Scientists on Wednesday gathered to offer answers on UFO sightings.

Independent scientists discussed their findings on unidentified flying objects at the first Unidentified Anomalous Phenomena (UAP) meeting on May 31. This group of scientists gathered to discuss their results on public sightings of unidentified flying objects, now classified as UAPs.

NASA defines a UAP occurrence as “observations of events in the sky that cannot be identified as aircraft or as known natural phenomena.”

NASA officials assembled these 16 scientists in a study team to observe reports of anomalous aircraft in October 2022. The scientific team participated in a nine-month study and analyzed primarily unclassified data, such as commercially available data, data gathered from citizen government organizations, and other sources.

“We steer between the rocks and the cyclone,” said panel chairman David Spergel. “We have a community of people who are completely convinced of the existence of UFOs. And we have a community of people who think addressing this question is ridiculous, everything can be explained.”

Following the months of study, the NASA team then recommended a plan of action for the analysis of future UAPs. The scientists observed about 800 occurrences of these anomalies and ruled that there was no evidence of extraterrestrial involvement in any of the cases that they analyzed.

Some cases were explained as regular commercial aircraft or even optical illusions created by microwaves, but others remained unexplained. Sean Kirkpatrick, director of the All-domain Anomaly Resolution Office (AARO), explained that his office received between 50 to 100 new monthly reports but that only 2% and 5% were genuinely anomalous and could not be explained.

The scientists also reported that they had faced a great deal of harassment since the group’s creation from individuals who attributed these unidentified crafts to unexplained events and those who said that their efforts were pointless. Panel members reported that another purpose of this panel was to encourage witnesses of these events, such as aircraft pilots, to share information without the threat of ridicule.

Nicola Fox, an associate administrator for NASA, denounced instances of harassment.

“NASA stands behind our panelists and we do not tolerate abuse,” said Fox. “Harassment only leads to further stigmatization of the UAP field, significantly hindering the scientific progress and discouraging others to study this important subject matter. Your harassment also obstructs the public’s right to knowledge.”

Spergel said that the stigmatization of these occurrences is why some data has not been reported, and the NASA team’s investigation revealed a need for high-quality data. Data gathered by the team has not allowed the group to come up with any conclusions about these sightings.

The team is expected to publish a full report later this summer.