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A team of 16 experts and scientists assembled by NASA aims to publish its first report on unidentified anomalous phenomena, also known as unidentified flying objects, or UFOS, by midsummer.

“Unidentified anomalous phenomena has truly captured the attention of the public, of the scientific community and nowadays, the US government as well, and we at NASA strongly believe that it’s our responsibility all working together to investigate these with the scientific scrutiny that NASA is well known for,” said Dan Evans, assistant deputy associate administrator for research, NASA’s Science Mission Directorate.

“We’ve tasked (the team) with helping NASA produce a roadmap, a roadmap that doesn’t necessarily look back at previous grainy footage, sort of acknowledges that many UAPs historically we’ll never be able to get to the bottom because the data are of such poor quality,” Evans said on Wednesday.

“We’re trying to assess whether those phenomena pose any risks to safety and we’re doing it using science,” Evans added. “NASA believes that the tools of science apply to the study (of) UAP because they allow us to separate fact from fiction. And that’s all part of NASA’s commitment to exploring the unknown, and doing so with the openness, transparency and candor that we’re well accustomed to providing the public.”

The comments came during a Wednesday news conference after NASA held an hours-long public meeting led by its independent study team that is categorizing and evaluating data of unidentified anomalous phenomena.

Unidentified anomalous phenomena, or UAP, “are events in the sky that cannot be identified as aircraft or known natural phenomena from a scientific perspective,” according to NASA.

The term UAP, originally meaning unidentified aerial phenomena, was changed by the National Defense Authorization Act, which was signed into law in December, Evans said. The change occurred in recognition of the fact that the search for UAP should include near space and undersea phenomena as well, he said.

The space agency has already noted that the limited number of observations of UAPs has made it difficult to draw scientific conclusions about the nature of such events.

“The report will inform NASA on what possible data could be collected in the future to shed light on the nature and origin of UAP,” according to the agency.

The nine-month study began on October 24, 2022, and the team — having held final deliberations Wednesday — will publish a report by the end of July.

The agency’s in