Compelling Evidence Cited
Scientists Say UFOs Warrant More Study

“The information isn’t as solid as we’d like, and we’d like to draw a solid conclusion.”
Peter Sturrock,
Stanford University

By Ron Harris
The Associated Press
S A N   F R A N C I S C O,  June 29 — Scientists reviewing reports of UFOs have concluded that some sightings are accompanied by compelling physical evidence that merits further study.
     A nine-member panel said there is no convincing evidence that extraterrestrial intelligence was responsible for the physical evidence.
     But the scientists added that some of the physical evidence remained unexplained and researchers might learn something new in evaluating purported UFO sightings.
     “If there is an interest in trying to get serious answers to the UFO problem, it would be sensible for scientists to focus on the physical evidence as opposed to witness testimony,” said Stanford University physicist and panel director Peter Sturrock.
     The panel’s report is the first independent review of UFO phenomena since 1966, when the U.S. Air Force commissioned the University of Colorado to conduct a scientific study of UFOs, headed by Edward Condon.

Rare Natural Phenomena
Sturrock’s panel examined evidence including photographs of purported UFOs, radar data and reports of soil damage near supposed UFO landing sights. Some of the reports could have been explained by rare natural phenomena such as electrical activity above thunderstorms.
     Other reports were due to secret military activities, the report concluded.
     The study was the brainchild of Laurance Rockefeller, Henry Diamond and Sturrock, who felt the field of UFO study “ … is in a very unsatisfactory state of ignorance and confusion.”
     The panel was financed by the LSR Fund, chaired by Rockefeller.
     Comprised of astronomers, physicists and experts in other scientific disciplines, the panel met last year in New York to discuss the data and in San Francisco to finalize the report.
     “The information isn’t as solid as we’d like, and we’d like to draw a solid conclusion,” Sturrock said.

Copyright 1998 Associated Press. All rights reserved.