Frequently Asked Questions, with Answers

» When did UFOs first appear in modern times?  Strange objects in the skies have been reported since Biblical times, but the current era of UFO experience is considered by historians to have begun with a group of sightings on June 24, 1947.  The most famous is by Kenneth Arnold.

» Is there such a thing as a ufologist?  Data collection is a major activity of ufologists: investigation and documentation of sighting reports.  Sightings reported to the U.S. Air Force between 1947 and 1968 were frequently investigated by FBI agents or, occasionally, by professional scientists under Government contract.  Much investigation is done privately, often very competently, by amateurs, who may publish their better cases.  Certification as a Field Investigator is offered by MUFON to those who successfully pass an exam, with 100 introductory-level questions on astronomy, chemistry, ethics, hypnosis, interview technique, meteorology, natural and anomalous phenomena, photography, physical evidence and measurements, physics, physiology, polygraphs, public relations, psychology, radar, radiation, report writing and documentation, witness therapy, and witness reliability.  Sighting reports from MUFON Field Investigators are evaluated annually by a Science Review Board of 10 members: currently two Ph.D.s, three M.S., five B.S.; including four engineers, three physicists, two chemists, and one geologist.  (MUFON UFO Journal, September 2016, 581 pg. 11.)  Ufologists tend to specialization, according to their professional background and interests.  See notable examples under distinguished investigators.

» How did you, the host of this Website, become interested in UFOs?  With my inclination toward physics and engineering, the reports made in 1947 while I was in high school were fascinating.  First from pilot Kenneth Arnold in June, and then from Roswell in July.  Evidently the UFO overcame gravity and inertia!  In those weeks, I rode my bicycle to the newspaper stand for each successive edition.

» Do you believe in UFOs?  I believe the UFO phenomenon is real, simply because so many people have experienced it, reported it, and even measured it (e.g., by photographing it).  Even animals sense it.  A definition of "real" is pertinent: the UFO may come from a different reality than our familiar four-dimensional universe.

» What does the public think of UFOs?  The Gallup Organization irregularly does telephone surveys in the U.S., on the UFO phenomenon, often as part of a broader study.  Results vary over time, from one poll to the next.  Here is a summary of the UFO section in a Gallup survey of adult (18 years of age and older) opinion on paranormal phenomena in general, for CNN Television, taken September 3 - 5, 1996.  The percentage error reported is at 95% confidence limit.  Further reading: Stephanie Kelley-Romano, "A Report on the Demographics and Beliefs of Alien Abduction Experiencers", CUFOS Journal of UFO Studies, 2006, New Series 9 pgs. 1-20.


Yes, %

No, %

Don't Know, %

Adults Asked

P.C. Error

Have you heard or read about UFOs?






Have you, yourself, ever seen anything you thought was a UFO?






In your opinion, are UFOs something real and not just people's imagination?






Do you think UFOs have ever visited earth in some form?






Do you think there are people somewhat like ourselves living on other planets in the universe?






Do you think there is life of some form on other planets in the universe?






In your opinion, does the U.S. government know more about UFOs than it is telling us?






» What are some of the more interesting UFO sighting reports?




13 Mar 1997

Central Arizona

Low-flying triangle reported by numerous witnesses

27 Sep 1989

480 km SSE of Moscow, Russia

Flattened-sphere landing in city park, with entity, robot, and over 30 witnesses

17 Feb 1967

Palmer, MA

Mother of five photographs very human-looking occupants in CE3

19 Aug 1952

Palm Beach, FL

Roots and grass charred where scoutmaster and three scouts see lights in trees

24 June 1947

Mt. Rainier, WA

Nine bright objects moving southward in echelon toward Mt. Adams

» Have you, the host of this Website, ever seen a UFO?  What did it look like?  I have never seen a UFO, but from verbal reports and witness films, it behaves more like a hologram, appearing inertialess and able to materialize and dematerialize. Yet it displays electromagnetic effects on our environment: ionizing the surrounding air, optically polarizing its transmitted light, and burning the ground where it lands.

» Who are the Men in Black?  UFO experients frequently report a subsequent visit from one or several official looking men, dressed in dark business clothes, who may offer credentials.  They warn the witness not to talk about the sighting and add threats of dire consequences otherwise.  They may confiscate evidence, such as photographs, from the witness.  These visitors are often reported to have uncanny knowledge of detail, even when there has been no publicity, and to have odd characteristics and mannerisms.  They are said to drive black Cadillacs or limousines.  The witness may experience the Oz factor during the visit.  Researchers distinguish Men in Black, where the visitors are quite likely genuine government agents, from MIB -- mysterious visitors who seem non-human, surrealistic, and perhaps from another dimension of reality.  See multiple citations in The UFO Encyclopedia, some including an eyewitness account.  See also "Folklore of the 'Men in Black': challenge to the prevailing paradigm" (MUFON UFO Journal, March 1990, 263 pgs. 3-12, 26), by Peter M. Rojcewicz, who personally experienced the MIB phenomenon and Oz factor while working in a library on his Ph.D. thesis.  Further reading: The Real Men in Black.

» In the Roswell incident, what did the U.S. Government find and what has it hidden?  The U.S. Air Force -- then the Army Air Corp -- attributes the 1947 Roswell incident to a weather balloon: Don Schmitt and Kevin D. Randle, "Fort Worth press conference: J. Bond Johnson connection"; November/December 1990 International UFO Reporter 15, 6, pg. 15 [Ce].  However, dozens of witnesses to the event have been found and interviewed, saying "that was no weather balloon" and some of these saw the alien bodies, either on the ground at the site or during subsequent autopsy; e.g., VHS tape hosted by Paul Davids, executive producer of Showtime TV movie Roswell: "The UFO Cover-Up Continues...", 1994 [ CV]Majic Eyes Only lists 75 reported incidents of recovering alien artifacts or UFO crash remains.  See Top Secret/Majic for results of Stanton T. Friedman's research on U.S. Government policy behind the Air Force position.  Also, visit  Retired McGill University psychologist Don C. Donderi, citing Samuel Johnson, comments: "Neither failure of scientists to explain how UFOs work, nor failure of governments to admit such knowledge, invalidates the conclusion drawn from human experience"; i.e., UFOs are real and anomalous; J. Scientific Exploration 28, 2, Summer 2014, pg. 371.  See also Mexico's Roswell.

» What is Area 51/Groom Lake/S4?  The U.S. Government operates a top secret, high security, black budget facility in southern Nevada for development and testing of advanced aircraft.  It is rumored to house recovered UFOs, and even Grey aliens.  See Glenn Campbell's Baedeker, Area 51 Viewer's Guide, for maps, cautions, videos, anecdotes, magazine articles, and related books.

» What information is available in declassified government studies of UFOs?  In the United States, the official position since termination of Project Blue Book on 17 December 1969 is that there was no indication from UFO reports to date of any threat to national security and, therefore, UFO investigations were discontinued; accumulated records were transferred permanently to the National Archives and are available for public inspection.  See also  But various researchers, hearing rumors of continuing government interest in UFOs, have since used FOIA to search for and force declassification of secret information.  See Clear Intent or its reprint, The UFO Cover-Up for fascinating details of involvement since 1969 at FBI, CIA, State Department, and other agencies; also UFO FBI Connection, which notes on pg. 279 that abduction of a human being is a federal offense and documents the FBI response in 1967 to an actual abduction report.  Other books with titles claiming revelation of secret information are generally based on direct input from witnesses and unofficial government contacts.  Disclosure Project identifies several hundred of these military and civilian individuals who have volunteered to testify, before the U.S. Congress, about first-hand UFO knowledge obtained while working for their government.  See also Project Condign.  Paul Cerney, a San Francisco Bay Area investigator, claimed he found an unpublished report of a UFO over Holloman Air Force Base, NM: two aircraft mechanics witnessed a strange object and were then visited by USAF representatives who asked them to look at a book of photographs, with more than 300 pages showing all types of UFO.  (MUFON UFO Journal, March 1973, when it was called Skylook.)  Black helicopters at the UFO sighting location cannot be uniquely interpreted as indicating alien presence or misidentification of alien objects.  See Black Helicopters.

» What is the IAA?  Jacquelyn Rose claims to have been shown in 1990 a communiqué between two offices of an agency titled Intercontinental Aerospace Alliance, older than recorded human history, and concerned with humanity destroying itself and the earth's resources. "It is quite real, very secret, funded by every major government in the world, and with about 2500 members".  See Minding the Watchers,

» What do you think will happen with future research concerning UFOs?  Progress will continue: publicly, we've learned a lot, from anecdotal reports, even though most scientists don't accept them as evidence. There is a taxonomy for the accumulated information -- e.g., Hynek's CE1, CE2, etc. Statistics are available on object shape, time of day, effects and the environment, etc., etc.  Secretly, our government must know a lot more, from studying crashed UFOs at the locations we've heard about, and from photos taken by aircraft crew. We are still learning from research on people who think they have been abducted.  What we have learned since 1947 is evidently not enough to build our own UFO, or we would see the military using them.  The UFO may function paranormally, and humans might be unable to fly one even if it were captured intact.  E.g., the UFO pilot may control it telepathically.

» Where do UFOs come from?  The overwhelming anecdotal evidence -- many reports of sudden appearance / disappearance or materialization / dematerialization -- implies that UFOs are

» from another time; i.e., they are extratemporal, or they are
» from another dimension of reality; i.e., extradimensional, they travel interdimensionally

Attributing the reports to visits from outer space -- the extra-terrestrial hypothesis -- is parochial and ignores the details.  Note these words of J. Allen Hynek in UFOs Merit Scientific Study: "There is a tendency in 20th-century science to forget that there will be a 21st-century science, and indeed, a 30th-century science, from which vantage points our knowledge of the universe may appear quite different. We suffer perhaps, from temporal provincialism, a form of arrogance that has always irritated posterity."

» What are the strangest features of the reported objects?

» mass: why is the UFO so heavy?  “The ground was cold and frozen; even our feet couldn’t make an impression, yet there were three evenly-spaced conical depressions, each about seven inches in diameter.  Whatever the craft was, it had to be heavy.”  See The Rendlesham Enigma, Book 1: Timeline, pg. 107.

» luminosity: how can a light "brighter than anything ever seen on this planet" not hurt the eyes?  "It was 'brilliant' but not dazzling or tiring to the eye"; J. Scientific Exploration 22, 3, Fall 2008, pg. 293

» anomalous light beams: why, in some cases where a beam of light is emitted by the object, does the beam appear truncated at some point instead of continuing into the distance?  If the beam appears to bend, is this the same phenomenon or a different one?
flight dynamics: why does the UFO sometimes tumble in flight?  If it contained a pilot and observers, we would expect it to fly smoothly.  Perhaps that is not its function at all.  Similarly, why is the unknown object sometimes in random attitude?  E.g., it may be standing on one edge of the "wing"; if occupied, this seems an impractical orientation for anyone inside.  Comment: if the object overcomes gravity and does not fly aerodynamically, it may not need to be in what to us would appear a normal flight attitude
» shadow delay: in at least one case, observers walking around a hovering UFO, with a bright light behind them, cast shadows upon it.  When the observers stop momentarily, their shadows take another step, a time anomaly, perhaps a clue to the UFO propulsion mechanism.  Consider Albert Einstein’s explanation of gravity as a space-time distortion. See The Rendlesham Enigma, Book 1: Timeline, pg. 382.

» bifurcation: how can the object clone into duplicates which then recombine?  Does it manipulate time in overcoming gravity?  Are we seeing the same object with each clone where the object would be at a small difference in time?

» What are aliens?

» What technology do aliens have?  Most observations of alien technology occur in close encounters with Greys; we can only speculate on the development level of alien science in general.  Greys employ:

» advanced understanding of the gravitational field
» advanced biomedical engineering

» How do you think our first encounter with aliens is going to affect the world?  It is estimated that by 1992, one in fifty people had already been abducted and subjected to clinical examination and genetic experimentation / engineering by grey aliens: Roper Report.  Greys may have an additional motive: abductees are frequently told they have a future role to play, of which they will be advised "at the proper time".  Optimistic students of the UFO phenomenon see more than the cold, clinical description of abductions: they see directed evolution of humanity.  Contact may already occur, outside the abduction scenario, with completely human-looking aliens.  See also hybridization and What are Aliens?

» Have you ever had an encounter with an extraterrestrial?  None of our associates has, but we have talked to people who claim an encounter with an alien species, and we have in our database many other reports of encounters.  Note that the term "extraterrestrial" implies an origin elsewhere than earth, which is an assumption.  Then see the question: "Where do UFO come from?"

» Have there ever been close encounters past the second kind?  All types are reported, including CE4.

» Do you think abductions are real or a figment of imagination?  There are now, in 2008, hundreds of first-hand, detailed accounts, obtained by multiple, credentialed investigators from normal people in good mental health; abductions must be real events.  See The Abduction Experience and The Holocaust Vis-à-Vis UFO.  Also, The Vatican on UFO.

» What is the strangest abduction story you have ever heard?  As described in Witnessed: The True Story of the Brooklyn Bridge UFO Abductions, Linda Cortile (pseudonym), a 40-something housewife, is floated out the front window of her 12th story New York City apartment at 3:00 AM by three Greys in view of multiple witnesses, while husband and two children remain asleep in their beds, and is examined aboard the hovering UFO before it disappears into the nearby East River!

» What is your main fear of aliens?  Even those people who are familiar with literature on the UFO phenomenon would find the typical abduction a traumatic experience: cultural shock of contact with strange beings, loss of personal control, and real physical and mental pain from the clinical procedures performed on them.  Certainly, this would be much more frightening to anyone else.  How to Defend Yourself against Alien Abduction offers nine techniques to resist abducting aliens.

» Is professional help available for abductees?  If you seek help for post-traumatic stress disorder experienced from abduction, we recommend you work with a professional who is aware of the UFO phenomenon and is open-minded about it.  Some service providers are skeptical and may treat you for a delusional psychosis.  Recognizing this problem, the Bigelow Holding Corp. financed and distributed the Roper Report to 100,000 mental health professionals.  Notable UFO organizations are aware of local support groups, usually led by an interested clinician who encourages the members to interact and share their abduction experiences.  The work of the late psychotherapist Constance Clear with her Friday Night Group is typical: Reaching for RealityMary Rodwell's work, Awakening has questions and answers to guide your personal search.  See also distinguished investigators.  Abductees may consider participating in AMP, the Ambient Monitoring Project.