(TheLastPatriotNews.com) – A surge of UFO sightings over North America, which has emerged after the US Air Force recently shot down a Chinese spy balloon and three other objects, is explained by the media hype on the matter, according to a report.
The spate of UFO spotting cases in recent days has led some to wonder whether the planet may be getting invaded by aliens, although the reality is far more mundane, The New York Post writes.
It quotes experts as saying that thousands of objects typically float in the skies, but now they are making an impression on more people due to the publicizing of the recent sightings.
“At any given moment, thousands of balloons” float in the air, Paul Fetkowitz, president of Florida-based high-altitude balloon maker Kaymont Consolidated Industries, told The New York Times.
He noted that those flying objects would typically be sent aloft by the US military, government, and private entities.
“For years, you didn’t hear anything about balloons. Now, we’re on the lookout for any kind of flying object,” commented Terry Deshler, a University of Wyoming professor of atmospheric science.
The US government is confident that a Chinese surveillance airship was the first of the four objects shot down recently. However, the other three objects – downed over Alaska, Canada’s Yukon territory, and Lake Huron, respectively – have not been connected with China, other foreign countries, or extraterrestrials.
That is despite the fact that on Sunday, US Air Force Gen. Glen VanHerck, who heads both NORAD (the North American Aerospace Defense Command) and NORTHCOM (the Northern Command), sensationally said he wouldn’t rule out any possibility about the objects’ origins, including alien life.
After the incident with the Chinese spy balloon, the US authorities have taken to enhancing America’s radars and atmospheric trackers for better airspace monitoring. However, according to experts, this could lead to many false alarms.
Besides that possibility, the psychological phenomenon called the “frequency illusion” could also be playing a role in the surge in UFO sightings. A cognitive bias leads people to notice certain things more after learning about them for the first time.
The report notes that in the past few years, the US Department of Defense has taken new steps to investigate military sightings of UFOs, or UAPs (“unidentified aerial phenomena”), as it now calls them.
Last summer, the department set up the All-Domain Anomaly Resolution Office, which probed 366 UAP reports and concluded that over half of those were balloons, drones, birds, or aerial clutter – though 171 sightings remained unexplained.
The NYT notes that every year, the National Weather Service sets off some 60,000 balloons which can reach an altitude of 20 miles.
Those are designed to burst and break into particles, but some may be under-inflated and thus never reach the needed altitude for disintegration. That way, they remain floating in the skies.
“A balloon launched in Denver might land in New Jersey,” Fetkowitz said.
Over the years, NASA, which has its balloon program out of Texas, has launched over 1,700 balloons on scientific missions, some carrying payloads of up to 4 tons.
The report concludes that some recent surges in UFO or UAP sightings may be due to the US government’s efforts to publicly “destigmatize the topic” and recognize the risks from such flying objects.