Summary: Researchers have tried to establish one aspect of the UFO phenomenon; not at the locations where sightings have taken place, but as regards the time of the periodicity of UFOs. The reports of sightings are based on the time factor with possible correlation of their periodicity, to type of physical interpretation that shows a similar periodicity.
Researchers have tried to establish one aspect of the UFO phenomenon; not at the locations where sightings have taken place, but as regards the time of the periodicity of UFOs. The reports of sightings are based on the time factor with possible correlation of their periodicity, to type of physical interpretation that shows a similar periodicity.
It is important to differentiate between UFO "waves" and UFO "flaps", as these terms are often used by researchers. UFO "flaps" are flurries of UFO activity which can be quite intense, and concentrated to localised areas of a country. However, if the whole of a country including Europe were similarly effected simultaneously, then this would be a UFO "wave". UFO "waves" tend to occur on a cyclic basis, whereas "flaps" appear to be decidedly irregular in occurrence and are probably not predictable.
It is possible to attain a distribution in the frequency of UFO observations to establish four aspects:
1 ) Long-term movement or tendency
2 ) Cyclic variations
3 ) Seasonal variations
4 ) Irregular variations (rumour)
The first study that appeared to yield some results was that of Aime Michel in his theory of Orthoteny, first published in 1958, and based upon the French UFO wave of October 1954. Taking the sighting accounts individually, he discovered that UFOs seemed to be employing preferential flight corridors. Michel's approach deduced that the probability a psychological phenomenon would occur along a randon alignment is zero. The existence of witnesses, and the order of their succession in time, and their geographical distribution in space are irrefutable objective facts. If the places where sightings have occurred are entered on a map and straight lines are found, there is no subjective stage in the reasoning, and therefore the process is unassailable.
However, there are areas in this theory which are a matter for debate. In 1966, Dr Jacques Vallee produced a system for giving UFO sighting places at random, based on a classic program for the production of random numbers on a computer. He showed that after 25 sighting points the probability that any isolated points remain becomes practically nil, and that the number of four-point alignments, to within 2.5 kilometres (on a map of France) is already five or thirty sightings.
The number of alignments created by chance is consequently far from negligable, and it seems that the alignments of three or four points could all be explained in this way -- if the number of sightings is big enough. Vallee emphasised moreover the effect that the accuracy of co-ordinates can have on the number of alignments which can be determined. But straight lines with five or six points or more have a chance probability of virtually zero.
Both Bernard Delair in the UK in 1976, and Dr David Saunders, USA in 1977, have demonstrated a ten-year cycle in reports of UFOs. Delair discovered a connection between all UFO phenomena, and the sunspot cycle, and identified a more complex subcycle within this major phase. These peaks in the cycle relate to UFO waves, although activities do occur at all times including minimum cycle. There also appears to be a geographical link in the cycles, however this is proving to be difficult to resolve. Other researchers, Derr and Persinger in 1990 make the case for some categories of UFO reports being the result of tectonic strain.
Dr Jacques Vallee found that, after elimination of a general tendency to long-period variations, possibly attributable to the generations of false sightings by the public, there remains a distribution of sightings which in essence pertains to the cyclic component. This is the principal unknown factor Vallee found after calculation and rechecking to eliminate errors, that there were two cycles of fifteen months and twenty-six months respectively. This second figure is precisely the same cycle of the close approach of Mars to Earth.
It may be coincidence that the twenty-six month period relates to the opposition of Mars -- it's always possible to find some astronomical phenomena whose frequency corresponds approximately with the UFO periodicity. If there is no doubt of the fact that the UFO phenomenon makes its appearance in waves, it is certain that it also exists outside of the waves. Even with the correlation with Mars, that still would not in any way prove that UFOs were coming rom Mars; the planet may be serving as a relay station or base for travellers who have come from another stellar sytem.
Assuming that UFOs are of the extraterrestrial hypothesis (ETH), one would have to reason the aliens' intelligence in the light of their endeavors in monitoring or investigating life on Earth. It's probable that any ET culture whom has a vested interest here, would probably travel at favourable times, and use optimum flight corridors to attain the shortest economic distance in its incoming flights from space into our atmosphere.
Patterns may be extrapolated from statistics over a long period of time which may indicate reasons of intent from the alien intelligence. Even if there are patterns for one factor, that does not necessarily mean that is a possible answer to those patterns. If there were other factors that have a meaning in direct releationship with the first factor, the probability of that happening all the time must make that scenario important to further research.
Researching statistics of UFO reports of the US and United Kingdom for each year from 1947 to 1991 appears to show a correlation to important positions of the Moon and Mars. These positions appear to have a relationship to each other that is relevant to incoming flight patterns.