Project Blue Book was a series of studies done by the U.S. Air Force between 1952-1969 to look into UFO sightings.
The History Channel has a new series about the program
Here are 5 facts about the top-secret program.
1. It wasn’t the government’s first UFO study
In 1947, Project SIGN became the first government operation to determine if there were alien aircraft among us after a pilot reported seeing 9 UFOs over Washington’s Mount Rainier.
The initial study supposedly published a report saying that alien beings might be the source of the sightings. Apparently, air force personnel destroyed the report and a more skeptical operation called GRUDGE was launched before Blue Book.
2. A special protocol was developed for UFO sightings
Standardized questionnaires were developed to debrief people who believed they saw UFOs. The questions included, “Draw a picture that will show the shape of the object or objects. What was the condition of the sky? Did the object: Suddenly speed up and rush away at any time? Change shape? Flicker, throb, or pulsate?”
3. Some reports have never been explained
Out of the thousands of UFO reports collected between 1952-1969 (over 12,000, in fact), 701 incidents were never explained. Almost half of the unidentified reports happened in 1952 alone. In 1953, it became a crime for members of the military to discuss UFO reports with civilians. Punishment could be up to 2 years in prison.
4. The only scientist involved in the program was bothered by its methods
Dr. J. Allen Hynek was Project Blue Book’s only consistent scientific consultant. The project’s leaders routinely sought to dismiss the existence of UFOs. Hynek said, “The staff of Blue Book, both in numbers and in scientific training, is grossly inadequate … there is virtually no scientific dialogue between Blue Book and the outside scientific world … The statistical methods employed by Blue Book are nothing less than a travesty.”
5. A new government inquiry into UFOs was launched in 2007
The U.S. government spent $22 million between 2007-2012 studying UFOs in an inquiry called “Advanced Aviation Threat Identification Program.” More than three dozen of the studies became public this year and you can view them HERE.
What about you? Do you think they’re out there?