Thornton Leigh Page

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Thornton Leigh Page
Thornton Leigh Page.jpg
Born(1913-08-13)13 August 1913 [1]
Died2 January 1996(1996-01-02) (aged 82)
Spouse(s)
    Helen Ashbee
    (m. 1938;div. 1945)
    [1]
      Lou Williams
      (m. 1948)
      [1]
ChildrenTanya (with Helen) [1]
Mary Anne and Leigh II (with Lou) [1]
Parent(s)Leigh and Mary Page
Alma mater Yale (B.S.)
Oxford (D.Phil.)
AwardsRhodes scholar
Fellow, Royal Astronomical Society
Scientific career
Thesis  (1938)
Doctoral advisor Harry H. Plaskett
Edward A. Milne [1]
Military career
AllegianceFlag of the United States.svg United States of America
Service/branchFlag of the United States Navy (official).svg  United States Navy
Years of service1942-1946
Rank US-O4 insignia.svg Lt. Commander
Battles/wars World War II

Thornton Leigh Page was an American professor of astronomy at the University of Chicago and at Wesleyan University. He became embroiled in the controversy over unidentified flying objects (UFOs) after serving briefly on the Robertson Panel, a Central Intelligence Agency–sponsored committee of scientists assembled in Washington, D.C. from 14–18 January 1953 to study the available evidence on UFOs. [2] [3]

Contents

Early life

Thornton Page was born in New Haven, CT on 13 August 1913 to Leigh Page, a physics instructor at Yale University, and Mary Page, trained as a nurse. [1] He went on to receive a B.S. in physics from Yale in 1934, and was named a Rhodes Scholar, [4] later earning a D.Phil. from Oxford University in 1938. [1]

Military career

During World War II, he served in the Pacific Theater with the minelaying operations research group, serving in Guan, Tinian, and at sea. He was in Tokyo for the Japanese surrender, and had reported on the atomic tests at Bikini. [1]

Professional career

After his WWII service, Thornton Page served as a professor of astrophysics for the University of Chicago from 1946 until 1950. [5] He then worked for the U.S. Army's Operations Research Office (ORO) from 1951 until 1958. [5] In 1952, Thornton Page became the first editor of Journal of the Operations Research Society of America. [6] As an astronomer for the ORO, he became embroiled in the controversy involving Unidentified Flying Objects in 1953. [7]

In 1958, he became a professor and head of the astronomy department at Wesleyan University. [1] He resigned from Wesleyan in 1971 and began working for the United States Naval Research Laboratory until his retirement in 1976. [8] He was elected to the 2002 class of Fellows of the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences. [9]

Personal life

In late 1961, he was seriously injured in an automobile accident where he broke several bones and lost sight in one eye. [8] He died in Houston on 2 January 1996. [8]

Related Research Articles

Unidentified flying object Unusual phenomenon in the sky that is not readily identifiable

An unidentified flying object (UFO) is any perceived aerial phenomenon that cannot be immediately identified or explained. On investigation, most UFOs are identified as known objects or atmospheric phenomena, while a small number remain unexplained.

UFO conspiracy theories Conspiracy theories relating to UFOs or extraterrestrials

UFO conspiracy theories are a subset of conspiracy theories which argue that various governments and politicians globally, in particular the Government of the United States, are suppressing evidence that unidentified flying objects are controlled by a non-human intelligence or built using alien technology. Such conspiracy theories usually argue that Earth governments are in communication or cooperation with extraterrestrial visitors despite public disclaimers, and further that some of these theories claim that the governments are explicitly allowing alien abduction.

Ufology Study of UFOs

Ufology is the investigation of unidentified flying objects (UFOs) by people who believe that they may be of extraordinary origins. While there are instances of government, private, and fringe science investigations of UFOs, ufology is generally regarded by skeptics and science educators as a canonical example of pseudoscience.

Project Blue Book was the code name for the systematic study of unidentified flying objects by the United States Air Force from March 1952 to its termination on December 17, 1969. The project, headquartered at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, was initially directed by Captain Edward J. Ruppelt and followed projects of a similar nature such as Project Sign established in 1947, and Project Grudge in 1948. Project Blue Book had two goals, namely, to determine if UFOs were a threat to national security, and to scientifically analyze UFO-related data.

Extraterrestrial hypothesis Hypothesis that some unidentified flying objects are occupied by extraterrestrial life

The extraterrestrial hypothesis (ETH) proposes that some unidentified flying objects (UFOs) are best explained as being physical spacecraft occupied by extraterrestrial life or non-human aliens, or non-occupied alien probes from other planets visiting Earth.

J. Allen Hynek American astronomer and ufologist (1910–1986)

Josef Allen Hynek was an American astronomer, professor, and ufologist. He is perhaps best remembered for his UFO research. Hynek acted as scientific advisor to UFO studies undertaken by the U.S. Air Force under three projects: Project Sign (1947–1949), Project Grudge (1949–1951) and Project Blue Book (1952–1969).

Stanton T. Friedman

Stanton Terry Friedman was a nuclear physicist and professional ufologist who resided in Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada. He was the original civilian investigator of the Roswell UFO incident.

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Robertson Panel

The Robertson Panel was a scientific committee which met in January 1953 headed by Howard P. Robertson. The Panel arose from a recommendation to the Intelligence Advisory Committee (IAC) in December 1952 from a Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) review of the U.S. Air Force investigation into unidentified flying objects, Project Blue Book. The CIA review itself was in response to widespread reports of unidentified flying objects, especially in the Washington, D.C. area during the summer of 1952.

Edward James Ruppelt was a United States Air Force officer probably best known for his involvement in Project Blue Book, a formal governmental study of unidentified flying objects. He is generally credited with coining the term "unidentified flying object", to replace the terms "flying saucer" and "flying disk" - which had become widely known - because the military thought them to be "misleading when applied to objects of every conceivable shape and performance. For this reason the military prefers the more general, if less colorful, name: unidentified flying objects. UFO for short."

James E. McDonald

James Edward McDonald was an American physicist. He is best known for his research regarding UFOs. McDonald was a senior physicist at the Institute for Atmospheric Physics and a professor of meteorology at the University of Arizona in Tucson.

Morris Ketchum Jessup was an American ufologist. He had a Master of Science Degree in astronomy and, though employed for most of his life as an automobile-parts salesman and a photographer, is probably best remembered for his writings on UFOs.

Condon Committee

The Condon Committee was the informal name of the University of Colorado UFO Project, a group funded by the United States Air Force from 1966 to 1968 at the University of Colorado to study unidentified flying objects under the direction of physicist Edward Condon. The result of its work, formally titled Scientific Study of Unidentified Flying Objects, and known as the Condon Report, appeared in 1968.

The Mariana UFO Incident occurred in August 1950 in Great Falls, Montana. The film footage of the sighting is believed to be among the first ever taken of what came to be called an unidentified flying object. The footage was investigated by the U.S. Air Force, and found to be reflections from two F-94 jet fighters.

Identifying unidentified flying objects is a difficult task due to the normally poor quality of the evidence provided by those who report sighting the unknown object. Observations and subsequent reporting are often made by those untrained in astronomy, atmospheric phenomena, aeronautics, physics, and perception. Nevertheless, most officially investigated UFO sightings, such as from the U.S. Air Force's Project Blue Book, have been identified as being due to honest misidentifications of natural phenomena, aircraft, or other prosaic explanations. In early U.S. Air Force attempts to explain UFO sightings, unexplained sightings routinely numbered over one in five reports. However, in early 1953, right after the CIA's Robertson Panel, percentages of unexplained sightings dropped precipitously, usually being only a few percent in any given year. When Project Blue Book closed down in 1970, only 6% of all cases were classified as being truly unidentified.

This is a list of alleged sightings of unidentified flying objects or UFOs in Brazil.

1952 Washington, D.C., UFO incident

The 1952 Washington, D.C. UFO incident, also known as the Washington flap, the Washington National Airport Sightings, or the Invasion of Washington, was a series of unidentified flying object reports from July 12 to July 29, 1952, over Washington, D.C. The most publicized sightings took place on consecutive weekends, July 19–20 and July 26–27. UFO historian Curtis Peebles called the incident "the climax of the 1952 (UFO) flap" - "Never before or after did Project Blue Book and the Air Force undergo such a tidal wave of (UFO) reports."

Brian OBrien Optical physicist

Brian O'Brien was an optical physicist and "the founder of the Air Force Studies Board and its chairman for 12 years. O'Brien received numerous awards, including the Medal for Merit, the nation's highest civilian award, for his work on optics in World War II and the Frederic Ives Medal in 1951. Circa 1966 he "chaired an ad hoc committee under the USAF Science Advisory Board (AFSAB) looking into the UFO problem". He also had steering power over National Academy of Sciences (NAS) projects, Project Blue Book, and helped pave the way for the Condon Committee.

The Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program (AATIP) was an unclassified but unpublicized investigatory effort funded by the United States Government to study unidentified flying objects (UFOs) or unexplained aerial phenomena (UAP). The program was first made public on December 16, 2017. The program began in 2007, with funding of $22 million over the five years until the available appropriations were ended in 2012. The program began in the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency.

References

  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Osterbrock, Donald E. (August 1996). "Obituary: Thornton L. Page, 1913-1996". Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society. 28 (4): 1461–1462. Bibcode:1996BAAS...28.1461O.
  2. Shrader, Charles R. (2006). History of Operations Research in the United States Army (PDF). CMH Publication 70-102-1. Washington, DC: Center for Military History. p. 97. ISBN   978-0-16-072961-4.
  3. Robertson Panel (redacted 28 November 1994 FOIA) (18 January 1954). "Report Of Scientific Advisory Panel On Unidentified Flying Objects Convened By Office Of Scientific Intelligence, CIA". Washington, DC. Retrieved 11 August 2016.{{cite journal}}: Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  4. Schaeper, Thomas J.; Schaeper, Kathleen (2010). Rhodes Scholars, Oxford, and the Creation of an American Elite. New York, NY: Berghahn Books. p. 371. ISBN   978-1-84545-721-1.
  5. 1 2 Shrader 2006, pp. 125.
  6. Shrader 2006, pp. 107.
  7. Shrader 2006, pp. 97.
  8. 1 2 3 "Thornton L. Page Papers, 1936-1983". Special Collections, Virginia Tech. 2013. Retrieved 11 August 2016.
  9. Fellows: Alphabetical List, Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences , retrieved 2019-10-09