Unidentified Aerial Phenomena (UAP)

Apparently the term "UFO" is out; in its place, "UAP," for "Unidentified Aerial Phenomena," is gaining popularity.

Jon Hilkevitch of the Chicago Tribune says:

The Unidentified Aerial Phenomena (the term that extraterrestrial-watchers nowadays prefer over Unidentified Flying Object) was first seen by a United ramp worker[....]

--"In the sky! A bird? A plane? A ... UFO?", by Jon Hilkevitch

But other sources suggest that the "UAP" term is actually an older term, and TSOR hasn't led me to anything definitive one way or t'other. Any thoughts?

4 Responses to “Unidentified Aerial Phenomena (UAP)”

  1. Fred

    Hmm. I think the article-writer misuses the term; phenomena is plural; he wants phenomenon.

  2. sam

    I see it used in a New York Times article from 8/1/1952, p. 19, “‘Flying Saucer’ Queries Hamper Air Force Work”. And then another the very next day, p. 3, which even has a photo released by the US Coast Guard of “flying saucers”. The only other NYT reference is 1/17/1967, p. 5, which talks about UFO hoaxes. All of the references to UAPs are related to the military so it’s probably a military term dating back even further than the early 1950s.

    There’s another article in the Chicago Tribune, 2/5/1959, p. W3, “Five Riverside PTA’s to Hear Talk on Space”. No military references here.

  3. Jed

    Sorry, I should’ve been clearer in my question. I knew that “UAP” had been used a while back; what I wasn’t sure about was whether the article’s claim that it’s the newly-in-vogue term of choice among aficionados was accurate or not.

    But thanks for the citations! Good to see.

  4. Homens e mulheres

    UAP sounds more scientific to me.


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