Wil je een videoclip bekijken en stoort het X-files-deuntje jou daarbij. Schakel het deuntje gewoon uit door in deze kolon, helemaal beneden op de 2 witte balkjes in het blauwe cirkeltje te klikken, tot een pijltje verschijnt. Veel kijk- en luisterplezier en bedankt voor jouw bezoek.
The purpose of this blog is the creation of an open, international, independent and free forum, where every UFO-researcher can publish the results of his/her research. The languagues, used for this blog, are Dutch, English and French.You can find the articles of a collegue by selecting his category. Each author stays resposable for the continue of his articles. As blogmaster I have the right to refuse an addition or an article, when it attacks other collegues or UFO-groupes.
Deze blog is opgedragen aan mijn overleden echtgenote Lucienne.
In 2012 verloor ze haar moedige strijd tegen kanker!
In 2011 startte ik deze blog, omdat ik niet mocht stoppen met mijn UFO-onderzoek.
UFO'S - MET HET LAATSTE NIEUWS OVER UFO'S BOVEN BELGIË EN IN ANDERE LANDEN...
UFO's in België en de rest van de wereld In België heb je vooral BUFON of het Belgisch UFO-Netwerk, dat zich met UFO's bezighoudt. BEZOEK DUS ZEKER VOOR ALLE OBJECTIEVE INFORMATIE ww.ufo.be.
Verder heb je ook het Belgisch-Ufo-meldpunt en Caelestia, die prachtig, doch ZEER kritisch werk leveren, ja soms zelfs héél sceptisch...
Voor Nederland kan je de mooie site www.ufowijzer.nl bezoeken van Paul Harmans. Een mooie site met veel informatie en artikels.
MUFON of het Mutual UFO Network Inc is een Amerikaanse UFO-vereniging met afdelingen in alle USA-staten en diverse landen.
MUFON's mission is the analytical and scientific investigation of the UFO- Phenomenon for the benefit of humanity...
Je kan ook hun site bekijken onder www.mufon.com.
Ze geven een maandelijks tijdschrift uit, namelijk The MUFON UFO-Journal.
Since 02/01/2013 is Pieter not only president (=voorzitter) of BUFON, but also National Director MUFON / Flanders and the Netherlands. We work together with the French MUFON Reseau MUFON/EUROP.
Indian Scientists Have Detected a Crack in Earth’s Magnetic Shield
Indian Scientists Have Detected a Crack in Earth’s Magnetic Shield
A team of scientists from Tata Institute of Fundamental Research’s Cosmic Ray Laboratory in India detected a crack in Earth’s magnetic shield which allowed galactic cosmic rays to leak into the Earth’s atmosphere and caused huge geomagnetic storms.
The world’s largest and most sensitive cosmic ray monitor, GRAPES-3 muon telescope, located in Ooty (India), has recorded a burst of galactic cosmic rays. As per scientists, this burst of galactic cosmic rays indicates a crack in the Earth’s magnetic shield.
This telescope has recorded a burst of about 20 GeV, on 22 June 2015. This bombardment lasted for 2 hours and emitted immensely high-energy radiation. This burst took place when a giant cloud of plasma ejected from a solar corona, and traveled through space at about 2.5 million kilometers per hour and struck Earth.
This all resulted in triggering of severe geomagnetic storms that generated aurora borealis, and radio signal blackouts in many high-latitude countries in North and South America
From that very day, researchers at Tata Institute of Fundamental Research in India have performed various simulations based on the data they received from GRAPES-3, by using the 1280-core computing farm, developed by the GRAPES-3 team.
Their results indicate that the magnetosphere (the area containing the planet’s magnetic field) had been temporarily cracked. The team explained that this high-speed strike was relentless; it resulted in severe compression of the magnetosphere, forcing it to shrink from 11 to 4 times the radius of Earth.
We are all interested to know more and more about the universe, and especially aliens. Many scientists believe there are many possible abodes for life throughout the cosmos, and considering the age of the universe (about 13.8 billion years) there has been plenty of time for life forms to evolve complexity and intelligence.
World-renowned physicist, Professor Stephen Hawking, said, “I am more convinced than ever that we are not alone.” But he is repeatedly warning scientists to stop trying to contact aliens before it’s too late.
According to Hawking, reaching out to advanced civilizations could put humanity in a very risky situation. But the fact is that we’ve already been signaling our location in the universe for years.
Hawking went on to say, “The Breakthrough Listen Project will scan the nearest million stars for signs of life, but I know just the place to start looking. One day we might receive a signal from a planet like Gliese 832c, but we should be wary of answering back.”
Hawking fears that alien civilizations are capable enough of picking up one of the many signals we are sending into outer space and understand where they’re coming from. If this alien civilization has the potential of billions of years of advancement, then we can become an easy target to overthrow or invade.
MIT and NASA researchers have developed a morphing airplane wing which could greatly simplify the manufacturing process and will make planes more fuel efficient.
The design is similar to that of Wright brothers’ Flyer 1, which they did more than a century ago. The entire wing bends and twists, but in place of wires and pulleys, this wing uses a high-strength foil on an aluminum frame.
The wing’s aerodynamics and its agility have been improved. Using an “array of tiny, lightweight structural pieces” dubbed “digital materials,” the scientists made the wings that can be assembled into a virtually infinite variety of shapes, just like LEGO blocks. The wings are able to twist with the help of activating two small motors that apply a twisting pressure to each wingtip.
Image courtesy Kenneth Cheung/NASA
As per MIT, “Wind-tunnel tests of this structure showed that it at least matches the aerodynamic properties of a conventional wing, at about one-tenth the weight.”
The wings are bendable and are made of lightweight carbon fiber reinforced plastic and are assembled by a team small robots. Miniature robots crawl along or inside the wing structure as it takes shape.
Gonzalo Rey, chief technology officer for Moog Inc., said, “Ultralight, tunable, aeroelastic structures and flight controls open up whole new frontiers for flight. The broader potential in this concept extends directly to skyscrapers, bridges, and space structures, providing not only improved performance and survivability but also a more sustainable approach by achieving the same strength while using, and reusing, substantially less raw material.”
- Gemiddelde waardering: 0/5 - (0 Stemmen) Categorie:SF-snufjes ( E, F en NL )
Les premières images de la sonde TGO de la mission ExoMars
Les premières images de la sonde TGO de la mission ExoMars
En orbite autour de la planète Mars depuis le mois d'octobre, la sonde TGO livre ses premières images de la planète rouge.
Photo d’un cratère de 1.4 km sur le rempart d’un cratère bien plus grand. Résolution de 7,2 mètres par pixel.
ExoMars. La mission ExoMars 2016 de l'Agence spatiale Européenne (ESA) consistait en l'envoi d'une sonde autour de Mars et d'un atterrisseur sur la planète rouge. Si ce dernier a connu un funeste destin en s'écrasant à la surface plutôt que d'y atterrir en douceur, la sonde ExoMars-Trace Gas Orbiter (TGO) s'est, elle, correctement positionnée en orbite le 19 octobre 2016. Depuis elle a commencé à initialiser et tester ses instruments scientifiques. En cette fin novembre, l'ESA publie les premières images prises par la caméra CaSSIS (Colour and stereo surface imaging system, système d’imagerie de surface couleur et stéréo) lors du passage de la sonde à proximité du canyon Valles Marineris et des grands volcans martiens.
Premières images d'ExoMars. Crédit : ESA/Roscosmos/ExoMars/CaSSIS/UniBE
Le principal objectif de TGO est de faire un inventaire détaillé des gaz rares qui représentent moins de 1% du volume de l'atmosphère martienne dont le méthane, la vapeur d'eau, le dioxyde d'azote et l'acétylène. Outre la caméra, les deux instruments chargés de cet inventaire ont également été testés avec succès la semaine dernière. Enfin, le FREND (un détecteur de neutrons) qui permettra de jauger la composition de la surface a aussi subi une série de contrôles qui se sont avérés tout aussi satisfaisants. Il faudra cependant plusieurs mois avant que ces instruments produisent des données scientifiquement exploitables. Les premières photos ont été prises à environ 98.000 kilomètres d'altitude mais des clichés bien plus détaillés sont attendus car la sonde va progressivement se rapprocher de Mars pour se positionner, vers la fin de l'année prochaine, à une orbite définitive de 400 kilomètres d'altitude. CaSSIS permet des prises de vue couleur en stéréo et utilise les deux images obtenues en même temps pour reconstruire la topographie d'un lieu. Ce premier lot d'images va permettre d'améliorer la qualité des prochaines prises de vue.
Image et reconstruction 3D d’un versant du canyon de Noctis Labyrinthus. La topographie a pu être calculée avec une précision d’environ 20 mètres. Crédit : ESA/Roscosmos/CaSSIS.
The Russian Space Agency reported that it has lost its Progress cargo spaceship following the disruption of the data signal. The cargo vehicle was to deliver 2.6 tons of supplies to the International Space Station (ISS).
The Progress M-04 cargo spacecraft was lost at a height of 190km (more than 623,000ft) over a remote mountainous area of the Russian Republic of Tuva, Roscosmos said in a statement on its website.
Credit top right image: Amicha Stein.
Local people reported seeing a flash of light and hearing a loud boom while Amicha Stein posted an image on Twitter (see top right image) showing an explosion in the skies over Tuva, Russia around the time the ProgressMS04 vanished.
The Russian space agency would not immediately describe the malfunction, saying a state commission is carrying out an investigation into this event, reports RT.
After a cargo spacecraft from NASA’s supplier SpaceX exploded on the launch pad at Cape Canaveral last September, the Progress M-04 cargo spacecraft is the second craft in a short period of time that explodes without knowing what caused the incident.
Coincidence or not but at about the same time the cargo spacecraft vanished, a triangle UFO has been spotted near the International Space Station! See video below.
Chinese military units accidentally stumbled upon a crashed alien spacecraft in this isolated desert region. A retrieval team was summoned and the site properly cordoned off. Everything possible was done to avoid any information leaked to civilians and to other Chinese military sections.
The craft was slightly damaged and abandoned by its crew. It was about 10 meters long and about 2.5-3 meters in diameter. Its shape was cylindrical, with a very durable surface. Sophisticated equipment apparently used by alien entities was found inside the cabin, with chairs for 2 or 3 entities.
The cylinder was loaded upon a platform on a flatbed truck or railroad carriage and moved to a must secured underground Government research installation in a military range southwest of Beijing under the Taihang-Shan Mountains. The alien spacecraft was subjected to extensive study and research. Another UFO, which crashed in 1973, was also stored at the site.
NOTE:The Taihang Shan Mountains contain a network of underground tunnels for Chinese strategic missiles. Speculation is that part of that underground network is used to hide rumored crashed UFOs as well as remains of alien beings.
In January, 2005 in the area that borders Nepal, tourists returning from Nepal were talking about a possible UFO crash in that country. The talk was also rampant in Katmandu, capital of Nepal and other Nepali cities. The crash site is in the deep Himalayan border of Nepal and China. According to sources, the crash site may have been close to Mount Everest and is totally inaccessible from either side.
The rumor is that the Chinese military was actively looking for the crashed craft. It is also rumored that the ‘human-like’ extraterrestrials were not allowing anyone to get close to the site. Unusual activities and some tremors were felt all over the Himalayan regions from both the Indian and Nepalese side. Also UFO activity increased sharply in that area, possibly related to the supposed crash. It is possible that the crash was nothing more but a Chinese spacecraft. China had some secret military projects in that area.
Scientists believe they finally FOUND evidence of ANCIENT life on MARS
Scientists believe they finally FOUND evidence of ANCIENT life on MARS
In other words, scientists have come across mysterious structures on the surface of the red planet which were most likely formed by ancient lifeforms inhabiting Mars.
This is probably the news we’ve been all waiting for. Scientists think they’ve finally come across the ultimate evidence that can prove life existed on Mars in ancient times. Luckily, we could even send a rover to explore the site.
Experts from the Arizona State University announced not long ago, that they have discovered potential BIOSIGNATURES on Earth that have ‘fascinating similar features’ to some of the 2007 Spirit rover discoveries on the surface of Mars.
The unusual deposits which have caused the scientific community to reconsider everything we thought about Mars, are made of a substance that is called silica and eerily resembles those found around hot springs on our planet.
The discovery was made on Home Plate, a region located in the 3 to 4 billion-year-old Gusev Crater.
While it is definitely too early to jump to any conclusions, the discovery itself is beyond fascinating and may well prove that in the distant past, Mars was a planet that supported life.
Why is this important? Mostly because these ‘natural wonders’ often preserve tell-tale signs of life known as ‘biosignatures’.
Silica deposits in Gusev Crater (left) compared to those in El Tatio, Chile (right).
In the recently published paper, Steven W. Ruff and Jack D. Farmer of Arizona State University wrote: “Evidence for silica sinter deposits on Mars is important given the known capacity of such rocks to capture and preserve microbes, making them ideal targets in the search for ancient life on Mars.
“Hydrothermal spring deposits of silica (sinter) have long been targets in the search for fossil life on Mars and early Earth because of their ability to capture and preserve biosignatures.”
NASA’s Spirit rover touched down on the surface of Mars in 2004, a couple of weeks before Opportunity made its way to another part of Mars.
NASA is currently planning on sending a NEW rover to the surface of Mars in 2020. In order to determine where the rover should touch down, NASA has held numerous ‘workshops’ where scientists are presenting their most interesting cases for specific landing sites.
You can check out the newly published study by clicking here.
Featured image: The Spirit rover (circled) exploring Home Plate. NASA/JPL-CalTech/University of Arizona
BREAKTHROUGH: EXTRAORDINARY REPORT FROM THE MAN ASSIGNED TO BREAK OPEN ROSWELL'S UFO!
BREAKTHROUGH: EXTRAORDINARY REPORT FROM THE MAN ASSIGNED TO BREAK OPEN ROSWELL'S UFO!
The ever growing epic conspiracy about the Roswell 1947 UFO crash is one of the most notorious topics among UFO/Alien enthusiasts.
The only people that witnessed the crashed UFO back in the day know about the truth, with a lot of people outside the picture left in wonder and coming up with all these insane theories.
But there have been some reports from people who were present during the events, filling the gaps with some extraordinary claims.
There's the case of a woman, who was a 10 year old child at the time (1957), who had found and handled a piece of debris from the Rosewell UFO. The alloy was of a strange metal that couldn't be burnt, cut, and would revoer it's original shape after being crumpled.
A new fantastic report from an engineer who had spoken to a man, who was a Welder by trade, that was assigned by the military to cut open the "dome" on the top of the flying saucer. What he saw is unbelievable!
UFO-Hunters believe they have come across yet another anomaly on the surface of the red planet. In fact, not only do they believe they’ve found n anomaly on Mars but what appears to be a crashed UFO. This ‘discovery’ is just one of the many that have been made on the surface of Mars thanks to the numerous images taken by NASA’s rovers and satellites on Mars.
A video recently uploaded to youtube points out a mysterious anomaly on the Martian surface that could in fact be a crashed alien spaceship. The video describes the formation which was spotted at the Medusa Fossa formation, located in close proximity to the boundary between the Tharsis and Elysium centers of volcanic activity on Mars.
The ‘bizarre’ anomaly was found by Youtube UFO hunter ‘UFOvni2012’ who intricately pointed out the intricate shape of the object, arguing that the surrounding landscape and curious formation may give away its true origin, even though skeptics argue it’s just another rock on Mars.
UFO hunters argue that this –among many other discoveries—are the ultimate proof that in the distant past, and extremely advanced alien civilization inhabited Mars, when the red planet was much like Earth, probably millions of years ago.
The YouTube video describes the peculiar finding as a ‘large geological unit of uncertain origin.’
The video further details as to why this many be in fact a crashed alien ship.
‘If we take a look at the crash site we see that the UFO, which is approximately 190 meters wide, impacted the surface at a low angle ending up half buried in the Martian soil’ the video says.
‘The long and turned landing tracks left behind from the craft show that the ship crash landed as gently as it could,’ UFO-hunter Scott Waring told Metro.
‘Looks like a base that opens the door and let light escape unto the sand dunes of Mars,’ one commenter said.
‘Or it can just be a damn meteor that crashed,’ said another.
However, not all UFO researchers share similar views on the matter.
Nigel Watson, author of the UFO Investigation Manual remains skeptical:
‘I think it is more likely to be a natural geological formation. Though there is added mystery to the allegation that the images have been removed from websites to keep this image secret.’
‘When we do eventually get there, say in 2033 as the National Geographic Channel’s Mars TV series suggests, it’ll be fascinating to get a close-up view of these so-called alien artifacts, spacecraft, and bases to find out the truth of the matter first hand.’
While there are certainly numerous mysterious ‘objects’ on Mars that according to many are tell-tale signs of past civilizations on Mars, many of the discoveries can be explained as Pareidolia and nothing else.
Check out the video and let us know what you think:
Check out the original image of the alleged UFO on NASA’s website by clicking here.
2000 jaar oude tabletten bevatten eerste verwijzing naar Jezus en werpen heel ander licht op hem.
2000 jaar oude tabletten bevatten eerste verwijzing naar Jezus en werpen heel ander licht op hem.
Een boek met loden pagina’s dat in 2008 in Jordanië werd gevonden, bevat volgens wetenschappers mogelijk de eerste schriftelijke vermelding van Jezus. Dat schrijft de Daily Mail.
In het boek wordt Jezus genoemd als iemand die de religie uit de tijd van koning David in ere wilde herstellen, niet als iemand die een nieuwe godsdienst wilde beginnen.
Koning David vereerde in de Tempel van Salomo een god die zowel mannelijk als vrouwelijk was. Die tempel wilde Jezus naar verluidt in ere herstellen.
Het boek zou acht jaar geleden zijn gevonden door een Bedoeïen, een Arabische woestijnbewoner, in een gebied waar de vroege christenen in 70 na Christus naartoe vluchtten na de val van Jeruzalem.
In 2011 werd de vondst wereldkundig gemaakt. Sindsdien wordt er druk gediscussieerd over de authenticiteit van het boek.
Uit nieuw onderzoek van de Universiteit van Surrey in Engeland blijkt dat het boek tussen de 1800 en 2000 jaar oud is.
Heel ander licht
Onderzoekers analyseerden onder meer het lood en de teksten. Het materiaal bleek gelijkenissen te vertonen met een stuk Romeins lood dat in Dorset is opgegraven.
Het boek werpt een heel ander licht op het ontstaan van het christendom en Jezus. Het suggereert namelijk dat Jezus deel uitmaakte van een Hebreeuwse sekte.
Het lijkt erop dat het christendom is gebaseerd op wat Jezus in de Tempel van Salomo deed: een nieuw verbond afsluiten met God. Hij wilde eigenlijk een oude religie nieuw leven inblazen, zo klinkt het.
Its been widely reported that the Chinese are testing the new Emdrive propulsion on the Chinese space station currently in orbit around Earth. What this means is that the space station could be built look like a space station, but could also be used to fly to Mars in 10 weeks! Thats right, the Chinese may be about to colonize Mars and claim it as their own in the not so distant future. The Emdrive is already installed on the space station and has been for awhile...but why? To keep it in orbit perhaps, but what about the long term...what about the future of the space station changing into a space station transport to Mars and back? Well, the more space transportation out there the better, because there is more opportunity for aliens to bump into humans and become friends...where on Earth, aliens have to respect humanity and their rules. In space...its humanity that needs to respect the aliens rules of conduct, and no government on Earth can change that. It looks like China may be the first country to get humans transported to mars...publicly. I'm sure NASA has already done it with several of their secret projects...but its kept the public in the dark far too long. Scott C. Waring
While looking over a mexican volcano cam, I found one photo that had a UFO in it. The UFO was near the side of the mountain and was not seen in any other photos before and after that. This make me think that it entered the top of the volcano to enter an alien base 4km below the volcano. On top of the UFO you see a small dome, which is also on the bottom of the UFO. This is a classic UFO design. Scott C. Waring
Many hunters believe some UFOs might be using the energy from the Sun. In the video uploaded to YouTube, a massive UFO is supposed to be feeding off sun energy.
The uploader of the video, who claimed to be a former unbeliever of the plasma energy theory, the massive UFO that appears to be different color and shape to the rest of the connected lines has got him thinking.
Experts believe that cosmic rays can penetrate deep in the Earth and living things deep in the bowels of Earth where water is present could be dependent on cosmic rays to survive. Such situation may also take place on Mars and Europa.
Some UFO chasers believe the UFO may have been using the energy from the sun to fuel or recharge itself. They describe the UFO as a glowing white near a yellow Sun’s plasma, which makes them believe that the craft is made from a different material than the surface of the Sun.
In another NASA image taken by the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO), giant UFOs can be seen apparently rotating around the sun.
Some UFO researchers believe there are UFOs that almost as big as the Earth.
UFO investigators are examining two pictures that show a strange beam of light from the sky and an unidentified flying object. The photos were taken simultaneously over the Hollywood Hills in California.
The unnamed photographer said he did not see anything bizarre at the time of snapping the two pictures, but he spotted anomalies when reviewing the images later.
In a report to MUFON, the witness said that he took some photos and noticed something strange on them. The pictures were taken a day before the witness sent them to the organization dedicated to the investigation of alien and UFO phenomena.
The first image shows a portal-like beam of blue light, which appears to distort the trees as it passes above them. A small dark UFO can be seen to the right of the beam.
The second picture apparently shows a slightly different part of the hills and seemingly in a closer zoom. It shows a translucent jelly-like UFO that somewhat has three dots inside it.
Some UFO believers suggest that it could be a living entity that travels through portals without needing spacecraft. However, there’s no scientific explanation to support this conspiracy theory.
Meanwhile, skeptics would say that strange light anomaly on pictures often due to the result of sunlight refracting inside a camera lens pointed towards the sun.
According to legend, the astronomer J. Allen Hynek was a skeptic before becoming an outspoken UFOlogist, but is the legend true? This article takes a look at Hynek’s unusual life and career.
It was a “road to Damascus” experience for the Mad Men era. In 1966, the respected astronomer J. Allen Hynek had gone—seemingly overnight—from a determined debunker to an ardent apostle of the UFO gospel. A longtime consultant to Project Blue Book noted for his skeptical stance toward UFOs, Hynek suddenly began telling anyone who would listen that the UFO phenomenon merited serious scientific scrutiny. The great director Stanley Kubrick was among the many who listened. In a 1968 Playboyinterview promoting his science-fiction epic 2001: A Space Odyssey, Kubrick spoke approvingly of what he termed Hynek’s “belated but exemplary conversion” (Phillips 2001, 58).
In fact, the professor’s apparent transformation from skeptic to UFO proponent was not quite the conversion event that it appeared on the surface. Since his teens Hynek had been an enthusiastic though closeted student of the occult. The French-born Jacques Vallee, a computer scientist and UFO author, was one of the few persons who knew Hynek’s secret. Hynek once told Vallee that he had become an astronomer in order to discover “the very limitations of science, the places where it broke down, the phenomena it didn’t explain” (Vallee 1996, 232). Nonetheless, the scientist’s public U-turn gave a big boost to the UFO movement, lending it a measure of credibility, and made Hynek into a celebrity as the nation’s “foremost expert on flying saucers” (O’Toole 1966). For two decades people could point to Hynek and say, “He’s a trained scientist, an astronomer no less: if even he believes in this UFO stuff then there must be something to it.”
Who was Josef Allen Hynek? He was born on Chicago’s West Side on May 1, 1910, only a little over a week after Halley’s Comet had swung around the sun. Hynek’s Czech-born father made cigars for a living while his mother, Bertha, taught at a local grammar school. Josef credited his mother for his early interest in astronomy.
“When I was seven, I had scarlet fever and was quarantined with my mother in our apartment at 15th and Ayers,” Hynek explained. “There was nothing to do except read, and since I was so young, my mother read to me. Pretty soon we ran out of children’s books and she started reading textbooks. Among them was a high school astronomy book. I guess it interested me the most” (Berland 1962).
Maybe astronomy textbooks didn’t give him the answers he wanted, and so, as a bookish teenager, Hynek began to study what he called “esoteric subjects.” After reading widely in the occult, he developed a particular fondness for the writings of the Rosicrucian secret societies, with their tantalizing promises of hidden ancient knowledge, and those of the so-called hermetic philosophers, especially Rudolf Steiner.1The high schooler spent over $100—roughly $1,300 in today’s dollars—to purchase the Canadian mystic Manly Hall’s massive, richly illustrated tome An Encyclopedic Outline of Masonic, Hermetic, Qabbalistic and Rosicrucian Symbolical Philosophy: Being an Interpretation of the Secret Teachings Concealed within the Rituals, Allegories and Mysteries of All Ages, better known simply as The Secret Teachings of All Ages. “All my student friends thought I was crazy: why didn’t I buy a motorcycle instead, as they all did,” Hynek later told Jacques Vallee (Vallee 2010, 64–65).
Hoping to discover “the very limitations of science,” Hynek decided on a career as an astronomer. After receiving his bachelor’s degree from the University of Chicago in 1931, Hynek went on to pursue a doctorate in astronomy. He worked on his doctoral thesis—“A Quantitative Study of Certain Phases of F-Type Spectra”—at the Yerkes Observatory, a Romanesque temple of astronomy on the serene shores of Lake Geneva in Wisconsin.
“The whole thing had a sort of mystical quality,” Hynek would later revealingly refer to his monastic existence at Yerkes. “One shouldn’t say that in connection with science, I guess, but I was so utterly absorbed in the life of the observatory that I had hardly heard of Hitler” (Ridpath 1973, 423).
Shortly after receiving his PhD in 1935, Hynek obtained a position as an instructor at Ohio State University and four years later became a professor there. He was still teaching at Ohio State in 1948 when a trio of Air Force officials approached him: They were looking for a scientist to help them with a puzzling problem that had recently cropped up (Ridpath 1973, 422–24).
On June 24, 1947, a salesman by the name of Kenneth Arnold reported seeing a formation of shiny objects pass in front of Mount Rainier while he was flying his private plane. In the weeks following Arnold’s alleged sighting, hundreds of persons claimed to observe similar “flying saucers.” Fearful that that these so-called “saucers” might be Soviet aircraft, U.S. Air Force officials formed Project Sign early in 1948 to investigate the phenomenon. Hynek was recruited to be the project’s astronomical consultant.
In his role as Project Sign’s scientific advisor, Hynek made periodic trips from Columbus to Wright Patterson Air Force Base (where Project Sign and its successors, Projects Grudge and Blue Book, were based) to examine the UFO case files. He proved to be a shrewd and relentless debunker, a Sherlock Holmes of sky phenomena. “I’d go through them and say, ‘Well, this is obviously a meteor,’ or ‘This is not a meteor, but I’ll bet you it’s a balloon,’” he recalled in 1985. “I was a thorough skeptic, and I’m afraid I helped to engender the idea that it must be nonsense, therefore it is nonsense” (Weintraub 1985, 74).
One of Hynek’s earliest efforts at debunking—and one of his most famous—concerned the 1948 case of Captain Thomas Mantell, an Air Force pilot who, while investigating a UFO, died when his P-51 Mustang crashed. In his report of the incident Hynek suggested that the UFO may have been Venus, even though, as he later admitted, the planet would have been too faint to be seen in the bright daylight sky (Ruppelt 1956, 41–47). The astronomer had another—probably correct—theory on that case: the UFO Mantell observed and pursued too high was a Skyhook balloon (Vallee 1987, 72).
Hynek at first figured flying saucer sightings were merely “a post-war craze that would disappear as quickly as the hula-hoop” (Hall and Connors 2000, 240). But the UFO reports kept on coming as Project Sign turned into Project Grudge in 1949 and then into Project Blue Book in 1952. During the latter year a wave of UFO sightings prompted Hynek to begin reconsidering his views on the subject. He openly speculated that UFOs might be a new kind of natural phenomenon he dubbed “nocturnal meandering lights” (Swords and Powell 2012, 191). The astronomer’s change of mind was so apparent that Captain Edward Ruppelt, the first director of Project Blue Book, judged Hynek to be “very much pro-UFO” (Hall and Connors 2000, 205, 212).
Hynek later attributed this shift in his thinking to two things:
One was the completely negative and unyielding attitude of the Air Force. . . . Everything had to have an explanation. I began to resent that, even though I basically felt the same way, because I still thought they weren’t going about it in the right way. Secondly the caliber of the witnesses began to trouble me. Quite a few instances were reported by military pilots, for example, and I knew them to be fairly well trained, so this is when I first began to think that, well, maybe there was something to all this. (Stacy 1985)
As early as 1960, Hynek had begun to argue behind the scenes that UFOs deserved serious scientific scrutiny. “I need only remind you,” he wrote to an Air Force official that year, “that less than two centuries ago the entire province of meteorites was kept out of legitimate astronomy because stories of ‘stones that fell from the sky’ were regarded as old wives tales. Had these accounts been given careful attention by the scientists of that day, the productive branch of astronomy which we now know as meteoritics would have been born well over a century earlier than it was” (Hynek 1960). Hynek would often cite this incident from the history of astronomy to justify himself when he later became an outspoken UFO proponent.
Hynek’s true views on UFOs were still unknown to the public when the astronomer, now teaching at Northwestern University, first met Jacques Vallee in the fall of 1963. Taking a job as a computer programmer at Northwestern, Vallee became a close friend of Hynek and soon they formed a UFO discussion group: The astronomer would eventually nickname this group “the Invisible College” (Vallee 1996, 270)—a term first used by the Rosicrucians in the early 1600s. Vallee began prodding Hynek to break with the Air Force and publicly admit that the UFO phenomenon was real and worthy of serious scientific investigation. Project Blue Book’s longtime scientific consultant—still known as a staunch UFO debunker—stubbornly resisted this advice (Vallee 1996, 80–94).
Hynek had a lot to lose. He enjoyed a respectable reputation in the astronomical world: while he had a sizeable number of journal articles on stellar astronomy to his credit, he was better known for his work behind a desk than for his labors in front of a telescope. He had been a director of the McMillin Observatory in Ohio, a co-director of the Operation Moonwatch satellite tracking program, secretary of the American Astronomical Society, and the guiding force behind the Project Sky Gazer balloon astronomy program (Ridpath 1973, 422–24). He understandably wasn’t eager to risk his name—and his career—in the interest of UFOs. The astronomer was waiting, in Vallee’s words, for “the single big case that no one would be able to deny because the evidence would be overwhelming” (Vallee 1996, 96).
And then, on April 24, 1964, the single big case arrived, or so it seemed. In Socorro, New Mexico, police officer Lonnie Zamora was chasing a speeder in his squad car when he suddenly heard a roar and noticed a flame in the sky. Investigating, Zamora spotted an egg-shaped, “aluminum white” object with legs that extended to the ground, and he noticed two white-cloaked figures nearby. As the officer cautiously approached it, the object began to bellow, and Zamora high-tailed it back toward his car. The UFO then ascended into the sky and soon disappeared from view (Hynek 1972, 144–45).
Badgered by the news media, Major Hector Quintanilla, Project Blue Book’s director, reluctantly dispatched Hynek to Socorro to investigate the alleged sighting. At the landing site Hynek examined charred plants and four impressions that had been left in the ground and persuaded Zamora to reenact the events (Huyghe 2001, 317–18). The astronomer left New Mexico “more puzzled now than I arrived,” he confessed to a reporter, but he was convinced that Zamora had indeed seen something (Chicago Tribune 1964).2
Hynek and Vallee frequently discussed the Socorro case, but the astronomer was still unwilling to publicly come out as pro-UFO (Vallee 1996, 118). Things changed in the spring of 1966. On March 20 of that year, dozens of persons reported viewing glowing objects hovering over a swamp near Ann Arbor, Michigan, and the following night, eighty-seven students at Hillsdale College, also in Michigan, claimed to have seen strange red, white, and blue lights. The Michigan sightings received massive media coverage, and Major Quintanilla once again sent Hynek out into the field. The professor rushed out to Michigan and conducted his investigation in an atmosphere of “near-hysteria,” dogged almost every step of the way by reporters and cameramen. After interviewing thirty-two witnesses and conferring with several University of Michigan professors, Hynek concluded that at least two of the Michigan UFOs may have been manifestations of swamp gas (Hynek 1966a, 20).
On March 26, Hynek announced his findings at a packed press conference in Detroit—supposedly “the largest in the history of the Detroit Press Club” (House of Representatives 1966, 6006). After suggesting swamp gas as a likely explanation for some of the Michigan UFOs, Hynek stressed that he could not prove “in a court of law that this is the full explanation of these sightings” (Los Angeles Times 1966). The media mostly ignored this qualifier and Hynek immediately became a national laughingstock for his swamp gas theory, lampooned in cartoons and lambasted in editorials as a puppet of the Air Force (Huyghe 2001, 9–10).
Hynek’s swamp gas theory also attracted the notice—and the ire—of Gerald Ford, the powerful Republican congressman from Michigan and future president. In response, Ford promptly requested the U.S. House Armed Services Committee to investigate the UFO phenomenon, believing that “the American public deserves a better explanation than that thus far given by the Air Force”—meaning the explanation given by Hynek (House of Representatives 1966, 6047). The wish of the House minority leader was equivalent to a command and so the UFO hearing took place only one week after Ford had made his request.
On April 5, 1966, Hynek made his first public break with the Air Force, boldly using the occasion of his testimony before the Armed Services Committee to do so. Stung by the “swamp gas” criticism, the astronomer apparently wanted to show that he wasn’t the Air Force’s or anyone else’s puppet. In a statement not cleared by Major Quintanilla, the Project Blue Book director, Hynek told the sitting congressmen that there were aspects of the UFO phenomenon “worthy of scientific attention,” and he called for the creation of a panel of physical and social scientists to seriously analyze what he termed the “UFO problem” (House of Representatives 1966, 6007–6008).
“The swamp gas episode boomeranged like hell on me and the Air Force,” Hynek later explained his about-face. “I began to feel guilty about my skeptical attitude. And once you open the gates to the possibility that all these people can’t possibly be mistaken, then you see a lot of other cases in a totally different light” (Huyghe 2001, 33). As we have seen, Hynek’s “skeptical attitude” was in fact a façade for public consumption. A longtime student of the occult, he happened to be very open to outré notions: he, for example, believed that there were planes of existence beyond the physical, and he even endorsed alleged instances of “psychic surgery” and “psychic photography” (Vallee 1996, 240, 306). But it took the media furor over the “swamp gas episode” for an angry and embarrassed Hynek to publicly air his long-held views on UFOs.
It was a risky move for Hynek but not as risky as it would have been a few short years before. Since then his astronomical career had stalled in a big way.3 In 1957, Hynek launched in collaboration with the Air Force a program for balloon-based astronomy—later named Project Star Gazer. The plan was to send telescope-equipped balloons high above the image-distorting lower layers of the atmosphere. Unfortunately, a series of failed test launches prompted the Air Force to scrap Project Star Gazer in 1963. The decision was devastating for Hynek, who seems to have bet his professional career on the success of the project. In a scathing final report to the Air Force the astronomer didn’t hold back. “In any event,” he wrote, “the setting aside of a project which had engaged so many for such a length of time, at a time when success seemed assured, can only be listed in the scientific annals as a criminal act, and one carried out in a callous, cavalier manner without regard for the desires, objectives and ideals of the people involved” (Hynek 1966b). Was Hynek’s emergence into the open as a pro-UFO crusader partly an attempt, whether subconscious or not, to get back at the Air Force for torpedoing Project Star Gazer?
As Hynek had recommended during his congressional testimony, the Air Force soon funded a scientific study of UFOs and the renowned physicist Edward U. Condon, of the University of Colorado, was chosen to direct it. After three contentious years, the Condon Committee concluded in 1969 that “further extensive study of UFOs probably cannot be justified in the expectation that science will be advanced thereby” (Hynek 1972, 192–93). Hynek predictably dismissed the committee’s report, calling it “a waste of time” (Kotulak 1969), but the Air Force went ahead anyway and closed Project Blue Book later that year. The professor was now on his own as a UFO investigator.
Back in 1966, Hynek had chosen the biggest megaphone he could find to announce his new career as a UFO advocate: He sent a bombshell letter to the prestigious and widely read journal Science in which he argued that UFOs merited scientific investigation. The Science editors grudgingly published the letter but only after the astronomer had leaked its contents to the Chicago Sun-Times (Vallee 1996, 222). Hynek subsequently wrote articles on UFOs for such national publications as The Saturday Evening Post, The New Yorker, and even Playboy, and he became a ubiquitous presence on television and radio shows. “Media men hire Allen as they would hire a guitar player,” Jacques Vallee wrote in his journal. “He rushes wherever he sees a spotlight, and if the spotlight moves, he moves with it” (Vallee 1996, 259).
Hynek’s fame came at a great cost: he lost the respect of his peers in the scientific community. “His colleagues’ attitude towards him is changing to the point of contempt, and this pains him,” Vallee noted in 1968. “He is no longer taken seriously among astronomers” (Vallee 1996, 339).
Determined to prove his colleagues wrong, Hynek began working on a book that he said would take a scientific approach to the study of UFOs. Published in 1972, The UFO Experience: A Scientific Inquiry argues for the reality of the UFO phenomenon in a dry, matter-of-fact manner. The book is most noteworthy for its classification of certain UFO reports into Close Encounters of the First Kind (sightings), the Second Kind (sightings with physical effects), and the Third Kind (sightings of UFO occupants) (Hynek 1972, 86).
Unfortunately for Hynek, The UFO Experience did further damage to his academic standing. According to an astronomer friend of Vallee, Hynek’s book “created antagonism among the (Northwestern) Faculty and made him a controversial figure. In spite of a fair review in Science Magazine, many professors have felt that the reputation of the school was tainted” (Vallee 2010, 156). Indeed, speaking for his faculty colleagues in 1982, the dean of Northwestern’s College of Arts and Sciences categorically declared to a University official: “We are not, have not been, and will not be proud of Hynek’s UFO affairs. There are many who think that what he’s up to has nothing to do with research” (Weingartner 1982).
Hynek may have genuinely wanted to restore his scientific standing, but his behavior during the 1970s certainly didn’t help matters. The bespectacled, goateed astronomer was a familiar sight to television viewers of the era, pontificating on the “UFO problem” on programs ranging from The Dick Cavett Show to In Search Of. Late in 1973, he endorsed the alien abduction claims of two Pascagoula, Mississippi, shipyard workers, saying the men had “a very real experience” (Los Angeles Times 1973). He joined a UFO panel formed by the National Enquirer: $50,000 was to be awarded to “the first person to prove to the panel that UFOs are from outer space and are not natural phenomena” (Dick 1972). Near the end of the decade Hynek even made an eight-second cameo appearance in Steven Spielberg’s Close Encounters of the Third Kind (Huyghe 2001, 32). He was also a popular figure on the lucrative college lecture circuit. He later boasted to a friend “that each one of my lectures brings me more than my monthly pay from Northwestern” (Hynek 1978).
Hynek in Close Encounters of the Third Kind.
Hynek’s extracurricular activities did not endear him to the Northwestern University administration. In the fall of 1973, following a wave of alleged sightings, the astronomer formed the Center for UFO Studies to serve as a clearinghouse for UFO reports. He hoped that the Center could be located on the Northwestern campus, but university officials adamantly rejected this idea. School administrators insisted that there be no connection whatsoever between Northwestern and the UFO center; Hynek was not even allowed to use his Northwestern mailing address for any Center-related correspondence. Eventually protesting, the professor fired off a series of angry letters. “Frankly, I am quite embarrassed to have to say that the University has been so conservative as to not see the potential here, both for science and for publicity,” he raged in one letter. “And, of course, I personally resent the implication that the subject is sheer nonsense and that anyone connected with it is a crackpot (speaking bluntly!)” (Hynek 1974).
After he retired from Northwestern in 1978, Hynek devoted much of his time to the Center for UFO Studies. Despite having a good track record as a fundraiser—he had obtained money from private donors for Northwestern’s Lindheimer Astronomical Research Center—Hynek struggled to put his UFO center on a secure financial footing: Wealthy would-be benefactors frequently tantalized him with offers of monetary support only to let him down in the end. Finally in 1984, Hynek packed up his research files and relocated his UFO center to Scottsdale, Arizona, having been lured there by a rich Englishman with promises of money and the use of his “quite luxurious” home (Witt 1984). Once again the astronomer was doomed to disappointment: this particular patron “was only interested in keeping a few scientists in his entourage to promote his personal theories about the (UFO) phenomenon,” Jacques Vallee maintained (Vallee 1996, 423).
Hynek was often evasive when asked to give his own theories on the nature of UFOs. Despite his cameo in 1977’s Close Encounters of the Third Kind, he had by then rejected the notion that UFOs were “nuts and bolts” spacecraft piloted by extraterrestrials (Gardner 1997, 247). His occult studies had pointed him in a very different direction. As early as 1967, he speculated that UFOs might be “observational devices that are materialized into our world by the denizens of another” (Vallee 1996, 306). He later offered a variation on this theory: UFOs as “psychic projections” created by an “extradimensional intelligence in some parallel reality” (Gardner 1997, 253). Speaking to the UFOlogist Jerome Clark, Hynek was more specific. The astronomer allegedly told Clark that he believed “elementals”—nature spirits—were behind the UFO phenomenon (Clark 1998).
It is easy to question the veracity of Clark’s startling claim, but it makes sense when one realizes that Hynek was strongly influenced by Rudolf Steiner, the Austrian mystic. Steiner argued that the hard sciences merely offer humankind “a vast amount of popular information.” By employing sense-free thinking, the enlightened individual, on the other hand, could “pierce the veil” and discover what lay behind the material world revealed by science. In Steiner’s view, elementals—spirits of air, earth, water, and the ether—dwelled in this hidden realm inaccessible to the senses. If Hynek did indeed believe that UFOs were nature spirits, he may have specifically identified them with this last class of elemental—the etheric “beings of the higher elements.” Steiner claimed that “what exists in the sky is not merely the physical sun, but that with the sun’s warmth and light etheric beings stream down to earth” (Steiner 1922). Did Hynek suspect that UFOs were Steiner’s “etheric beings” streaming down to Earth?
For those very few who knew of Hynek’s fascination with the occult, his 1975 piece on Johannes Kepler—the great seventeenth-century astronomer—in the journal Vistas in Astronomy had an extra meaning. In this eye-opening, one-page article Hynek argued that science historians are wrong to dismiss Kepler’s practice of astrology as merely something he did to keep alive. “Both his [Kepler’s] astrology and astronomy grew out of and partook in large measure of his deep mystical outlook,” Hynek (1975) wrote. He went on to assert that modern astronomy, with its exotic concepts like quasars, pulsars, and black holes, offered “a broad playing field for the metaphysicist.” According to Hynek, there was a “tenuous bond” linking present-day astronomy’s metaphysical thinking and Kepler’s brand of metaphysics, with both systems of thought being “the repository of fundamental questions not entertained on the present playing field of physical science” (Hynek 1975, 455). Hynek apparently saw Kepler as a kindred spirit, and, in this article, he was defending not only Kepler’s beliefs but his own.
“I have never stopped thinking about what must lie beyond all this,” Hynek once remarked to Vallee in Colorado as he sweepingly gestured toward the Rockies and the Great Plains (Vallee 1996, 232). For the professor, UFOs represented the “beyond,” that point where science could not reach. Having become an astronomer in order to discover the limits of science, Hynek wanted, maybe even needed, to believe in UFOs. It was a case of wishful thinking.
Hynek died of a brain tumor at Memorial Hospital in Scottsdale, Arizona, on April 27, 1986 (Folkart 1986). Halley’s Comet was then making its return appearance after a seventy-six-year journey through the solar system. Like Mark Twain, Josef Allen Hynek came into the world with the great comet, and he went out with it as well.
1. Rudolf Steiner (1861–1925) was an Austrian-born mystic who propagated a belief known as anthroposophy or spiritual science. According to Robert McDermott, the purpose of anthroposophy was “to bring to humanity an entirely new capability—knowledge of the spiritual world by conscious sense-free thinking” (McDermott 1984, 3). In his classic Fads and Fallacies in the Name of Science, Martin Gardner called Steiner’s Anthroposophical Society “the fastest growing cult in post-war Germany” (Gardner 1957, 169).
2. In a recently unearthed 1968 letter, the then-president of the New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology indicated to the chemist Linus Pauling that the Zamora episode was in fact a hoax perpetrated by a student (Sheaffer 2010, 25).
3. According to the SAO/NASA Astrophysics Data System, out of the over 100 astronomical publications Hynek had to his credit, only about a dozen appeared after 1966. Nearly one-half of these dozen articles related to Image Orthicon—a ground-breaking system using television technology to boost the light grasp of telescopes that Hynek helped develop in the 1950s and 1960s (Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory/National Aeronautics and Space Administration, N.d.).
Berland, Theodore. 1962. New look at the stars. Chicago Tribune (December 9).
Chicago Tribune. 1964. Probe flying object reports in 2 states. (May 1).
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Astronomers Observe Strange Quantum Distortion in Empty Space for the First Time Ever
Astronomers Observe Strange Quantum Distortion in Empty Space for the First Time Ever
Henning Dalhoff/Science Photo Library
Vacuum birefringence has been observed by a team of scientists for the first time ever using the European Southern Observatory's (ESO) Very Large Telescope (VLT).
The team observed neutron star RX J1856.5-375, which is about 400 light-years from Earth, with just visible light, pushing the limits of existing telescope technology.
A LITTLE LESS STRANGE
Vacuum birefringence is a weird quantum phenomenon that has only ever been observed on an atomic scale. It occurs when a neutron star is surrounded by a magnetic field so intense, it’s given rise to a region in empty space where matter randomly appears and vanishes.
This polarization of light in a vacuum due to strong magnetic fields was first thought to be possible in the 1930s by physicists Werner Heisenberg and Hans Heinrich Euler as a product of the theory of quantum electrodynamics (QED). The theory describes how light and matter interact.
Now, for the first time ever, this strange quantum effect has been observed by a team of scientists from INAF Milan (Italy) and from the University of Zielona Gora (Poland).
Using the European Southern Observatory’s (ESO) Very Large Telescope (VLT), a research team led by Roberto Mignani observed neutron star RX J1856.5-375, which is about 400 light-years from Earth.
Neutron stars are rather dim, yet they are 10 times more massive than our sun. As such, they have extremely strong magnetic fields permeating their surface and surroundings.
Vacuums are supposedly empty spaces (according to Einstein and Newton, at least) where light can pass through uninhibited or unchanged. But, according to QED, space is full of virtual particles continually popping in and out of existence. Very strong magnetic fields, like those surrounding neutron stars, can modify such spaces as vacuums.
Using the FORS2 instrument on the VLT, the researchers were able to observe the neutron star with just visible light, pushing the limits of existing telescope technology.
Studying VLT data on the star, the researchers saw linear polarization occurring at a significant degree of around 16%. This is very likely due to vacuum birefringence in the area surrounding RX J1856.5-375.
“The high linear [polarization] that we measured with the VLT can’t be easily explained by our models unless the vacuum birefringence effects predicted by QED are included,” said Mignani.
Given the limited technology used, Mignani believes that future telescopes can discover more about similar strange quantum effects by studying other neutron stars. “[Polarization] measurements with the next generation of telescopes, such as ESO’s European Extremely Large Telescope (EELT), could play a crucial role in testing QED predictions of vacuum birefringence effects around many more neutron stars,” he said.
“This measurement, made for the first time now in visible light, also paves the way to similar measurements to be carried out at X-ray wavelengths,” researcher Kinwah Wu said.
Concept art of SpaceX’s upcoming Falcon Heavy rocket. SpaceX
Fifty years after the debut of Star Trek, space is still the final frontier. This year scientists continued to explore the possibility of life on other planets, confirmed a 100-year-old theory about black holes and even intercepted possible extraterrestrial signals. Here are six of the biggest stories from the year in space:
1. Any conversation about modern space exploration has to begin with SpaceX. The aerospace manufacturer had another busy year, test firing an engine powerful enough to take humans to Mars and successfully landing part of its Falcon 9 rocket on a drone ship (proving that landings be just as successful on water as on Earth). As always, however, the company made its biggest headlines after a tragedy—the Falcon 9 exploded in midair while carrying a $200 million Facebook satellite. But SpaceX CEO Elon Musk didn’t dwell on the bad news: he was too busy outlining his plan for a human colony on Mars—the idea might not be too off base, given that just last month researchers at Arizona State University unearthed evidence of ancient life on the Red Planet.
2. Musk isn’t the only person interested in the possibility of life on other planets: this year Bill Nye advocated searching for extraterrestrial life on Jupiter’s moon Europa, which has twice as much seawater as the Earth— the Hubble Space Telescope has observed water vapor venting off the moon’s vast, unseen (for now) ocean. Nye actually thinks SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy rocket (currently in development) would be ideal for launching a probe toward Jupiter. The mission likely won’t occur until the 2020s, but that gives us something to look forward to.
3. Things got extra weird in August, when a team of scientists from the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) began investigating alien signals from deep space. The signals were seemingly beamed directly at our solar system from a civilization 95 light years away that can harness solar energy. There’s a good chance aliens are even closer than that, however—NASA’s director of planetary science echoed Musk and Nye, saying in a TED Talk that Mars, along with moons on Saturn and Jupiter were also probable sources of extraterrestrial life.
Obama Announces Plan For Life On Mars
4. While the government hasn’t offered an official stance on aliens, it’s still plenty interested in space as a whole: in October President Obamaunveiled his “Interplanetary Frontiers Directive,” aiming to expand human presence throughout the solar system. He encouraged NASA to focus on deep space exploration, with the ultimate goal of getting humans to Mars by the 2030s. The Obama administration also directed NASA to work with the commercial space industry and develop habitats which could safely house astronauts during long trips through deep space. President-elect Donald Trump actually has a similar plan for deep space research—the main directive he’s outlined for NASA is human exploration of the entire solar system by the end of this century.
5. The National Science Foundation’s Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) took an important step in this regard in February, when researchers announced the first direct detection of a gravitational wave. This ripple in spacetime in which two black holes merge was first proposed by Albert Einstein in his 1916 theory of relativity. Scientists also discovered this year that black holes can produce cosmic rays, space radiation which enters the atmosphere and bombards the Earth (though not to a harmful extent).
Illustration of the merger of two black holes and the gravitational waves that ripple outward as the black holes spiral toward each other. LIGO/T. Pyle
6. If any radioactive or otherwise alien force ever does attack our planet, however, we could always escape to Asgardia. A group of scientists at Vienna’s Aerospace International Research Center launched a crowdfunding campaign for their pacifist nation state in October—over 500,000 people signed up for it. The new country “will offer an independent platform free from the constraint of a land-based country’s laws,” its website reads. Asgardia plans to launch its first satellite late next year, and hopes to one day be recognized by the United Nations.
How many of these planned missions will actually blast off? How will Trump’s space initiatives pan out? And is there actually life on other planets? Here’s hoping these interstellar issues, and many others, will continue to start conversations in 2017.
Disclosure: Donald Trump is the father-in-law of Jared Kushner, the publisher of Observer Media.
Scientists observe Earth-like planet in search of alien life
Scientists observe Earth-like planet in search of alien life
In search of signs of extraterrestrial life, astronomers have observed the transit of a potentially habitable Earth-like extrasolar planet located 150 light-years away. A transit is a phenomenon in which a planet passes in front of its parent star, blocking a small amount of light from the star, like a shadow of the planet. Researchers, including those from the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (NAOJ) and the University of Tokyo, observed the transit of K2-3d using the MuSCAT instrument on the Okayama Astrophysical Observatory 188-cm telescope.
Using the next generation of telescopes, such as TMT, scientists expect to be able to search the atmosphere of the planet for molecules related to life, such as oxygen. With previous space telescope observations, researchers could not calculate the orbital period of the planet precisely, which makes predicting the exact times of future transits more difficult. This research group has succeeded in measuring the orbital period of the planet with a high precision of about 18 seconds. This greatly improved the forecast accuracy for future transit times.
Researchers will mow know exactly when to watch for the transits using the next generation of telescopes. This research result is an important step towards the search for extraterrestrial life in the future. K2-3d is an extrasolar planet about 150 light-years away that was discovered by the NASA K2 mission. It is 1.5 times the size of the Earth. The planet orbits its host star, which is half the size of the Sun, with a period of about 45 days.
Compared to the Earth, the planet orbits close to its host star (about 1/5 of the Earth-Sun distance). However, because the temperature of the host star is lower than that of the Sun, calculations show that this is the right distance for the planet to have a relatively warm climate like the Earth's. There is a possibility that liquid water could exist on the surface of the planet, raising the tantalising possibility of extraterrestrial life. K2-3d's orbit is aligned so that as seen from Earth, it transits (passes in front of) its host star.
This causes, short, periodic decreases in the star's brightness, as the planet blocks some of the star's light. This alignment enables researchers to probe the atmospheric composition of these planets by precise measurement of the amount of blocked starlight at different wavelengths. About 30 potentially habitable planets that also have transiting orbits were discovered by the NASA Kepler mission, but most of these planets orbit fainter, more distant stars. Since it is closer to Earth and its host star is brighter, K2-3d is a more interesting candidate for detailed follow-up studies.
The Mutual UFO Network (MUFON) has received a report from a retired engineer who claims to have interviewed a welder who "cut open" the flying saucer that reportedly crashed in the New Mexico desert, just outside Roswell, more than 69 years ago.
In a detailed report, the engineer – who has not been named – claimed to have carried out the interview in 1970, 23 years after the legendary event.
Roswell has been at the heart of the UFO scene since the military announced in a press release it had found the remains of a crashed flying saucer in the nearby desert, in July 1947.
But the following day it retracted the statement, saying it was in fact a damaged US Air Force air balloon.
Witnesses later came forward to say there had been alien bodies within the "crashed craft", which along with the wreckage were then taken to the mysterious top-secret Area 51 military base in Nevada.
In the shock report to MUFON, the former engineer first explained why the interview came about.
He said: "I joined the staff of the then new campus of the University of California at Santa Cruz.
"There were several sightings of UFOs in the mountains behind the campus in 1969 and reported to the University.
"I was asked to interview three people and file a report.
"I could find no credibility or evidence in these events but, because it was a small campus and everybody in the Science knew what was going on, I got the unwanted reputation of someone who knew about UFOs."
The engineers claimed this led him to be introduced to the welder who had reportedly been employed any the US Air Force at the Roswell base at the time of the crash.
He said: "The individual I interviewed was a welder by trade and after the war was employed at the Roswell Air Force base welding jigs and fixtures for servicing aircraft."
He said the welder revealed how he was told to load a cutting torch for a trip to the desert when they arrived at the crash site.
The report claims that a witness testified to seeing two alien bodies in the Roswell flying saucer.
The claims about aliens being found at Roswell have been reported to MUFON.
The engineer said in the report: "He [the welder] said they had a flatbed truck loaded with wreckage and there were soldiers on their hands and knees picking up every piece of wreckage and putting it in cloth bags.
"He said they drove a little farther out of sight from the wreckage and came upon a second group of people standing around an intact UFO.
"He said the brush was knocked down indicating the craft had skidded across the ground and came to rest nosed into a natural berm with the back side slightly off the ground.
"He described the craft as being about 25/26 feet in diameter with a large dome on top.
"He said the craft was the 'colour of weak tea' with a burnished finish.
"He said there were no signs of weld marks, seams, or rivets and that all of the edges had either an inside or outside radius. There were no visible windows or openings."
The welder described being told to cut an opening in the dome big enough for a man to crawl through.
The report said he began cutting a hole from the base of the dome.
He said he saw two beings who appeared to be dead. He said the cockpit had a strong smell of ammonia.
It read: "He said it was a tough alloy and slow cutting but the material was surprisingly thin. He tried bending the metal out of his way as he was cutting but the metal would spring back to its original shape without creasing."
He said there were several high ranking officers at the table along with four or five civilians in suits.
"He said that after he was debriefed he was told that he was not to talk about what he had seen as it was a state secret and if he was caught divulging anything he would spend the rest of his life in prison or worse.
"He was scared to death by the threat and my friend and myself are the only people he ever told and that was 23 years after the event."
The retired engineer said he promised the welder not to relay his story until after his death, which happened in the late 1980s.
It is not clear from his report why he waited until now to report it to US-based MUFON, which is the world's biggest organisation dedicated to UFO and alien investigation.
The retired engineer added: "During the interview I never sensed anything odd about his presentation or with his mannerisms.
"He provided a lot more information that I have stated but the interview was almost 50 years ago and forgotten.
"I think he was telling the truth.
"I have shared my knowledge of this interview with a couple of investigators but I think they doubted my credibility."
MUFON is investigating the claims, but the organisation has previously admitted it is sometimes sent completely fictitious and bogus material.
Visit Express.co.uk's weird section tomorrow, Friday December 2, for more exclusive revelations from this shock report made to MUFON.
MARCH 7, 1987 ………. PING WU, SZECHWAN PROVIDENCE, CHINA
A family of three, including a young child was awakened by a loud high-pitched hum coming from outside their small home. All three went outside to investigate and were nearly blinded by a beam of yellowish light coming from a huge reddish orange object shaped like a straw hat that hovered above them, slowly spinning. The hum grew louder and all three had a strange floating sensation then blacked out.
They all woke up and found themselves strapped to three steel tables in a circular room. The woman began screaming then a tiny hatchway opened in the wall and five 3-foot tall humanoid creatures stepped into the room. They were human in shape but with featureless faces with three huge whitish eyes on their foreheads. Their skin appeared transparent and bluish in color.
The creatures said nothing as they proceeded to remove blood from the arms of all three abductees. They then inserted long needles into their knees and ankle joints. The husband and the child appeared to have been in a trance-like state during the incident. Electrode like devices were taped to their skulls and the woman was again able to hear the loud high-pitched hum that they initially heard outside their home. One of the beings made an incision on the child’s thigh that was immediately healed by a pencil like device that was passed over it. Moments later the room became dark and everything began spinning. Their next conscious memory was walking on a roadside 7 miles from their home.
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Ik ben Pieter, en gebruik soms ook wel de schuilnaam Peter2011.
Ik ben een man en woon in Linter (België) en mijn beroep is Ik ben op rust..
Ik ben geboren op 18/10/1950 en ben nu dus 68 jaar jong.
Mijn hobby's zijn: Ufologie en andere esoterische onderwerpen.
Op deze blog vind je onder artikels, werk van mezelf. Mijn dank gaat ook naar André, Ingrid, Oliver, Paul, Vincent, Georges Filer en MUFON voor de bijdragen voor de verschillende categorieën...
Veel leesplezier en geef je mening over deze blog.