There is plenty of evidence that US astronauts have had and have reported UFO sightings. The evidence comes from interviews and eyewitness accounts, from transcripts of transmissions made by the astronauts, and from statements, which have been made publicly, by the astronauts. There has also been more concrete evidence that their sightings haven’t be made up and that they actually did see something, but such evidence is harder to come by since that hard evidence is still deemed secret.
Many of the sightings were made when several of the astronauts (before they entered the astronautic program) were flying fighter jets and experimental aircraft in various parts of the world. Others were made while in space capsules or during space walks, and even on moonwalks.
Perhaps Major Gordon Cooper made the best known of these sightings during his Gemini mission in the spring of 1963. His report of a ‘green, glowing object’ that was approaching his space capsule was not only picked up on RADAR by the station near Perth, Australia, but the report Major Cooper made at the time was picked up and rebroadcast by NBC. As was typical, however, reporters were not allowed to interview Major Cooper regarding the sighting.
It was not the first time that Major Cooper had reported seeing UFOs. As he testified before the United Nations, “I did have occasion in 1951 to have two days of observation of many flights of them [UFOs], of different sizes, flying in fighter formation, generally from east to west over Europe.”
In an often quoted excerpt from a taped interview by J. L. Ferrando, Major Cooper said, “For many years I have lived with a secret, in a secrecy imposed on all specialists in astronautics. I can now reveal that every day, in the USA, our radar instruments capture objects of form and composition unknown to us. And there are thousands of witness reports and a quantity of documents to prove this, but nobody wants to make them public.”
The Major was hardly alone. Astronauts as well known as Buzz Aldrin, Eugene Cernan, Ed White, James McDivitt, Neil Armstrong, and James Lovell all also reported sightings. Many astronauts were also camera buffs and have reportedly taken pictures of UFOs, though the pictures generally have not been released to the public. (Note: The US space program still receives a majority of its funding through the military, and so is bound by military security protocols.)
Even if the harder evidence, such as pictures and RADAR tracking reports, is never released though, it is reasonable to believe that the accounts given by the astronauts in their own words indicate that many of them did in fact see UFOs.