You're in good company if you often look up into the dark night — into the glittering specks of space and sky — and think you see something extraordinary, fantastic or even unexplainable streak across the sky. People have been reporting unexplainable objects in the sky since the time of the ancient Greeks. We're used to hearing them called UFOs or unidentified flying objects.
NASA now even has an independent team of 16 scientists and astrophysicists who will be studying and attempting to understand more about these mysterious observations in the sky, or as they call them unidentified aerial phenomena (UAPs).
For nine months starting Oct. 24, 2022, the team will pour over unclassified data collected by civilian star gazers, national intelligence and security departments. The purpose is to discover new ways to collect and understand UAP data in the future and to determine the best ways to use that information to ensure the safety of aircraft. They'll release their findings to the public in mid-2023.
This isn't the first time a U.S. government agency has studied UFOs. One of the most famous is Project Blue Book, which was in the 1950s and '60s. But it might be the first time they've focused on UAPs instead of UFOs.
We know. We were confused, too, at first. UAPs? Why not UFOs?