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Scientists on UFOs


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Summary: Quotes on the UFO phenomenon by various scientists.

"The least improbable explanation is that these things are artificial and controlled. . .my opinion for some time has been that they have an extraterrestrial origin."
-Dr. Maurice Biot, aerodynamicist and mathematical physicist.

Werner Von Braun, rocket scientist who was instrumental in the development of Nazi Germany's V2 rocket and later, the American space program.

  • "We find ourselves faced by powers which are far stronger than we had hitherto assumed, and whose base is at present unknown to us. More I cannot say at present.  We are now engaged in entering into closer contact with those powers, and in six or nine months time it may be possible to speak with some precision on the matter."    --This comment comes from "News Europa" Jan. 1959 and refers to mysterious events during the re-entry phase of the Juno 2 rocket during a test flight.
  • "...it is as impossible to confirm them (UFOs) in the present as it will be to deny them in the future."    --In a comment to Nasa scientist, Clark McClelland

"The discs use a means of propulsion different from ours.  There is no other possible explanation.  Flying saucers come from another world."
-Louis Breguet, French aircraft designer and manufacturer.

"What I found [in doing research for the book Project Delta] was compelling evidence to claim that most of these aerial objects far exceeded the terrestrial technology of the era in which they were seen.  I was forced to conclude that there is a great likelihood that Earth is being visited by highly advanced aerospace vehicles under highly 'intelligent' control indeed."
-Dr. Richard F. Haines, retired NASA senior research scientist at Ames Research Center and the Research Institute for Advanced Computer Science where he worked on the International Space Station.--From the preface of his book, CE-5, 1998.

"Many professional astronomers are convinced that saucers are interplanetary machines."
-Dr. Frank Halstead of the Darling Observatory, Minnesota--1957

Dr. J. Allen Hynek, former Chairman of the Dept. of Astronomy at North Western University and scientific advisor to Project Bluebook from 1952-1969

  • "When I first got involved in this field, I was particularly skeptical of people who said they had seen UFOs on several occasions and totally incredulous about those who claimed to have been taken aboard one.  But I've had to change my mind."    --1972
  • "It reminds me of tthe days of Galileo when he was trying to get people to look at the sun spots.  They would say that the sun is a symbol of God; God is perfect; therefore the sun is perfect; therefore spots cannot exist: therefore there is no point in looking."    --Hynek in Newsweek, Nov. 21, 1977, p. 97
  • "I was there at [Project] Bluebook and I know the job they had.  They were told not to excite the public, not to rock the boat... Whenever a case happened that they coud explain--which was quite a few--they made a point of that, and let that out to the media. . .Cases that were very difficult to explain, they would jump handsprings to keep the media away from them.  They had a job to do, rightfully or wrongfully, to keep the public from getting excited."    --From a filmed interview.  I don't know the date.

"UFO sightings are now so common, the military doesn't have time to worry about them. . .when a UFO appears, they simply ignore it. . .Unconventional targets are ignored because apparently we are only interested in Russian targets, possibly enemy targets. Something that hovers in the air, then shoots off at 5,000 miles per hour, doesn't interest us, because it can't be the enemy. UFOs are picked up by ground and air radar, and they have been photographed by gun camera all along. There are so many UFOs in the sky that the Air Force has had to employ special radar networks to screen them out."
-Lee Katchen, NASA atmospheric physicist in an announcement on June 7, 1968 in which he stated that he believed, based on his examination of 7,000 reports, that UFOs have an extraterrestrial origin.

"The trick would be, I think, to describe the project so that, to the public, it woud appear a totally objective study but, to the scientific community, would present the image of a group of non-believers trying their best to be objective, but having an almost zero expectation of finding a saucer."
-Robert J. Low, project coordinator of the Colorado University UFO Project (a.k.a. The Condon Committee), in a memorandum of instruction from August 9, 1966.  This telling quote gives an impression as to what may have been the goal of the Project: to either get the thing out of the way without hurting any of the scientists' credibility, or to comply with a rumored Air Force directive to produce a report showing UFOs to be unworthy of scientific consideration.

Clark McClelland, Aerospace Engineer and Technical Assistant to the Apollo Program Manager during the Apollo moon landings, also assisted in almost six hundred launches at Cape Canaveral, and in addition to working in the Mercury and Gemini programs, Space Lab and the Space Station, was heavily involved in the Space Shuttle program.

  • "As the Gemini Capsule entered orbit, the RCA world tracking team began to realize that 'our' capsule was not alone as viewed through their incoming telemetry, visual theodolite and other high powered optical data. Our capsule had four 'visitors'. The RCA team was ordered to run a recheck of the situation to be certain ghost images were not the cause. The Titan II stages were also excluded as causing the images. . . .After much huddling and discussion the intelligent determination was that we had other physical objects up there with our Gemini capsule. . . .The official NASA determination was that the objects were the torn particles or remains of the Titan upper stage that apparently entered orbit with the Gemini capsule. I was at the news conference and I nearly began to laugh. How could a broken stage overtake the capsule and stop slightly ahead of the capsule to accompany it an entire orbit around the earth? But I held my laugh to save my job."    --Commenting on the April 9, 1964 unmanned launch of the Gemini-Titan 2.
  • "The day will arrive when the governments of earth will finally admit we are not alone, that humans have come face to face with other lifeforms from the cosmos."

--These quotes come from Clark's website, The Stargate Chronicles

"I have absolutely no idea where the UFO's come from or how they are operated, but after ten years of research, I know they are something from outside our atmosphere."
-Dr. James E. McDonald, Professor of Atmospheric physics, University of Arizona. 1967.

"It seemed fantastic that there could be any such thing.  At first, the temptation was to say it was all nonsense, a series of optical illusions.  But there have been so many reports from responsible observers that they cannot be ignored.  It seems hardly possible that all these reports could be due to optical illusions."
-Dr. J. C. MacKenzie, Chairman of the Canadian Atomic Energy Control Board and former president of the National Research Council.--January, 1952

"The facts about saucers were long tracked down and results have long been known in top secret defense circles of more countries than one."
-Dr. Harry Messel,  Professor of Physics at Sydney University, Australia, in a 1965 statement.

"Based on the descriptions, I can definitely rule this out. There wasn't a balloon in 1947 or today that could account for this incident."
-C. B. Moore, General Mills Meteorologist and expert on weather balloons, when asked whether he believed the Roswell Incident could be explained by a Mogul balloon.

Dr. Herman Oberth, the father of modern rocketry

  • "UFOs are conceived and directed by intelligent beings of a very high order, and they are propelled by distorting the gravitational field, converting gravity into useable energy.  There is no doubt in my mind that these objects are interplanetary craft of some sort.  I and my colleagues are confident that they do not originate in our solar system, but we feel that they may use Mars or some other body as sort of a way station.  They probably do not originate in our solar system, perhaps not even in our galaxy."    --This comment was apparently made sometime in 1954, I don't know the source, but it seems consistent with the following quote from The American Weekly of Oct. 24, 1954:  "It is my thesis that flying saucers are real and that they are space ships from another solar system."
  • "We cannot take the credit for our record advancement in certain scientific fields alone.  We have been helped."  [reporter asks "By who?"]  "The people of other worlds."    --From a statement to a group of reporters after his retirement in 1960.

"I am completely convinced that [UFOs] have an out-of-world basis."
-Dr. Walther Riedel, research director and chief designer at Germany's rocket center in Peenemunde, also worked on classified projects for the U.S. after WW2. From LIFE Magazine, April 7, 1952.

"There are in excess of 200 reports of the type that we had from down in Louisiana, from people claiming that they have had direct contact with a spacecraft full of aliens.  I mean 200 reports from witnesses who are as reliable or more so than these people.  I'm not counting the reports from the obvious crackpots that have an axe to grind....If you accept them at face value then you're forced to accept that we have been visited.
-Dr. John Sathco, an Astronomer at the University of Southern California, 1973 (source: Real Audio from
Lost Encounters of 1973)

Wilbert Smith, Electrical engineer who convinced the Canadian government to establish Project Magnet to study the UFO phenomenon and later served as engineer-in-charge of the project.

  • "The matter is the most highly classified subject in the United States Government, rating higher even than the H-bomb.  Flying saucers exist.  Their modus operandi is unknown but concentrated effort is being made by a small group headed by Dr. Vannevar Bush."    --From a declssified Canadian government memorandum dated Nov. 21, 1950.
  • "...it soon became apparent that there was a very real and quite large gap between this alien science and the science in which I had been trained.  Certain crucial experiments were suggested and carried out, and in each case the results confirmed the validity of the alien science.  Beyond this point the alien science just seemed to be incomprehensible."    --In a speech concerning experiments allegedly suggested by EBEs (Extraterrestrial Biological Entities); March 31, 1958

"The illuminated rectangles I saw did maintain an exact fixed position with respect to each other, which would tend to support the impression of solidity.  I doubt that the phenomenon was any terrestrial reflection. . . .I do a great deal of observing (both telescopic and unaided eye) in the backyard and nothing of the kind has ever appeared before or since."
-Clyde Tombaugh, the astronomer who discovered Pluto, in a letter dated September 10, 1957.  The phenomenon was also witnessed by his wife.

"Like a turtle's back, with a cabin space some fifteen feet in diameter.  The bodies of six occupants were seared and the interior of the disc had been badly damaged by intense heat."
-Dr. Weisberg--From a memo by the director of the Borderland Science Research Foundation, Layne Meade, in 1949 concerning a description given by Dr. Weisberg, a Canadian physics proffessor who apparently examined some retrieved discs for the U. S. Air Force at Edwards AFB.

"Based upon unreliable and unscientific surmises as data, the Air Force develops elaborate statistical findings which seem impressive to the uninitiated public unschooled in the fallacies of the statistical method. One must conclude that the highly publicized Air Force pronouncements based upon unsound statistics serve merely to misrepresent the true character of the UFO phenomena."
-Yale Scientific Magazine (Yale University) Volume XXXVII, Number 7, April 1963. [Does anyone know who wrote this? I haven't had time to check it out.]

"What was especially important was that, at a distance of 180 kilometers apart, the records about the direction of movement of the strange aerial body in space, made independently by at least two different observers was basically the same. . . .To the present time this strange phenomenon has not been satisfactorily explained, yet there were thousands of good observers who had seen it."
-Zhang Zhousheng, astronomer at the Yunnan Observatory in Chengdu City, China--Zhousheng and others nearby watched a strange glowing, spiral object moving steadily across the sky for about five minutes on the evening of July 26, 1977.

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