NASA Has Announced Its Unidentified Aerial Phenomena Research Team

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The two most unexplored places in our natural world remain the depths of our oceans and the cold blackness of space. But what about all that’s in between those two extremes? Are there still mysteries lurking in there?

The simple answer is yes—and NASA has announced a new team dedicated to solving some of these mysteries. This latest research chapter will be focusing on unidentified aerial phenomena, meaning they’ll investigate all the strange happenings taking place in our skies.

NASA Has Created A New Research Team

Though NASA is most often concerned with exploring things beyond our own planet, continuing to investigate the mysteries that lie in the great vastness of space, their latest announcement is bringing things much closer to home.

A telescope pointed up towards a star-filled night sky.
Pexels / Lucas Pezeta
Pexels / Lucas Pezeta

Their newest team will be investigating strange anomalies taking place in our own skies.

They’ll Be Studying UAPs

Otherwise known as unidentified aerial phenomena, another term for the more commonly used UFO or unidentified flying object.

An astronaut floating in space above the earth.
Pexels / Pixabay
Pexels / Pixabay

The team consists of 16 people, including a former NASA astronaut, several astrobiologists, an oceanographer, and a science journalist. The program will last nine months, during which the group will pour over unclassified data regarding UAPs that NASA already has.

After their research, they’ll put together a report that’s set to be released to the public in mid-2023.

Until Then, It’s Hush-Hush

NASA has stated that, while the data they’ll be using is unclassified, the nature of the research will be private until the release of the report.

A signpost featuring the NASA logo.
Unsplash / Laurenz Heymann
Unsplash / Laurenz Heymann

This announcement comes a few months after the Pentagon announced that it would be creating an office to track UAP reports, in addition to Congress holding its first public hearing about UFOs in over 50 years.

Their First Step Is Brainstorming

The team needs to figure out how exactly they’re going to go about analyzing collected UAP sightings, so they’ll first be looking at what metrics they can use to study the civilian, governmental, and commercial data they have available.

A silhouette of a satellite orbiting a planet's atmosphere.
Unsplash / NASA
Unsplash / NASA

“Exploring the unknown in space and the atmosphere is at the heart of who we are at NASA,” reads their press release, which also lists the team’s members.

How Does One Study The Unknown?

For those of us not involved in sciences like this, trying to tackle something we have no basis of knowledge for sounds daunting.

A woman sitting at a laptop doing research.
Pexels / Christina Morillo
Pexels / Christina Morillo

To be able to build a whole field of study up from ground zero (with not even a single document of prior research as a starting point) and turn it into a discovery-filled report that will better our understanding of our planet is nothing short of amazing. It shows the true power of the human brain and how much we can discover with the right minds.

NASA Is Hoping This Study Will Lead To Many More

In their official press release, they expressed that this program is designed to “lay the groundwork for future study on the nature of UAPs for NASA and other organizations.”

A time-lapse photo of bright, artificial lights in the night sky, spun in a circular shape.
Unsplash / Harry Shelton
Unsplash / Harry Shelton

Once the report is finished, NASA will be hosting a public meeting to discuss the findings. With this study, they’ll determine how future data can be collected so they may continue to monitor this phenomenon.

They Can’t Wait To Get Started

On their FAQ page regarding UAPs, NASA said they’re “going in with an open mind” regarding this project.

The earth and all its lights as seen from space.
Unsplash / NASA
Unsplash / NASA

“[…] we expect to find that explanations will apply to some events and different explanations will apply to others. We will not underestimate what the natural world contains, and we believe there is a lot to learn.”

The Question On Everyone’s Mind

Every time UAPs or UFOs are mentioned, people have to ask: does this have anything to do with aliens?

A bright blue glowing UFO against a dark background.
Pexels / Derpy CG
Pexels / Derpy CG

NASA hasn’t confirmed anything regarding extraterrestrials when it comes to the study, but they have continued to highlight their own research into alien life throughout this project’s development. It seems they’re open to a link between the two, but aren’t going to claim anything until the data backs it up.

They Do Have Other Motives

“Unidentified aerial phenomena are of interest for both national security and air safety and the study aligns with one of NASA’s goals to ensure the safety of aircraft,” reads the organization’s statement.

One of NASAs headquarters with a dark, cloudy sky overtop.
Unsplash / NASA
Unsplash / NASA

“[…] the focus of the study is to inform NASA what possible data could be collected in the future to scientifically discern the nature of UAP.”

We’re In Uncharted Waters

There’s no knowing what we will learn in the coming months. With such an unfamiliar field, one that has yet to receive such careful and close treatment as it’s about to, it’s impossible to predict the outcome.

A silhouette of a man standing below a brilliant sky of rainbow-tinted stars.
Unsplash / Greg Rakozy
Unsplash / Greg Rakozy

Regardless if this confirms theories about beings on other planets visiting ours or debunks them entirely, getting to know even a tiny bit more about the mysterious happenings in our world is a miracle in itself.

Daniel Mitchell-Benoit

Dan is a content writer with three years of experience under their belt, having mostly covered viral media but now shifting toward spirituality and astrology. He’s a strong believer in using one’s beliefs as a means of self-improvement and being in touch with whatever messages the universe has to offer.

He can’t wait to share his insights with a[…]