UFO research is stigmatized. NASA wants to change that.

It wasn't always so difficult to believe in aliens. Eerie tales of extraterrestrial visitors have dominated pop culture and the public awareness for the past century. The idea of blaming the unexplainable on extraterrestrials, on the other hand, dates back to the ancient Greeks, whose philosophers were among the first to propose that life on Earth might have originated from another planet.

UFO sightings and alien myths have only recently become more prevalent in human history. According to research, this type of "pseudoarchaeology" is becoming more popular on the internet, at the same time that contemporary technology allows more individuals to capture images, share movies, and post reports of strange data, providing more material for conjecture and even government investigations.

However, there is a big stigma associated with bringing up aliens and UFOs in serious talks for scientists and military personnel who compile this proof and throw their hats in with sincere believers.

The shame and, at times, criticism associated with reporting unidentified aerial phenomena, or UAPs, may fade as NASA prepares to launch a surprisingly thorough inquiry into the phenomenon. The Department of Defense (DOD) also recently established a UAP task group, however the two missions are managed separately. Although NASA has stated that there is no evidence that these objects are extraterrestrial in origin, the agency is uniquely positioned to determine whether UAPs pose a real threat to research and military aircraft flying within US airspace, thanks to access to thousands of hours of both classified and public aerial data.

Thomas Zurbuchen, NASA's associate administrator for the science mission directorate, said the agency will focus on identifying available data, how to best collect future data, and how to use this data to advance scientific understanding of UAPs during a news conference announcing the study's formation earlier this month.

When the topic of normalizing UAP discourse in research settings came up, Zurbuchen expressed his hope that the study will communicate that science is a process that seeks to uncover the truth underlying any and all difficulties, including the concept of unexplained sky sightings.

"To tell you the truth, I believe there is new science to be discovered," he stated. "A lot of times, something that appeared to be practically supernatural turned out to be a novel scientific consequence." For example, before their peculiar shine was shown to be created by reflecting sunlight, noctilucent clouds—Arctic clouds that give off a silver-blue glow—were once connected to enigmatic origins.

The investigation will span nine months, but NASA has stated that its findings would be made public after the mission is completed in the interest of transparency. The move may inspire people to have more open and informed discussions about aliens, however it's unclear if it will permanently remove the stigma.

According to Seth Shostak, a distinguished astronomer at the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) Institute, one out of every three people thinks UAPs are alien spacecraft. Greater government-backed reports make it simpler to analyze the phenomenon, but it also puts it under more scrutiny than in previous years. While many people believe that unexplained events can sometimes have supernatural origins, Shostak argues that convincing a space scientist that aliens walk among us is difficult.

"If you believe that those are alien craft or not some type of drones, you won't find many experts who believe there's anything to the UAP phenomenon," he says.

While reports of menacing saucers flying past planes or disappearing into the sea have long been dismissed as conspiracy theories, educated specialists who believe in extraterrestrials have historically faced ridicule, scepticism, and social excommunication. Ironically, one SETI researcher and proponent of extraterrestrial activity became an online meme.

The primary difference between astronomers seeking for life in the cosmos and extraterrestrial hunters on Earth, according to Shostak, is where they hope to find it. Astrobiologists search the solar system for chemical indications of life, but only UAP believers are concerned about whether there are sentient entities capable of abducting cows and returning them to Earth.

It's also not as if the government has always been dismissive to alien concerns. "The military has always been interested in these UFO reports," Shostak explains, "because if there's something in our airspace, we certainly need to know about it."

For example, between 1947 and 1969, Initiative Blue Book, a top-secret Air Force project aimed at cataloging and understanding UAPs, logged over 12,000 UAP sightings. The Roswell Incident, America's most iconic extraterrestrial enigma, and claims of UAPs appearing during NATO's war game, Exercise Mainbrace, in 1952 were two of these instances.

However, air incidents involving UAPs have grown in recent years, prompting the Department of Defense and other federal agencies to urge workers to speak up following encounters. However, encouraging people to come forward is a challenge that is easier said than done.

The Airborne Object Identification and Management Synchronization Group was established by the Department of Defense last year to move UAPs away from the periphery of scientific concern. The group's mission is to discover and identify things of interest that could represent a "national security threat." Congress made a step forward in recognizing UAP cases earlier this year when it convened its first public hearing on the subject in 50 years.

Pentagon officials stated during the hearing that the number of UAPs reported by pilots and other military members had lately increased to 400. After learning more about the occurrences, Ronald Moultrie, the Biden administration's under secretary of defense for intelligence and security, expressed confidence that the government would be able to strike a "delicate balance" between public trust and protecting service members in the sky.

"Any object that we encounter may likely be isolated, described, identified, and, if necessary, neutralized" by combining suitably formatted collected data with rigorous scientific research, according to Moultrie. Other sources also stated that the stigma associated with UAPs has historically hampered information gathering, and that the DOD routinely swept occurrences under the rug to avoid a "skeptical national security community." NASA now intends to yank the rug out from under the community by challenging them to recognize that, while these objects remain unexplained, they are worthy of serious scientific investigation.

Simply put, NASA has a lot riding on the coming year. And, while the hunt for extraterrestrial explanations currently feels like a zero-sum game, only time will tell if it was worthwhile to pursue. "You don't want a canned response," Shostak warns. "You want them to weigh the evidence and make a decision."

UFO research is stigmatized. NASA wants to change that. UFO research is stigmatized. NASA wants to change that. Reviewed by AR Ka on June 18, 2022 Rating: 5
Powered by Blogger.