Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Ufology is the study of Unidentified flying object (UFO) reports, sightings and other related phenomena.
While many ufologists strive for legitimacy and some are respected scientists in other fields, ufology has never been fully embraced by the scientific community, for a number of reasons. Many Ufologists are amateurs (or worse, individuals in search of fame and fortune), and however well intentioned, are unfamiliar with generally accepted research standards, thus often rendering their own research useless even to sympathetic mainstream experts. Many amateur Ufologists have been criticised for accepting as true stories or tales without demanding supporting evidence or conducting even cursory research.
Some ufologists consider the general attitude of mainstream academics as arrogant and dismissive, or bound to a rigid World view that disallows any evidence contrary to previously-held notions. Astronomer J. Allen Hynek's famous comment regarding this subject is, "Ridicule is not part of the scientific method and people should not be taught that it is."
Ufologists embrace a wide spectrum of approaches, beliefs and attitudes, from those regarded by some as quacks or kooks (e.g. David Icke); to respected mainstream scientists like Carl Sagan or Auguste Meessen , some of whom argue that UFO reports are as worthy of study as any topic, and deserve case-by-case analysis using the scientific method. Study of UFO sightings this way has yielded very interesting and important results, although generally about weather phenomena (see Hessdalen) and human perception, such as the study lead by the SOBEPS for the Belgian flap in 1989-'90 or the interesting studies of the GEPAN/SEPRA in France.
Broadly, there are five schools of thought to explain UFO sightings:
- The self-explanatory Extraterrestrial hypothesis.
- The Psychosocial Hypothesis.
- The Psychopathological hypothesis .
- Various occult, paranormal, supernatural or religious explanations, such as the "Blessed Virgin Mary hypothesis".
- The notion that UFO's are best explained as advanced, secret or experimental aircraft of decidely earthly origin.
For a list of major UFO sightings and related reports, see List of major UFO sightings
Ufological Groups or Individual
- Committee for the Scientific Investigation of Claims of the Paranormal, or CSICOP
- Erich von Däniken's theories, where he tries to combine what he considers historical proof of extraterrestrial visits with a theory on extraterrestrial help in the evolution of humanity.
- Edward Condon
- J. Allen Hynek
- UFO Norge , a Norwegian project dedicated to collect all material on observations and physical traces of UFO activity in Norway.
- CUN , first Italian private centre directed by scientists like Dr. Pinotti, active since the 1960s in the whole Italy.
- United States Air Force Project Blue Book
- Jacques Vallee
- John Keel
- Jean-Jacques Velasco
- Claude Poher
- Roberto Pinotti
- Alfredo Lissoni
The contents of this article is licensed from www.wikipedia.org under the GNU Free Documentation License. Click here to see the transparent copy and copyright details