A new paper co-authored by a Harvard University professor and a top official at the Pentagon suggests we may not have to look far for extraterrestrial life. 

Harvard’s Head of Astronomy Avi Loeb partnered with the Pentagon to do research on UFOs. The theory has drawn skepticism. Speaking this week, though, Loeb said it’s possible we could have contact with some form of extraterrestrial life within our lifetime. 

“We just need to look up and collect that data and figure out what is going on in our cosmic neighborhood,” Loeb said. 

The new paper by Loeb and his Pentagon counterpart suggests aliens may have already sent probes to earth that haven’t been spotted. 

Loeb spoke with 7NEWS about the paper, saying he believes that, if there are visitors from beyond, they’re something we can detect. 

“Even if there are extraterrestrial civilizations, they share the reality that we have,” he said. “Therefore, whatever they sent in our direction should obey the laws of physics.” 

Loeb said part of the reason we haven’t been able to accurately identify possible alien encounters is that our scientific instruments might not be sensitive enough to get the full picture. 

Given the time it takes to cross the outer reaches of space, Loeb also said anything that may find us would have been sent long ago without humans in mind. 

“I really want to know if there is another civilization out there that may have sent probes in our direction,” Loeb said. 

“If the cosmic play started long before we came to exist and we are not at the center of the stage, the play is not about us,” he continued. 

Loeb said connecting with other space explorers can only broaden our horizons and move the human race forward. 

“It will change our aspirations for the future once we find a partner,” he said. “So, let’s get on the interstellar dating scene and find someone.” 

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