UFOs under the Astronomer’s Lens
The most famous of Astronomers, Dr. Carl Sagan had this to say about UFO’s – “I’m delighted to tell about contemporary scientific thinking along these lines, but let me begin by saying that I do not think the evidence is at all persuasive, that UFO’s are of intelligent extraterrestrial origin, nor do I think the evidence is convincing that no UFO’s are of intelligent extraterrestrial origin.”
However, most astronomers have treated the subject of UFOs with skepticism and among many one such astronomer was Alan Hale (the astronomer who co-discovered Comet Hale-Bopp). He claimed that he has thus far not seen anything significantly that can be described as a UFO as compared to many other objects in the skies above earth.
And there rest the case with mainstream astronomers who mostly look the other way when it comes to the subject of UFOs. However, amateur astronomers are not bound by the strictures of University lecture circuits and have taken their scopes much higher and noted some amazing things.
As an example in repose to Alan Hale who co-discovered the comet Hale-Bopp, an amateur astronomer by the name of Chuck Shramek, claimed to have discovered a “Saturn-like object” companion to same comet. UFO researchers were quick to grab this discovery as proof while professional astronomers quickly debunked the claim.
And this put to rest to the claim that astronomers are trained observers and hence their observation credible. And this is not the case with amateur astronomers alone but also quite a few professional astronomers who have discovered anomalies that turned out to be false. One such discovery was the canals on Mars by Lowell which were misinterpretations of natural geometry.
Another example of professional astronomers discovering unsupported anomalies was Cassini’s discovery of a moon orbiting the planet Venus.
And yet, we have some note worthy UFO observations by astronomers that need to be explored.
In the late 1660s, astronomers such as the Italian, Geminiano Montanar and the famous, Edmund Halley both claimed to have seen UFOs.
Geminiano went on to describe in detail the object he saw as a “vast body apparently bigger than the moon that flew across Italy with a hissing noise and great speed of 160 miles a minute”.
In the late 1770s, two Swiss astronomers saw an object in front of the sun as also similar observation made by Astronomer Hoffman.
The astronomer who catalogue Nebula, Charles Messier claimed to have seen disc shaped dark spots in the skies in 1777.
Scores of similar round, anomalous objects were seek by scores of astronomers right from the 1600’s to the 1800’s and early 1900s.
However, most of these sightings were not classified as UFOs or that they could be termed as misinterpretations.
The modern age sightings
The most remarkable sighting reported by an astronomer was on the June 24th, 1947, when astronomer Fred Johnson saw the same objects as the one observed by Kenneth Arnold in the skies of Oregon.
In the following months in the same year, quite a few UFO sightings were reported by other astronomers, the most prominent being the reporting by astronomer Dr.Lincoln La Paz and his family near Port Sumner, New Mexico.
The object was 235 feet long and 100 feet thick and moving slowly about 120 to 180 miles per hour.
On Christmas Eve in 1949, Mr.R.Henderson an ex-member of the astronomical society of Australia vividly described a UFO sighting which he described as a bright orange light moving at a terrific speed across Melbourne city.
In March of 1950 astronomers in Berlin, then East Germany recorded a very bright object as bright as the North Star zigzagging across the sky an occasionally pausing.
The 1950s also got a bit controversial as it brought forth the sightings by Mr.George Adamski who considered himself as an amateur astronomer. He took pictures of many luminous objects near the moon.
On August 5th, 1952, James Bartlett an experienced amateur astronomer clearly saw what can be best described as two more discs with dome-like protrusions in the center.
Meanwhile George Adamski continued to make his observations of various kinds of UFOs that created quite a buzz.
However, a more noteworthy observation came from no less than Dr.Donald H.Menzel, Director of Harvard University Observatory who noticed mysterious star like objects appear and disappear in the skies and was of the firm opinion that these were not from the earth.
One of the interesting events that happened in 1961 was the abduction of Betty and Barney Hill who together drew a specific “Star Map” that they allegedly saw during their abduction in an “Alien Spacecraft”.
Astronomer Colin Johnston analyzed this event and the “Star Map” and came to the conclusion that the plotting of stars by Betty Hill is “no way at all proof of alien contact” as there were clear astronomical inconsistencies in the drawings.
At the same time, prominent astronomers have commented a great deal on extra terrestrial life and one such astronomer is Lord Martin Rees, president of the Royal Society and astronomer to the Queen who noted that ‘Aliens may be staring us in the face’.
However, the rush to discover life bearing planets around distant stars has been reaching feverish proportions by the discovery of scores of exo-planets by the Kepler telescope that lie in the habitable zone of their parent stars.
Though federal grant chasing professional astronomers are ignoring the evidence on earth available in the form of UFOs and Alien abductions, they are not averse to finding extra-terrestrial life be it on one of Jupiter or Saturn’s moons or on a distant star.
One such star system is Epsilon Eridan that is a mere 10 light-years away from the sun, in the constellation Eradinu. According to astronomers from NASA, it is the closest to our own solar system. However, little more these astronomers can offer as even approaching the nearest star is beyond the reach of our space technology for hundreds of years.
So, the question is why Astronomers are so averse to researching the thousands if not millions of UFO encounters here on earth!
The basic reasoning is that most astronomers are able to clearly justify the odd and strange light in the sky to a known phenomenon as compared to the normal person. And as they spend thousands of hours peering through the scopes of their telescopes, they would most certainly have noted something anomalous and to suggest that every astronomer in the world is out there to hide the case for UFO or discovery of alien spacecrafts is preposterous.
The other reason why astronomers would not consider the case for alien or UFOs being spacecrafts from a distant star is the huge physical and time distance that makes it simply incredulous to make it practical to engage in space travel using mechanical crafts.
However, the fact remains that astronomers and scientists are more averse to investigating UFOs and anomalous objects as there is no money for this kind of research.
SETI for example has been spending decades searching for signals from Aliens but has not made any discovery yet or at least not revealed any. Neither has astronomers from other space faring nations across the planet had to offer anything that can be peer reviewed.
Thus the incentive to seriously study UFOs just does not exist. More so, in modern times.
Astronauts not so shy
However, astronauts have not been so shy in sharing their experiences and one such astronaut, gave an eerie warning before going into coma.
French Alien DNA researcher and astronaut, Dr. Haigneré’s who was the first French and European women to go into space; on December 23, 2008 was taken to the hospital post a suicide attempt but on regaining consciousness briefly screamed , “Earth must be warned!” before lapsing into a coma.
On recovery she decided to take this outburst as a result of “burnout” and not something to take seriously.
Dr. Edger Mitchell, the astronaut also believed there is a case for studying UFOs and founded institutions to scientifically study the phenomenon.
However, these scientists and astronomers or astronauts have been mostly on the fringe with most of the mainstream astronomers simply ignoring the phenomenon.
Concluding, let us look at one typical case of an amateur astronomer UFO sighting that goes against the view held by mainstream astronomers.
On the December 24th, 1997, Alex Carrara an astronomer from Geneva, Switzerland was out on vacation with his family in India in a remote place called Kimsar, Rajasthan state.
He and his family and some local residents watched a UFO performed aerobatic maneuvers high above the town.
There was no sound as the multiple bright yellow or orange lights surrounded by a yellow-orange aura followed three different courses.
Alex noted that it is impossible for him to mistake a star and pass on it as a UFO as he has been observing the skies for many years and neither can it be a distant electric light because, “there are no lights in Kimsar – there is no electricity.”
STATEMENT OF DR. CARL SAGAN, DEPARTMENT OF ASTRONOMY, CORNELL UNIVERSITY, ITHACA, N.Y.
Betty and Barney Hill Star Map
Astronomers rebut UFOs
Earth must be warned
A list of UFO sightings by Astronomers