What are the physical constraints on reported Unidentified Aerial Phenomena (UAP), also known in flying saucer circles as UFOs, or Unidentified Flying Objects?
That’s at the underbelly of a new paper authored by Harvard University’s Avi Loeb, conducted in partnership with Loeb’s Galileo Project and the newly established Department of Defense, All-domain, Anomaly Resolution Office.
“We derive physical constraints on interpretations of ‘highly maneuverable’ Unidentified Aerial Phenomena (UAP) based on standard physics and known forms of matter and radiation,” notes the paper, published in “Draft Under Review” status on a Harvard website.
The new draft research paper, dated March 7, 2023, implies a “useful limit on observations of UAP which bound the hypothetical explanations and can support limitations on interpretations of data,” the paper explains.
What is distinctive is that the paper is authored by astrophysicist Loeb and Sean Kirkpatrick, Director of All-domain Anomaly Resolution Office.
Human bias and error
For example, one of the most common sets of data within the military holdings comes from FLIR (forward looking infrared) pods. These sensors provide an accurate resolved image of relative thermal measurements across the scene.
“Typical UAP sightings are too far away to get a highly resolved image of the object and determination of the object’s motion is limited by the lack of range data. The range is usually estimated using the flight dynamics of the platform and some fixed points in the scene – if either are available. The error in estimating the range gives rise to a significant variation in the calculated velocity and is subject to human bias and error,” the paper observes.
Furthermore, claims of objects exceeding the transonic to supersonic range should be evaluated against the known physics of ionization, radar reflectivity, temperature, sonic booms, and fireballs, according to Loeb. “All of which can more effectively and accurately bound the velocity, and hence drive the range calculation. This will, in turn, when matched with the specifics of the sensor, allow for better estimates of the size, shape, and mass of the object in question,” the paper concludes.
To view the draft paper – “Physical Constraints on Unidentified Aerial Phenomena” – go to: