An Interview with retired NASA scientist-astronaut Dr. Brian O’Leary

Discussing UFOs, The Face on Mars, Free Energy, Ancient Wisdom, and Saving the Earth!

by Brent Raynes

Over the past twenty years, Dr. O'Leary has researched, lectured and written extensively about new paradigms of science and global transformation. His most recent book Re-Inheriting the Earth describes how we can lift ourselves out of our current path of global destruction. Much of his work is based on extensive international travels to some of the best and brightest researchers of new science, new medicine and "free" energy.

Dr. O'Leary has published internationally ten trade books on the frontiers of science, space, energy and culture, with sales averaging over 10,000 copies per book. He was a NASA scientist-astronaut, assistant professor of astronomy at Cornell University alongside Carl Sagan, and has also taught Physics for Poets and Princeton University and technology assessment at the University of California Berkeley School of Law and Hampshire College. He has published over 100 technical papers in the peer reviewed scientific literature and another 100 popular magazine and Op-Ed pieces worldwide. He has appeared frequently on American national television and radio, including the Today Show, Larry King Live, the Donahue Show, Fox Television and the Art Bell Show.

To learn more about Dr. O’Leary’s numerous achievements and current activities, and about his wonderful home/retreat in Ecuador (complete with many beautiful pictures) visit his website at:

Editor: I noted on your website that you mentioned that you have an observation deck or something where people could come say on a retreat and watch for UFOs if they wanted to. Have you had sightings there in Ecuador from where you live?

Dr. Brian O’Leary: Yes, there have been several where we are, but they come in waves. The first year that we were here there were quite a few sightings. I saw one once and I photographed what looked like orbs, but the evidence is very, very flimsy so I wouldn’t want to pin my star on it. But at any rate, many, many people have sighted many, many phenomena and lots of UFO activity here. In the last year or two, there hasn’t been any and I think that might be because the population is expanding. There’s a lot of environmental damage going on here as well as everywhere, so it’s hard to say why the wave has stopped but it has stopped for now anyway.

But at any rate, obviously all over the world the UFO phenomenon is very real and the truth embargo needs to stop. Let’s get on with what realities are out there. That’s my opinion anyway.

Editor: Were you always, even as an astronaut, a believer in UFOs, or did this come later?

Dr. Brian O’Leary: It came later. I was on the faculty in the physics department at Princeton and at that point I was still very much kind of imprisoned in the mainstream scientific community and it was kind of a no no to talk about UFOs then. So I didn’t even address the question until, I think it was around 1985 I guess when I really started to look at it seriously and do my own research. I came up with a conclusion that indeed culturally inquiry into this phenomenon has been put into a box with imposed boundaries, and we need to now expand our knowledge base. And we need to prepare for what we need to do to save our planet from almost sheer disaster due to human intervention. So I think that the UFO phenomenon is a very important aspect of that quest. That is, the quest for the truth, the quest for a fuller understanding of our place in the universe, where we ask ourselves: What can we do to develop clean energy, for example. These are all pressing questions which we need to face now.

Editor: Right, you’ve written a book recently entitled ReInheriting The Earth.

Dr. Brian O’Leary: Yes, ReInheriting The Earth was my most recent book. It came out in 2003 and it basically addresses the biggest questions that we face on the planet. Obviously we have huge problems and more and more people are awakening to not only the problems but the pressing need for a solution, so I’ve studied free energy. Whether you call it zero point energy or vacuum energy, there are many different synonyms for free energy. This is energy basically from the vacuum of space, or you could also manipulate hydrogen and water and heavy water in various ways so as to create whole new hydrogen chemistries, and also the possibility of clean nuclear reactions in a cold fusion experiment. So many of these things are now much further along than most people would think and it’s like the UFO phenomenon where there’s been a concerted effort to cover up the information and not make it possible for the public to know about this.

So this is part of the battle that we’re fighting now, to step outside of the box of normal cultural limitations and purely understand the problems of what they are. They’re huge. Global warming, climate change, global cooling, and all of these human interventions that are causing chaos in our environment. These need to be reversed very quickly and so now we need to think big about solutions, to have an Apollo program for clean breakthrough energy and to look at innovative ways of purifying and conserving our water systems on the planet. We must stop the use of fossil fuels and stop wars. All of these things have to be done in order for us to survive this next period.

Editor: Right. We’re reaching a critical point because the human population on the planet is now over six billion people and we have so many problems with pollution and I guess eventually we will run out of gas. We’ve got to find alternatives.

What brought you around to noticing all of this and being aware and wanting to do something about these issues? Was there a turning point for you?

Dr. Brian O’Leary: It came along gradually. I started really thinking about it in the late 1960s and early 1970s, and at that time I was a specialist studying the planet Mars. NASA had appointed me to be the first to go to Mars back in 1967 until the program was cancelled in 1968 by Lyndon Johnson because of the Vietnam War. So around that point I started to think deeper and that maybe we needed to look at the earth too and that if I can’t go to Mars maybe I can go to the earth, to our precious home where we live. So I think that’s about when I turned it all around, in 1968. Then in the early 1970s I got more and more interested in the fact that there were many scientific projects or technological endeavors, especially by the Department of Defense, and what is now the Department of Energy, that were environmentally unsound. So I got involved in issues like nuclear power and its many dangers. In the ‘70s I was an advisor to Morris Udall who ran for President in 1975 on an environmental ticket and then I worked for Congress for awhile. So during the ‘70s I really awakened and kind of joined the environmental movement and at that time the environmental movement was very robust, very strong. Then when Ronald Reagan was elected President in 1980, the environmental movement suddenly kind of shut down, and it was around then that I was looking for outside the box solutions, things that traditional science doesn’t have the courage to look at, and I was very pleasantly surprised to find that there were many things.

There was free energy. Regardless of all of the violence, threats, and tragic outcomes of many of the inventions during the 20th Century and right into this century, there has still been significant progress. We need to make a political paradigm shift and assert our understanding of these phenomena, developing these things as options for our future, so that in our future we can have responsible leadership. Some of us are meeting to discuss many of these pressing questions about how we can save the earth.

It’s interesting because I started my whole life and career interested in Mars and then in the second half of my life and career I am interested in the earth.

Editor: Was Nikola Tesla kind of the prophet of trying to unravel free energy?

Dr. Brian O’Leary: He is certainly the most prominent historical character but actually there have been many, many people who have worked with free energy. There was Michael Faraday, the Scottish physicist in the 18th Century who discovered anomalous energy coming off of a machine, basically a wheel that had magnets and that rotated, and indeed it works. You can get anomalous amounts of electricity coming off of the machine when you reach a certain threshold number of revolutions per minute.

There have been many experiments through the years with free energy and Tesla was probably the most prominent. Tesla also had some other kind of more dangerous forms of free energy, such as using the earth’s magnetic field. That’s also very powerful but not advisable because of the immense side affects that could be pretty severe, just like nuclear energy.

But historically there have been many, many others too. During the 1990s, I traveled the world and visited maybe fifteen of the most prominent inventors of a whole wide variety of free energy devices. I interviewed them, photographed them, and I put them in a book Miracle of the Void, which described the courage of these people, but also some of the principles of the devices that they’re inventing. It takes a lot of research to develop the technology and so far it has been forbidden because of the powers that be who don’t want it to happen.

It’s now more of a social and a political question than a question of feasibility. I’m convinced that it is real and I’m convinced that it can be developed with some moderate effort like a couple of hundred million dollars, or else a couple of days of fighting in Iraq.

Editor: How about the shamans, the medicine people, the wisdom that people had and how a lot of those cultures are disappearing and are being destroyed. Do you feel that there is a great deal that we could learn from the ancient people who used to live here if we took more time to study their wisdom and knowledge?

Dr. Brian O’Leary: Oh boy, could we ever learn a lot from them. I think that one of the ultimate solutions that we’re going to have to consider is to go beyond the phenomenology of UFOs and free energy concepts. Thus we can embrace the phenomena and make them a part of our lives. We’re discovering that the ancient wisdom really embraces many of these things. The shamans and medicine men know a lot more than we give them credit for.

We’re very blessed living here in Ecuador because this is a kind of multicultural country. I think that about 30 percent of the population here is indigenous so there is a very strong political force among the indigenous people and we feel really blessed to be here and to be among them. The country of Ecuador, which has a democratically elected government is now having a constituent assembly and coming up with a series of recommendations that include that we are a multicultural country, that we must understand the various indigenous tribes are nations within nations and that they would then have a part in political decision-making. So we use this as an example of what has to happen in the future, and ancient wisdom is certainly a very important aspect of that.

Editor: There’s a lot of knowledge of medicines and spirituality and physics itself because they did things, because they had ceremonies and rituals in which they would go into altered states and would be able to know things that we apparently couldn’t know under ordinary means. To me, it’s quite interesting in a lot of respects.

Dr. Brian O’Leary: There are many, many things that lie outside the box of accepted norms that have been arbitrarily established and which are limiting, and actually imprisoning us. So if we blend ancient knowledge and we invite indigenous people to participate as equals in the culture, if we develop clean energy, so forth and so on. If we embrace the UFO phenomenon. We also realize that, through our combined positive intentions and through our consciousness, we can actually influence the outcome of material events. That’s another scientific principle that I’ve studied through the years and have published a number of books about. It’s the whole question of creating a new science, a science that embraces a much wider range of phenomenon and understanding, and a science that I hope can be responsibly used so that we can carry on on this planet, we can solve the population problems, solve the energy problems, and solve the war problem and survive this period.

That’s my hope anyway, and that’s our dedication here at Montesuenos in Ecuador, where peace and sustainability will be studied. These are the primary concepts that we want to embrace here, and we think that the job can be done but we have to shift our power structures in order to get it.

Editor: Since you mentioned earlier on in our conversation about the work you did on studying the planet Mars, what do you think about all of the stories about the Mars Face, and all of these things that people are seeing in photographs.

Dr. Brian O’Leary: I was one of the scientists who first investigated the Cydonia region and came to a different conclusion from my former colleagues in the planetary/science community, people who have to rely on NASA to fund them, and I didn’t have to obey anymore, so that put me in a more neutral position. From what I could tell, and I can’t be 100 percent sure of this, but The Face that was photographed by Viking is certainly very face like rendered in all three dimensions. Some of us did some really careful image processing work, including Mark Carlotto, a few others and myself. We published our work back in the 1990s. Since then, there has been a group called the Society for Planetary SETI [Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence] Research. It is headed by Horace Crater, a physics professor at the University of Tennessee, not too far from you. This group has published a lot of really good stuff on image processing and comes from a very independent and yet scientifically well trained group that believes in peer review. Many of us think that these anomalies are certainly very much worth pursuing further and checking out when we go back there.