Wednesday, April 17, 2024 at 7:30 PM


Are We Really Alone?

The Search Has Only Begun!

Walt presented to a packed audience at the observatory as well as to online Zoom viewers. The video of his talk will be online soon in our Lecture Series Video Library.

This presentation will be live at Martz-Kohl Observatory and available online via Zoom. You are encouraged to come to the observatory to meet Walt Pickut and the rest of the astronomy team at MKO, and join in what could be a lively Q&A after his talk. Tours will follow. Dress appropriately for the weather as if you were outside. While the classroom is heated, the domes are not. If the weather permits, there will be public viewing opportunities.

The search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI) continues with new investigative tools deployed both here on Earth and out in deep space. Unidentified Flying Objects (UFOs) are no more; we now have Unidentified Anomalous Phenomena (UAP). Walt Pickut is a scientific author and the author of the true story book, “The First Counterspy.” He is a long-term member of the Martz-Kohl Observatory and the perfect person to present recent factual findings as well as a bit of speculation. Walt says, “the answer is still out there!”

The latest Pentagon report on Unidentified Anomalous Phenomena was published in January 2024. NASA also had a public meeting last year on the subject. The Department of Defense’s All-domain Anomaly Resolution Office (AARO) reviewed sightings dating back 75+ years. While they found no verifiable evidence that any UAP sighting represented alien technology, the Pentagon report acknowledges the need for further investigation. About 2% of the observation database still remains mysterious. Walt will present short outtakes of the Pentagon and NASA reports with his own “spin” and the nature of real scientific evidence.

SETI research is entering a new era with increased data analysis power, open source platforms for citizen science, and new equipment on Earth and in space that are examining more than just radio waves. The power of Artificial Intelligence, in the form of machine learning is being applied and refined. Walt will talk about new advances and show clips of actual SETI researchers describing their work.

As part of Walt’s presentation, there will be a fun audience participation portion where Drake’s equation for estimating the possibility of intelligent life in our galaxy will be run in real time. Various factors, that need to be deduced or estimated, affect the outcome’s (intelligent life) probability. These factors will be solicited from the audience.

Walter W. Pickut is a freelance writer, author, and past editor and investigative reporter at the Jamestown Gazette. He has earned BS degrees in biology and in communication, an MS degree in human physiology from Fairleigh-Dickenson University in NJ, and graduate training in mass communication at SUNY Buffalo. Walt finds the investigation of SETI and the UFO/UAP phenomenon fascinating. Walt is also a board member of the Marshal Martz Memorial Astronomical Association Inc. (MMMAA), which operates the Martz-Kohl Observatory.


Zoom Meeting

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Time: April 17, 2024 at 7:30 PM, Eastern Time

Topic: Are We Really Alone?
Meeting ID:  830 5504 4838
Passcode: program

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