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The Hynek Classification

The Hynek classification originates from Dr. Joseph Allen Hynek, the astronomer considered the first to have applied a scientific approach to the UFO phenomena. From a vague mass of informations, Hynek applied a classification system to help simplify the job of the ufologist.

By Michele Bugliaro Goggia - last modified: April 12, 2007 1:46 PM

The Hynek classification originates from Dr. Joseph Allen Hynek (1910-1986), the astronomer considered the first to have applied a scientific approach to the UFO phenomena. From a vague mass of informations, Hynek applied a classification system to help simplify the job of the ufologist.

You'll understand then that, when properly studied, 90% of UFO sightings find natural, astronomical or technological explanations the witness could not identify. This does not mean 100% of UFO sightings can be explained the same way. Last but not least, those who sight UFO phenomena are not different from the rest. We are taught there're rational people opposed to gullible ones. This opposition is reflected in ufology being rejected and astronomy being valued: the real problem is to find out why certain people see UFOs, while most scientists mostly never do. Furthermore, believers try to convince everybody that UFO witnesses never read sci-fi, which is wrong. For sceptics, this fact suggested UFO witnesses cannot think as well as a scientist does, though scientists too know or watch sci-fi.

UFO sightings

UFOs have been seen, photographed, filmed by astronauts as by cameramen and all sort of people, in many places like Military bases and in the most fortunate circumstances. The UFO phenomenon is not limited to a certain area nor particular socio-cultural condition. Let's start seeing the Hynek classification:

Aimé Michel, studying the autumn 1954 flap (especially over France), realized if sightings were marked on a geographical map they were aligned along tracks. Short later, Michel found out other tracks, where two tracks crossed "mother ships" were reported. Unfortunately along these tracks there were more phenomena like satellites. Mostly for the French area, some tracks were strongly active, for they crossed areas of strong UFO activity and underground military bases. It seems such bases, from 1954 on, have increased their activity, especially around Toulouse where the CNES (with the SEPRA) is located. So ended the "Michel effect".

It is also very useful to consider the profile of UFO sightings from a research conducted by doctor Claude Poher (CNES) who selected a number of genuine cases for a study of UFO sightings:


Instruments / means used during sighting:

Features of UFOs:

Nighttime UFOs:

Speed of UFOs:

Secondary effects:



Geography of UFOs:

Close encounters of the Ist and of the IInd kind

Close encounters of the first kind: UFO seen from less than 150 meters. Without other effects.

Close encounters of the second kind: UFO seen from less than 150 meters. With physical effects. UFO events are not always mysterious and without physical consequences. That means they are real and not psychological phenomena. For example, traces on the ground, traces on an object or even on a life form. It does offer circumstantial evidences: such kind of cases may produce serious scientific evidence. On February 27, 1954 at Florence, Italy, a white substance fell. Prof. Canneri studied its composition: Boron-Silicon glasses. More evidence was found in 1957 at Ubatuba, Brazil: some material fell on the beach after a mysterious explosion. A journalist, Ibrahim Sued, received a letter containing one sample:

"As a faithful reader of your column and your admirer, I wish to give you something of the highest interest to a newspaper man, about the flying disks. If you believe that they are real, of course. I didn't believe anything said or published about them. But just a few days ago I was forced to change my mind. I was fishing together with some friends, at a place close to the town of Ubatuba, Sao Paulo, when I sighted a flying disk. It approached the beach at an unbelievable speed and an accident, i.e. a crash into the sea seemed imminent.

At the last moment, however, when it was almost striking the waters, it made a sharp turn upward and climbed rapidly on a fantastic impulse. We followed the spectacle with our eyes, startled, when we saw the disk explode in flames. It disintegrated into thousands of fiery fragments, which fell sparkling with magnificent brightness. They looked like fireworks, despite the time of the accident, at noon i.e. midday. Most of these fragments, almost all, fell into the sea.

But a number of small pieces fell close to the beach and we picked up a large amount of this material, which was as light as paper. I am enclosing a small sample of it. I don't know anyone that could be trusted to whom I might send it for analysis. I never read about a flying disc being found, or about fragments or parts of a saucer that had been picked up."

The APRO received 2 pieces for analysis, a third piece was kept by Dr. Olavo Fontes. The first sample was tested at the mineral production labs in the Brazilian agricultural ministry. They applied chemical, spectrographic analysis and X-ray diffusion techniques on the metal. These tests indicated that the material was very pure magnesium. The chemist also noted that the normal trace elements expected in magnesium were all missing. Fontes used up all of his sample in a series of further tests, which included another chemist conducting X-ray investigation at the labs of a geology unit and pieces being taken to the Brazilian Army and Navy research departments. The Army and Navy both kept the results of their findings secret. Later, the APRO sent one piece to the USAF, who claimed the debris was lost by accident. The remaining samples where used with varying results, until the samples became too small to of been any use in tests. APRO still have one small remaining sample in their vaults.

In 1971 at Lille a similar substance fell and it was again studied: the results of the CNRS were Mg and Al, but the isotope percentages were different from the common Earth elements. From 1950 to 1973 other UFOs let a strange white substance fall. When possible, it was studied: 95% organic components and 5% inorganic salts with K, Si, Ca, P.

More recently, on October 12, 2001 over the Roman skies a similar phenomenon happened and it was reported by ufologist Aurelio Nicolazzo: a witness noticed a luminous point in the sky, after 16:00 o'clock. Another witness noticed, more along the zenit at 14:30, the substance falling from the sky. The phenomenon happened even at Grosseto and around Aretino as well. Biologist Giorgio Pattera collected samples and started a scientific enquiry: polyrefractive filaments made of plastic material, maybe polymers. At Arezzo, the ARPAT of Subbiano was charged to study the same evidence.

The Italian CUN studied two more cases of UFO landings near Napoli (Cicciano, 1990; Luogosano, 1989) and found out strong microwaves on the contaminated area. The same results from the SEPRA at Valensole in 1965 and at Soave, Italy, in 1988. In particular at Luogosano, a peculiar element is found out: Yb. This one was found chemically pure and could not come from the area. Being found in parts per million, it was impossible to verify the isotopic purity. It should be noted the only way to purify Yb is through Metal Vapor Synthesis. The metal got hot at high temperature in the vacuum and a part of it sublimed, leaving other inpurities attached on the flying machine from which it was coming out.

Close encounters of the IIIrd and of the IVth kind

Close encounters of the third kind: near the landed UFO, seen from less than 150 meters, there are one or more humanoids or robots. "Humanoid" is a word to describe a life form that shares some features in common with Homo sapiens (body, legs, arms, head). Usually they avoid interactions with humans, sometimes they seem hostile.

Close encounters of the fourth kind: abduction cases: subjects are taken by EBEs for examinations and tests. Though very popular, it's not as widespread as some think. Also, there are psychological explanations for every single symptom described by ufologists. The problem, eventually, comes when a subject reports all these symptoms.

external links



Aimé MIchel at RR0

Ubatuba at Wikipedia

Ubatuba UFO crach, Brazil

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