navy's Silent Cold War Struggle with Soviet Submarines -
IUSS Project Caesar Alumni Association - History 
Pembrokeshire "Oceanographic Research Station" -
A little SOSUS IUSS LOFAR History by Thomas Kimball - about Caesar & Jezebal Sonobuoys in the Bahamas

Books about the Glomar Explorer

2010 - Project Azorian by Norman Polmar & Michael White
The book follows the movie (see below) and has more details.

On the first page (pg 31) of Chapter 4 "A Series of Events" is this:

The K-129 (Wiki) should have been at about 172 deg 30 min E and 40 deg North at midnight on the night of March 7-8 (071200Z).

The book says the Soviets knew the Adak SOSUS hydrophones could detect a sub heading East from the Petro sub base so the K-129 sailed South along the 162E meridian It turned East at 40 North because the U.S. Navy had a no fly zone between 39 and 41 North to separate the ASW aircraft flying out of Adak (Wiki: 51N 176W) and those flying out of Barber's point. (Wiki: 21N 158W) The latitude that was half way between them would be 41N, but 40 N is a round number so this makes some sense.

If the destination station of the K-129 was about 34N 170W which is out of range of Pearl Harbor, so if given a strike order the sub would need to set sail, probably fully submerged.

The Michael White movie or book suggest that the SOSUS system was designed to detect sub noises and was not responsive to an explosion.  The system that detected the two hull crush implosions was designed by the Air Force to detect nuclear blasts (Wiki).

Both the SOSUS and AFTAC systems rely on an underwater channel that allows sound to propagate with a linear decrease in amplitude with distance instead of the common distance squared type of spherical propagation.  In a similar way there's a atmospheric sound channel.  For more see my Sonobuoy web page paragraph Roswell Connection.

19 Feb 2006 - Red Star Rogue ( @Amazon ) purchased because the review by Thomas J. Dougherty makes it sound reasonable, not just writing to get attention.  This book makes the case that the location of the K-129 was about 300 miles from Pearl Harbor and on board were an extra 11 men.  Maybe the KGB put the 11 man team on the sub and took it over.  The idea was to make it look like China had made the launch was the guilty party.  The plutonium was from china.  Nixon and Kissinger went for lifting the sub after the Halibut (Wiki) had already thoroughly photographed it.  Later Nixon may have used the idea that the KGB tried to fake a Chinese attack to cause both Russia and China to start peace talks. 
Red Star Rogue official web page - with photos

But even now the U.S. is not talking about the details.  This sure looks more and more like a chess game.

In The Silent War (below) Craven said the sub was located at the intersection of Lat-Lon where both were integers but gave the CIA cover location of 180 W by 40 N degrees.  In Red Star Rogue the location again is stated to be at an integer degree location because that's required for a Chinese nuke launch, but this time the location is given as 163W by 24 N.  Note that the Craven location is where the K129 crossed the international date line (180 degrees E or W are the same) and where it failed to report back using a burst transmission. (Note that the Elephant cage, Wullenweber, Circularly Disposed Antenna Array type (Wiki) of receiving systems were built to receive and get bearings on burst transmissions from Russian Subs.)

The K129 patrol box centered at 168W x 30.8N is about 776 SM from Pearl Harbor which is about the max range of the upgraded Golf II missile system, but the Chinese missile system has a shorter range and the distance from the K129 wreckage to Pearl Harbor is only 487 NM (560 SM).  On the first page of chapter 9 (pg 94) it's stated that the distance from the K129 to Pearl Harbor is about 160 miles (Statute or Nautical it's specified) which seems to be a disconnect with the map and coordinates on page 85.

Note that it was only 9 days between 8 May 1968 when the K129 sank and 17 May, 1968 when the Scorpion went down.  There's a good chance that the Soviets thought the K129 sank because of U.S. actions and sank the Scorpian in retaliation.

Oct 2005 - email from someone who worked on the Glomar Explorer, after reading this web page.  So maybe Craven's book is part of a cover story??
Dark Waters: An Insider's Account of the NR-1, The Cold War's Undercover Nuclear Sub by Lee Vyborny & Don Davis, 2004 - about the NR-1 (Wiki) used to tap Soviet undersea cables.  It has truck tires on the bottom to allow rolling on the sea floor.
'The Silent War by John Piña Craven ( @Amazon ), A Touchstone Book 2002, ISBN 0-684-87213-7 (25 years after the book "A Matter of Risk")
John wrote this book based on his own knowledge and involvement in the events described.  He says that our first knowledge of the missing Russian sub was the open search by the Russians.  We later discovered the SOSUS indications that the sub had gone down at 180.0 Lon x 40.0 Lat (about 2,000 miles NW of Hawaii) a point more than 300 miles off the course the Russians were searching.  Doing underwater explosions as part of the research related to the Scorpion sinking led John to speculate that the explosion recorded at 180x40 had to be very loud, not something caused by an air tank imploding.  Also the sub sank without the normal sounds of locked compartments imploding, meaning that the hatches were all open.  This and other evidence indicated the sub was a rogue and the crew had attempted to launch a nuke missile at Hawaii, but to do this they attempted to over ride control systems that probably caused the missile to destroy itself and in the process ignited the liquid fuel carried on board the sub, causing a fire and explosion.

At that time the U.S. had the capability to do an underwater recovery to confirm the rouge nature of the sub, but instead the Glomar Explorer was constructed and deployed.  One explanation for this is that the U.S. wanted the Russians to be aware that we might make make the evidence public that they had a rouge sub, and hence that they had lost control of their forces.  President Nixon presented the crew of the Halibut, in Hawaii, the Presidential Unit Citation.  He flew there in a secret way and not on Air Force One and there is speculation that he had some other meeting, probably with a Russian, to let them know about their rouge sub.
26 Dec 2004 - some research on the sub and what weapons it was carrying.  The K-129 Diesel-electric was first called B-103 and later renamed K-129 (probably when converted to a Golf II).  A 629 Golf class boat carrying liquid-propellant R-11FM with the 0.5 megaton RDS-4 nuclear explosives and/or R-13 missiles.  14 of the project 629 subs were converted to 629A Golf II class carrying the D-4 launch system and R-21 missiles with a 1400 km range.   IOC was 1963.

"On 15 May 1963 deployment of the D-4 launch system on Golf and Hotel submarines began. The R-21 remained in operational service from 1963 to 1989, during which time 193 out of a total of 228 launches were successful. Over this period the service life of the fueled missile was increased from six months to two years."
The K-129 was upgraded to 629A class, see:  Steel in the Deep 

Note the Hawaiian islands span a distance of 1,970 to 3, 010 km from 180 Lon x 40 N Lat. (according to my globe) so if the K-129 was a Golf class then it's missile range would have been only 150 km.  But a Golf II class sub carries R-21 (SS-N-5) missiles that have a range of  875 NM (1,400 km) and a payload somewhere in the 0.8 to 3.5 MT area.  A 1 MT warhead has a 50% kill radius less than 20 km so it's hard to see how a Golf II sub at 180x40 could attack any of the Hawaiian islands, but is in range of Midway.  165x35 or 175x25 would get in range of Necker which is West and North of Hawaii.  But in the book A Matter of Risk, the sinking subs location is given as 750 miles NW of Hawaii which would be about 165 x 30 N.  Being the first book on the subject it may be wrong.

The Amazing Story of the K129 -

April 2000 Update

A couple of years ago, the Navy leased the Glomar Explorer to Global Marine, (the original contractors) for 30-years. After 20-years in mothballs, the GE was converted to a drill ship, and is currently drilling off of the coast of Nigeria. It is scheduled to return home in 3- to 4-weeks, to resume drilling in the GOM.
State-of-the-Art Drill Ship Conversion by Cascade General
Glomar Explorer (AG 193) (ex-Hugh Glomar Explorer) at the Naval Vessel Register -

November 6, 2000 Russian merchant ships used in spying (this has been going on for as long as I can remember) - laser zapped eyes of 2 in helicopter.  Blackbird.pdf a novel by Craig J. Coley about a similar situation.

Blind Man's Bluff : The Untold Story of American Submarine Espionage, by  Sherry Sontag  ( @Amazon ) 1998 PublicAffairs; ISBN: 1891620088  "Most of the stories in Blind Man's Bluff have never been told publicly," they write, "and none have ever been told in this level of detail." Among their revelations is the most complete accounting to date of the 1968 disappearance of the U.S.S. Scorpion (Wiki); the story of how the Navy located a live hydrogen bomb lost by the Air Force; and a plot by the CIA and Howard Hughes to steal a Soviet sub. The most interesting chapter reveals how an American sub secretly tapped Soviet communications cables beneath the waves. Blind Man's Bluff is a compelling book about the courage, ingenuity, and patriotism of America's underwater spies.

Spy Sub by Roger C. Dunham ( @Amazon ) An Onyx Book, 1997, ISBN 0-451-40797-0
This book is mostly about what it's like to serve on a sub, the Halibut, written by one of those in control if it's nuclear reactor.  But it does talk about them finding and photographing the Russian sub that later was picked up by the Glomar Explorer.  The photos taken by the Halibut provided much of the evidence that the sub was a rouge. 

Spy Sub is the tale of a top-secret submarine named Halibut that lowered miles and miles of special cable along the bottom of the Pacific Ocean in order to investigate a sunken Soviet sub. The mission was such a success that the Halibut itself received a Presidential medal in a secret ceremony. It's a true story, even the part about the sub getting a medal. Roger C. Dunham, a nuclear reactor operator on board the Halibut during the mission, provides a firsthand account of an aspect of Cold War espionage that has only recently begun to surface. To this day, the Pentagon refuses to acknowledge such missions, in all likelihood because they are still going.

The Jennifer Project by Clyde W. Burleson ( @Amazon ), 1997 Texas A&M University Press; ISBN: 0890967644 The Jeniffer Project tells, documentary style, of the most difficult deep-sea salvage mission of all time, the CIA's effort to raise a Russian missile submarine that sank 750 miles northwest of Hawaii in 1968. Political infighting between the White House, the Pentagon, and a few select members of Congress changed a mission that was to be accomplished by small remote submarines (ala Bob Ballard/Titanic) to one which spent in excess of $200 million dollars to research, design, and built the Glomar Explorer, a one-of-a-kind salvage ship under the cover story that it was to be used by Howard Hughes to mine the world's oceans.

Other books since the original 1977 publication have shed more light on the story ("Spy Sub" & "Blind Man's Bluff" for example) of how involved the salvage mission really was. Most reports say the mission was a failure, and only part of the submarine was recovered. But one question has yet to be answered: If the submarine was to be brought up in one piece, as nearly every story written about it has stated, how then does one pull a 300+ foot long sub up through an opening of 199 feet, which was the length of the "moon pool" in the bottom of the Glomar Explorer. A very good docu-story. (ans: in three separate lifts.)   Table of Contents

"S.J. Mercury, 5 Nov. 1982 dateline San Francisco- The world's first fully submersible dry dock, built as part of a CIA plan to raise a sunken Soviet sub, is being claimed by the Navy for a new secret project, it was reported Thursday.  Navy officials said they have asked the National Park Service to turn over the Hughes Mining Barge-1 (HMB-1), which is docked at Todd Shipyards in San Francisco.  They plan to move it to Redwood City for use in a Lockheed Missiles and Space Co. project "in which the Navy has an interest." said Lt. Commander Tom Jurkowsky, a Navy spokesman. He declined to elaborate."

A Matter of Risk
by Roy Varner & Wayne Collier, Ballantine Books 1978 ( @Amazon ), ISBN 0-345-28639-1  First Edition May 1980.  This is the story of the Glomar Explorer built by Howard Hughes to recover the crypto equipment from a Russian Golf-class sub K-129 that sank 3 miles deep about 750 miles NW Pearl Harbor on 11 April 1968 heard by the SOSUS  (see 1968) (SOSUS Museum). 

Project Azorian: The Story of the Hughes Glomar Explorer

Fifty page SECRET document declassified and made public on 12 Feb 2010 at the National Security Archive web page.  Jennifer was the project name for the cover story.  Azorian was the overall recovery project.  There was just a single lift and the sub was recovered.

Movie: Azorian: The Raising of the K-129 by Michael White

2010 - it's being shown in Europe, but not in the U.S.  Maybe related to too much U.S. editing by PBS.  The DVD available is only available in PAL format (not the U.S. NTSC format).  I have it on order in the hopes that one of my DVD players will work on the Home Theater system.  Ray Feldman worked at LMSD and on the Glomar Explorer and was an adviser on the film.  He has written reviews about books on the Glomar Explorer and put me onto the author Roman Polmar and in particular "Cold War Subs" ( @Amazon ).

19 Apr 2010 - the PAL DVD arrived and it plays with no problem on my Home Theater Blue-Ray player. 

The movie does not address what caused the K-129 to sink or what was learned after examining the recovered front half of it.  There are a lot of computer generated graphics of the Glomar Explorer and related vessels.  There are also some still and movie clips that were taken at the time.

Project Jennifer was the project for generating cover stories for secret operations.  Project Azorian was the project to raise the K-129.  I think while the movie was being made the name Azorian was still classified and it's only in early 2010 that the name Azorian became public, hence Michael White's web page is Project Jennifer, but the released DVD is called Project Azorian.

The movie is about the Glomar Explorer and the related vessels used to raise the K-129.  Early in the film there's a plot of the K-129's course which looks like a straight line, then a turn at 40 degrees North and continuing along the 40 degree latitude line until it gets to the international date line (180 degrees longitude((it doesn't matter if you call it West or East))).  The explosions (there were two of them some minutes apart) happened shortly after midnight).
Azorian Ch2 2:40 Map + Marking
This map showing the path of K-129 taken from the movie at 2:40 into the film. 

I have added the Lon and Lat labels and the735 nm long yellow line between the sub and Midway.

It shows the path of the K-129 leaving the Naval Base on 25 Feb 1968 heading South East then making a turn at 40N, going to 180 Lon and sinking on 11 March 1968 at  midnight, but the printed explosion report says 12:mm:ss and in military time that would be noon in England and midnight on the international date line.

The three 1 mega ton missiles had a range of 755 nm.  Note Midway is within range, but the Hawaiian Islands are not in range.
Azorian Ch2 3:16 Lat Lon
Copy of some document relating to determining the location of the sub based on the sound of the hull imploding.  The position of these explosions is given as:
40.1N by 179.9E at 2800 fathoms.

Also note the sub was 600 nm off the path where the Russians were searching.  i.e. the sub was not where it was supposed to be.
Azorian Ch2 5:12 First Explosion
Azorian Ch2 5:12 First Explosion time

The times are when the explosion was heard at different stations.  The top to bottom order of the stations is the same in both images.  For example station 1 at the top heard the first explosion at 12:18:56 and the second explosion at 12:24:55.

Since the explosions that were heard on the AFTAC system were caused by the hull imploding it's a good guess that something happened on the surface at exactly midnight and it took about 15 minutes for the sub to sink to a deepth where the hull would implode.
Azorian Ch2 5:21 Second Explosion
Azorian Ch2 5:21 Second Explosion time
AFTAC stations and the two implosions.
The speed of sound in sea water varies between 1480 (0.80 nm/sec) and 1560 m/s (0.84 nm/sec) depending on depth.
Table Distance SOUS stations to sub
Dist nm to
40N 180
Time mm:ss
@ 0 km depth
Time mm:ss
@ 5.5 km depth
Adak Wake Kaneohe Midway
176.64 W
51.78 N
166.63 E
19.3 N
157.78 W
21.4 N
177.35 W
28.2 N
139.77 E 35.7 N
Based on this table the stations should hear the explosion in the following order:  35°41′N 139°46′E
either Adak or Midway at the same time, then,
Wake, then
Kaneohe, then
the fifth unidentified station (most likely Japan probably because it's measured time between the first and second implosions differed from all the other stations indicating that something was wrong with it's data.)

Table: SOUS stations time of arrival.  This data is not consistent with the above order of arrival.  If station 2 is Adak or Midway then there should be another time for Explosion 1 very near 12:14:30 for Midway or Adak.
Exp 1
Exp 2
Exp 1: Station# - Station 2
Exp 2: S#-S2

16 Aug 2014 - Maybe if a set of equations were written with the speed of sound as a variable that was the same for all stations (really not true) and solved for the best fit an approximate location could be found that should be near 40N x 180.  The Navy probably has a ray trace sound propagation software package that can be used with the approximate location and the known location of each receiving station with a more accurate propagation time for that specific path.

The CIA's Greatest Covert Operatioon:  Inside the Daring Mission to REcover a Nuclear-Armed Soviet Sub, David H. Sharp, 2012, Remaining Mysteries:
  1. The actual intelligence that was gleaned from the sub
  2. What the intelligence community knows about the cause of the K-129 loss
  3. What would have happened if the Glomar Explorer was capture

Pearl Harbor

The U.S. handling of the secret messages has been thoroughly investigated with the conclusion that there were a number of mistakes.  My own theory is based on the fact that England had a well oiled system of intercepting, decrypting, and disseminating the fruit of the intercepted messages.  The method of communication at the time was H.F. radio that not only goes to the recipient but also "skips" all over the world.  I think that England received the same messages that the U.S. did, but unlike us, both decoded them and understood what they meant. I believe that England communicated to the U.S. that Pearl Harbor would be attacked and about when.

In Jan. 1941 Abe Sinkov, Leo Rosen, Robert Weeks and Prescott Currier hand delivered to B.P. a working Purple machine, a kana typewriter, and stacks of documents.   Starting Feb. 1941 SIS and OP-20-G the Purple messages were read almost currently. (from a book about Purple.)  This may not be too important if JN25 was used for pre attack messages, or they may have gleaned some info from Purple. 

Commercial Spy Satellite Imaging

Under 1 Meter Resolution

Digital Globe - Moffett Field in Mountain View also showing Ames Research wind tunnels. 0.61 meter monochrome and 2.44 meter multi spectral.
They supply Google Maps with the images.  You can enter a Latitude and Longitude (degrees.fraction N/S degrees.fraction E/W) and get satellite imagery.  Click on the Satellite link at the upper right for photos rather than maps.
Here's the Blue Cube in Sunnyvale, CA.

1 Meter Resolution

These companies started offering in 1999 high resolution 1 meter photographs made to order.
Prior to this the resolution was 5 meters or greater.

Autometric - incorporated in Cayman Islands
Earth Watch Inc. - Quickbird 1 -
Space Imaging, Inc. - Ikonos -
Orbital Imaging Corp. - OrbView-3 and OrbView-4 - in full minute increments with a minimum requirement of a continuous two-minute imaging window. The pricing is $10,000 per minute
FAS - Imint Gallery -
Global Security - Picture of the Week (click on image for new web page)

5 Meter & Greater Resolution

SPOT - French - 5 - 10 meter
Terra Server - my locationN39:11:24.692 - W123:09:50.548 -
USGS - National Mapping and Remotely Sensed Data - Earth Resources Observation System (EROS Data Center) - Multispectral Scanner Landsat Data - 50 meter
Earth Observing System Data Gateway -

? Resolution
GlobeXplorer - works like Terra Server

Web Links

News Groups: sci.crypt & sci.crypt.research

Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) - on the  NIST   Encryption web page that also has some declassified information on KEA and Skipjack
Association of Old Crows - for people involved in Electronic Warefare
Cryptographic Module Validation (CMV) Program -
Air Force Technical Applications Center - McClellan Air Force Base -  responsibility for managing the Atomic Energy Detection System [AEDS] discovering foreign atomic tests and other nuclear weapons related activities
Alan Turing Home Page   by the author of a book about the man who thought of the "Turing Machine" and developed code breaking computers in England
alt.locksmithing answers to Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)( @Amazon )

American Cryptogram Association   Publishes a periodical every other month, has booklets on how to solve, etc.+ many good web links, Schneier.disks -
Applied Signal Technology - makes equipment used in ECHELON
Army Communicator - Radio-traffic analysis' contributions in WWII
Art of Computer Programming, Volume 4 by Donald E. Knuth ( @Amazon )
Batlabs - Motorola Radio & pager info
Breaking the WWII German Enigma machine by the Polish - Good revues of books and bibliography
British Security Service (MI5) -
Build a POCSAG decoder using a BRAVO receiver board instead of a scanner -
Bus Tour Reveals Spy Hot Spots in U.S. Capital By Tabassum Zakaria
Camp-X - Canadian training camp for U.S. W.W. II spys
Center for the History of Defense Electronics (CHiDE) Virtual Museum Home Page  See my Electronic Warfare page
CIA 1994 World Fact Book -
CIA Using 'Data Mining' Technology to Find Nuggets - Yahoo news
Clarinet Pilgrim (CP) - Using Loran-C to carry digital data, now the method may be used to improve GPS reliability for aircraft
Classical Cryptography Course by Lanaki -
CNN - Cold War - Espionage page - links -
Code breaking and Secret Weapons in World War II
Coder's Lagoon - software source and active-X code
Codes and Ciphers in the Second World War- by Tony Sales 1st curator of the Bletchley Park Museum - excellent info on Colossus, Enigma the movie, and origional documents relating to Enigma
Cold War Infrastructure of the Nation's Capital Region by Albert LaFrance
Cold War International History Project - Library -
Counterpane Systems - web page for consulting firm - supporting IACR - Solitarefrom the book Cryptonomicon -
Cracking DES at Electronic Frontier Foundation -
Crypt Newsletter by George C. Smith
Crypto AG - Crypto AG: NSAs Trojan WhoreNSA, Crypto AG, and the Iraq-Iran Conflict - more about them - I don't have any information on this, but it sounds plausible.  More info at the Baltimore Sun search page
Crypto Machines by Jerry Proc - Photo & descriptions on many machines,
Crypto News Stories -
Crypto Simulation Group - Gallery of graphical simulated machines
Cryptographic Modules, Validated FIPS 140-1 by NIST
Cryptologic Quarterly (formerly the NSA Tech. Journal) -
cryptography-digest - archive
Cryptology by Frode Weierud - links to papers and software
CRYPTOLOGIA is a Journal with articles on advanced Cryptographic topics.
Cryptograms on Gold bars from China - a mystery
Cryptographic Compendium  by John J. G. Savard - broad overview of many topics
Cryptome -
Cypherpunks - Berkeley
David Hamer - parts, manuals, supplies and complete machanical machines for sale or trade
DefenseLINK - the official web site for the Department of Defense and the starting point for finding U.S. military information online
Duncan Campbell - English Investigative journalist & TV producer - 1999 STOA Report on communications intelligence - The original 1988 ECHELON report -
Eavesdroppers - Links -
ECHELON: America's Secret Global Surveillance Network - NSA monitors about everything
Electric Goon- Story of the EC-47
Encryption Protocols for Radios - look under general scanning information
end of the code war? - quantum keys must be sent to a single recipient by means of a light beam
CIPHERS: Enigma Machine - Turing Machine - Turing Test - Alan Turing - Lessons - Resources  at University of Arizona -  -
enigma-the movie -
ENIGMA: History, Technology and Deciphering, The Story of the - CD-ROM for sale
Enigma machine constructed in modern times "CODING MACHINE"
Replica Enigma M4 -
Enigma-E  is an electronic functional equivalent of the mechanical machine - Geoff's Enigma-E Mods & Additions
Enigma simulators for various opertin systems including Palm OS
Equipment - that can be repaired by the Navy repair facility in San Diego including Equip -vs- Battery table
Extremely Low Frequency Communications Program -
Federation of American Scientists (FAS) - a HUGE resource on many programs - Signals Intelligence and Communications Security on the Web -
    - International Intelligence Officer Advanced Course -
Fialka - Dissassembly of the model M-125-3MN/-3MP3 Fialka - color photos
FM 34-40-2 Basic Cryptanalysis - Army Field Manual - as zip file -
Welcome to Toby's Cryptopage! - From the archives ( Section featuring released WWII cryptographic documents from the archives of the Swedish signal intelligence organisation) by Torbjörn Andersson
Geoff's Crypto page - aka The Crypto Barn
German counterintelligence service - Bundesamt fuer Verfassungsschutz (BfV)
Godzilla Crypto Tutorial -
Guide to Lock Picking -
Herberton Spy and Camera Museum -
If it had not been for 15 minutes...  includes a little info about numbers stations & some photos
Info on Digital Radio Encryption -
Intelligence and CounterIntelligence a web page with maybe a thousand web links
Intelligence Resource Program - FAS -
Interception Capabilities 2000 by Duncan Campbell -
International Association for Cryptologic Research - (IACR) is a non-profit scientific organization whose primary purpose is to further research in Cryptology and related fields. IACR is involved in a variety of activities described here. Theory of Cryptography Library - at UCSD -
International Cryptography - Links to Software, algorithms, etc.
International  Cryptography Freedom -
International PGP Home Page - English PGP links -
ITAR - International Traffic In Arms Regulations - some crypto software and  radios are considered "munitions" and/or "armaments" hence the above groups
Junger v. Daley - court case involving export of crypto material
KAL61 KTC 1400 C- DRYAD authentication system
Keys from the web - 64, 128 and  256 bit keys in hex notation
Kremlin SDK - by Mach5 Software - Archives - basic concepts - algorithms - Crypto-Tech Mailing List -> - Include in the body of the message the text: 'subscribe' with your email address NOT
Laws of Cryptography by Neal R. Wagner - on line overview
LinkPlus - voice cipher chips, cards
List of nomenclatures - with data base preambles
mils Electronic - random key generation based products
Missile Silo Tour -
Mobile Data Terminal (MDT) - the digital coms between police cars and their base station re. auto plates and criminals (search on Mobile Data Terminal for more info)
Motorola DVP - and patent links 4,167,7005,301,232 & 5,528,691 - D390,554
National Security Archive - at Geroge Washington University - Electronic Breifing Books -
National Intelligence Book Center - a very good set of intelligence web links - Surveillant - subscription information - Sample Issue with many annotated book reviews
Nautilus - now a museum
Navy Data Cryptographic Security Products - Photographs, Specifications, Y2K compliance, Price, etc. on over 2 dozen systems.
Navy Documentation - Security related to computers, etc.
Nigel West - I have many of his books
NCR develops a Bombe to break the German Sub 4 rotor Enigma - Dayton Daily News - Local copy of the NCR series  - Montgomery County Historical Society by John Ackermann of NCR
NR-1 - a small nuclear sub designed for very deep spy missions
NSA - Korean War Commemoration -
NSA Bibliographies - result of FOIA 17 Aug 2006
NSA abandons wondrous stuff - Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute -
NSA William F. Friedman NSA Collection - 7,617 documents including some Riverbank publications.
NSDPGP - PGP software
NYC Surveillance Cameras -
On Enigma and a Method for its Decryption -
One-Time-Pad Frequently Asked Questions - with photo of Russian miniture OTP
One-Time Pad Generator - Java Script that runs on your computer by John Walker
Paladin Press - long time book dealer
Pager Hardware Reprogramming & Paging Protocols -
Pretty Good Privacy Cyrptology Privacy Specifications Associations and E-Mail  - many good links from Disaster Center -
Privacy International - watchdog on "surveillance by governments and corporations"
Probability of Intercept - a simple paper I wrote describing the concept
Public Surveillance Technology - CCTV camera based, license plates, face, ..
Purple - history and operation of the Japanese cipher machine
Quantum Information at Los Alamos National Laboratory  -
Radio intelligence operators - job description
Richard Brissons's Collection page - a number of crypto machines, mostly rotor based, and kids codes info
Ritter's Crypto Glossary and Dictionary of Technical Cryptography - Technical Cryptographic Terms Explained
RSA Labratories - Tech Notes - theoretical papers on cryptography
SC Magazine - information security magazine
Secret Code Breaker On Line - some tools for simple ciphers
A Secret Landscape - The Cold War Infrastructure of the Nation's Capital Region
Self-Study Course in Block Cipher Cryptanalysis - Counterpane systems
Spectrum magazine - Intelligence Surveillance Reconnaissance - now requires registration, I have submitted will know in a couple of days.
Side Channel Cryptanalysis of Product Ciphers - Similar to Tempest, but more modern - using information caused by the system rather than a direct attack
Tamam Shud - Blog by member of Association of Former Intelligence Officers - Spy Museum includes some cipher devices
TICOM Archive: Secret Intelligence in Nazi Germany -


Dirk Rijmenants - Enigma - M-209
Stenography & Digital Information Hiding - Hiding text in images "Stenography" by Neil F Johnson
Sounds of digital Radio -
Special Electronic Mission  Aircraft (SEMA) - Vietnam era Fixed-wing Systems operated by the US Army Security Agency
Spooks Newsletter - Information on HF radio numbers stations - World's First Cryptomachine 1786 -
Spy Busters - Murray Associates  many practical hints to avoid industrial espionage
SpyCafe -
Spy & CounterSpy - Spy school for the rest of us... - How to ...
Spy satellites enter new dimension - dialog box with many satellites
Stealth - Not what its cracked up to be at Flight Journal -
Strategic Intelligence - A MUST SEE WEB SITE - Military Intelligence at Loyola College -
Strong cryptography makes the world a safer place  by William Knowles
Submarine - Overall Communications -
Submarine Communications Shore Infrastructure -
U.S. Clandestine Radio Equipment -
US4052565: Walsh function signal scrambler - describes the basics of voice scrambling, 55 other patents call this one
US3746799: Method and Apparatus for Encoding and Decoding Analog Signals -  issues/filed July 17, 1973 / Sept. 27, 1971
US Government Agencies in the Intelligence Community
USS PAMPANITO (SS-383)   Sub in S.F. bay - Excellent web pages - a must browse
Visionics - FaceIT - Face Recognition Home Page - Breaking in: Face Recognition Systems (and related Biometrics links) ZDNet
Virtual World of Intelligence - many well organized links
Venona - breaking the Soviet codes and the NSA Verona page
Walsh Functions are most likely the basis of modern voice encryption like the XOR function is used for digital encryption.( (Walsh) <in> AB) or ( (walsh) <in> TI)
Why Cryptography Is Harder Than It Looks - Counterpane systems
World Wide Intelligence and Security Organizations (WWISO) - lots of links
Worldwide Utility News (WUN) - Digital Sounds - Digital Signals FAQ -
WWII web ring - all kinds of factual information


Let me know about this radio control/crypto? device.
Unknown Motorola Radio control/crypto device

My web page

Alphabetical List, Brooke's Home, Crypto MachinesMilitary Information, Electronics, Page

Page created: 30 Jan. 2000.