Nasa is looking into repurposing satellites that are already in space to hunt for aliens.
Last month, the US Space Agency announced it was launching an eight-month inquiry to investigate hundreds of unexplained UFO sightings.
The inquiry is being led by Dr Thomas Zurbuchen, of Nasa’s Science Mission Directorate, who has begun investigating whether satellites in space could be repurposed to give another view on strange aerial phenomena reported from Earth.
Speaking to journalists in London this week, Col Pam Melroy, the deputy administrator of Nasa, said: “This team is going to be looking at questions like: ‘do we have sensors that can see things, you know, take another look at the evidence?’.
“One of the big questions that Thomas asked is: ‘We have a tonne of satellites looking down at the Earth, are any of them useful?’
“I mean, before you build a rover that’s going to Mars, you ask yourself, ‘What’s the sensor I have to build to detect the most interesting thing?’ So they’re going to really focus on that.
“How would you get the evidence that you need to be able to determine if it’s an optical phenomena or some other kind (of phenomena)?”
Even the greatest scientists were ridiculed
Bill Nelson, a Nasa administrator, told journalists that he had read all the classified documents relating to UFOs and was convinced that nobody knew what they were.
Questioned as to why Nasa was embarking on such a seemingly “fringe” subject, Nelson said that one of the space agency’s remits was to hunt for life outside of Earth, and said that in the past, even the greatest scientists had been disbelieved and ridiculed.
“Remember that one of our missions is to reach out to see if there is life,” he said. “That’s why we’re digging on Mars right now.
“Is there the possibility of life in something as big as the universe? Of course there is the chance that in somewhere as big as that, conditions similar to Earth existed, and some other kind of life form developed.
“Look at what Galileo had to face – the Flat Earth Society – the ones who said everything revolves around the Earth, and he said: ‘No, we revolve around the Sun.’
"And 100 years ago we still only thought there was one galaxy, and then Hubble came along and suddenly said: ‘No there are a bunch of galaxies out there.’"