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(Very) Local SETI: The Launch of a New UFO Science (Very) Local SETI: The Launch of a New UFO Science

- (Huffington) - 2 years ago...

Last July, Russian billionaire Yuri Milner announced the launch of a bold $100 million project "to reinvigorate the search for life in the universe."  The amplified SETI initiative is "the most powerful, comprehensive and intensive scientific search ever undertaken for signs of intelligent life beyond Earth," according to the project's website.  "The chance of finding life has risen a billion-fold when we realized that Earth-like planets are not rare, but that there are literally billions of them just within our own galaxy," Astronomer Royal Lord Martin Rees stated at the time.  Noting that the payoff could be "colossal," he wondered whether alien life to be discovered could be organic, or maybe "machines created by long long-dead civilizations." PHL @ UPR Arecibo (phil.upr.edu) July 23, 2015 As someone who has studied official UFO/UAP (Unidentified Aerial Phenomena) documentation for many years, I was naturally inspired -- even elated -- by this announcement. But at the same time, I couldn't help relating it to my all too keen awareness of the taboo against taking UFOs seriously, despite the obvious relationship of UFO phenomena to the quest for finding extraterrestrial life. After all, couldn't some UFOs be the machines that Rees referred to? And must they belong only to dead civilizations? There is no sign that Milner's team will include our own solar system among the many others that it will search for signs of intelligent life. Most scientists have repeatedly stated that whatever data (if any) we have on UFOs are insufficient for study. Yet, as I made clear in my book UFOs: Generals, Pilots and Government Officials Go On the Record, there is plenty of evidence for the existence of unexplained aerial phenomena, and some governments (such as France and Chile), in cooperation with their own scientific teams, have made this a matter of official record. Even so, the larger, multi-disciplinary search for extraterrestrial intelligence, seeking even the tiniest and most wide ranging clues, has never given a nod to this "forbidden realm" of intriguing, highly suggestive evidence -- in fact, it has been completely ignored. And at the same time, SETI has yet to find any evidence for extraterrestrial intelligence in its effort to detect radio signals or light from distant locations "that would reveal the presence of technically sophisticated beings," as SETI describes it. But now, for the first time, a new group of scientists and other professionals is determined to change this outdated and unbalanced scenario, once and for all.  Yes, we do need more scientific data on UFOs -- but who is going to provide it? In October 2013, I attended a meeting led by Mark Rodeghier, scientific director of the J. Allen Hynek Center for UFO Studies, and political scientist Alexander Wendt, whom some of you might rec...

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