CNES projects library
On a summer’s night, you see strange lights moving in the sky. While there most likely is a rational explanation for what you are seeing (satellites, lanterns, aircraft lights, etc.), you can report your sighting to GEIPAN if you wish. Based in Toulouse, this body has several distinct missions. First, it collects eyewitness accounts about unidentified aerospace phenomena (UAP), usually gleaned from statements recorded by the gendarmerie, civil aviation or other authorities. It then analyses the information in these statements with a view to refining the scientific explanations likely to explain reported phenomena. This phase may entail investigations in the field to complement eyewitness accounts. Once analysed, accounts and their scientific explanations are archived. Lastly, GEIPAN also informs the public about its work and results through its website at http://www.cnes-geipan.fr.
Created by CNES in 2005, GEIPAN replaced SEPRA, the permanent unit at CNES responsible for routine monitoring of orbital debris and risk objects, which in 1988 itself succeeded GEPAN, its forerunner founded in 1977. Currently headed by Xavier Passot, an engineer with CNES since 1983, GEIPAN is overseen by COPEIPAN, a steering committee comprising representatives from the civil and military authorities (police and air force) and the scientific community.