The warning came in the form of a yet-to-be-peer-reviewed draft research paper authored by Sean Kirkpatrick, director of the DoD's All-Domain Anomaly Resolution Office (AARO), and Harvard University Department of Astronomy Chair Abraham Loeb.
"An artificial interstellar object could potentially be a parent craft that releases many small probes during its close passage to Earth, an operational construct not too dissimilar from NASA missions," Kirkpatrick wrote in the report. It also mentioned that these objects – called "dandelion seeds" – could be separated from the parent craft by the tidal gravitational force of the sun or by a maneuvering capability.
With proper design, these probes "would reach the Earth or other solar system planets for exploration, as the parent craft passes by within a fraction of the Earth-sun separation." Moreover, "astronomers would not be able to notice the spray of mini probes because they do not reflect enough sunlight for existing survey telescopes to notice them."
The report by Loeb and Kirkpatrick also recounted the October 2017 sighting of the Oumuamua object by one of NASA's two Pan-STARRS telescopes. The object named after the Hawaiian word for "scout" was shaped like a cigar and propelled itself away from the sun without showing a cometary tail.
On October 19, 2017, the said telescope detected an unusual object that was later named 'Oumuamua,' but many scientists thought it was artificial as the object was cigar-shaped, appeared flat and was propelled away from the sun without showing a cometary tail.
The paper came a month after intense scrutiny of unidentified flying objects (UFOs) that were ignited when a Chinese spy balloon was spotted drifting across U.S. airspace. While the said balloon was later shot down, three additional UFOs were also spotted. (Related: "Spy balloons" are part of global Chinese surveillance, US military and national security officials say.)
Established in July 2022, the AARO is responsible for tracking unidentified objects on land, sea and air. It is also in charge of tracking an object that can move from one domain to the next.
Several senators, including Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), believe in the office's vital role in national and global security. The two senators and 12 of their colleagues sent a Feb. 16 letter calling for AARO's full funding. The said correspondence was addressed to Kathleen Hicks, deputy defense secretary and Stacey Dixon, principal deputy director of national intelligence.
"AARO provides the opportunity to integrate and resolve threats and hazards to the U.S., while also offering increased transparency to the American people and reducing the stigma," the bipartisan group of 14 senators stated in the letter. "AARO's success will depend on robust funding for its activities and cooperation between the [DoD] and the intelligence community."
The group added that the amount outlined in the classified attachment is crucial to AARO's scientific plan, and the lack of funding for these capabilities presents a serious impediment to the office's mission.
One source close to AARO disclosed that "until recently, [it] had three full-time staff" at its Crystal City, Virginia office. Another source revealed that the AARO's office had mostly empty desks and only had about four to six people around – including Kirkpatrick himself and his deputy.
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Watch this video that discusses the UFO parent craft spotted by the DoD.
This video is from the Tommy's Podcast channel on Brighteon.com.