Nasa speaks out over 'Anonymous' video claiming it is about to reveal alien discovery

Andrew Griffin
Tuesday 27 June 2017 09:01
Anonymous says Nasa is on the verge of announcing alien life

Nasa isn't about to announce it has made contact with aliens, despite a hugely viral video, the agency has confirmed.

The video – posted on an account associated with the hacking collective Anonymous – had claimed that Nasa was "on the verge" of making a new announcement on the discovery of alien life. The long and sometimes rambling footage used a range of evidence to suggest that the agency had discovered something that it would be making public soon.

But Nasa has now confirmed that, as thought, there's no new evidence of alien life. At least according to senior scientist Thomas Zurbuchen, upon whose comments much of the video was based.

"Contrary to some reports, there’s no pending announcement from NASA regarding extraterrestrial life," Dr Zurbuchen wrote on Twitter.

"Are we alone in the universe? While we do not know yet, we have missions moving forward that may help answer that fundamental question."

It was actually those missions that the quotes used in the video from Dr Zurbruchen, who is associate administrator at NASA's Science Mission Directorate, were referencing. They came from a testimony he gave in April to the US science and technology committee.

In the speech he summarised Nasa's work on astrobiology, including recent and future missions. All of those added up to make him believe that Nasa could soon find something more significant than perhaps anything before, he said.

"With all of this activity related to the search for life, in so many different areas, we are on the verge of one of the most profound discoveries, ever," he said. "And as we know from experience, NASA’s scientific discoveries of today continually drive impactful research for tomorrow that goes far beyond the initial observations."

But his comment about being on the verge of a new discovery was set in a different context than the video may make it seem. Even in the same speech he made clear that Nasa hadn't "found definitive signs of life elsewhere just yet".

Instead, his comment was in the context of ongoing work to find those signs, and an expression of the fact that he believed such work could soon yield results.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in