Evanston astronomer weighs in on UFO videos: 'I haven't seen anything unusual'

The Pentagon is under deadline to release a report to Congress about UFOs.

Last year, the Senate Intelligence Committee ordered senior national intelligence officials to prepare a comprehensive report on the U.S. Government's investigations into UFOs. As the deadline on that report draws closer and closer, a report on CBS' '60 Minutes' is also getting a lot of buzz after former military personnel gave eye-witness accounts of UFO sightings off the East Coast.

"A lot of people think astronomers, scientists, they just don't want to believe in these things," said Dr. Mark Hammergren, an Evanston-based astronomer. "Excuse me! Who in the world would more want to believe that travel between the stars is possible than astronomers? I would love to believe in these things."

Unfortunately, the eyewitness accounts of Unidentified Aerial Phenomena, or UAPs, which aired Sunday weren't enough to convince Hammergren they weren't man-made.

"I'm not saying that these are bad observers, not by any means," he said. "[But] we don't have these good data readouts like in a computer game or something."


Former Navy pilots told '60 Minutes' the sightings happened almost daily, and the objects' movements seemed to defy gravity.

However, Hammergren says grainy video and witness accounts don't constitute hard data.

"I haven't seen anything unusual in any of the videos. Nothing that was moving in a way that a human-made aircraft couldn't move."

Former President Barack Obama was just asked about the report on the 'Late Late Show with James Corden.' Obama said he was told "no" when he asked about the existence of extra-terrestrial specimens in government custody. But he did acknowledge both footage and records of unexplained objects in the skies.

"We can't explain how they moved, their trajectory, they did not have an easily explainable pattern," Obama said.

Despite his skepticism about UAPs being extra-terrestrial, Hammergen says he expects the Mars rover to bring back evidence of past micro-bacterial life on Mars and is looking forward to the release of the government report in the coming weeks.