Keywords and introduction

Vallée, JacquesVallee, Jacques: Journal of Scientific Exploration, vol. 12, n° 3, September 1998


UFOs -- UFO sightings -- physical evidence -- propulsion


The combination of a reliable sighting of an unexplained aerial object with the recovery of a durable physical specimen is rare. While the media often allude to sensational finds and at least one former military intelligence officer has stated that he once had custody of advanced technology coming from a "crash" (Corso, 1997), the material is not available for independent study and the details of its composition are scanty and contradictory.

At a more modest level, in the course of their investigations of the phenomenon around the world, civilian researchers acting privately have patiently assembled the embryo of a sample collection, starting from physical specimens reportedly gathered at the site of a close encounter or "maneuver" type sighting.2

The present paper summarizes the data, stressing methodology while refraining from proposing premature explanations for the origin of the samples. We strive to find those cases where :

  1. the literature gives sufficient ground to support the fact that an unusual aerial phenomenon occurred,
  2. the circumstances of the actual recovery of the specimen are reported,
  3. there is data to suggest that the specimen is in fact linked to the observed aerial object, and
  4. physical analysis has been performed by a competent laboratory of known reliability. In several cases the sample is available for continuing study by independent scientists. In the present paper we will try to establish the frequency of such cases and the type of analysis they suggest. In conclusion we will examine hypotheses that may deserve further testing.