Everybody loves a good UFO story. The fascination with alien spacecraft has been documented throughout the centuries with stories dating all the way back to 10th-century mentioning the circular flying machines. Flying saucers really took off in popular culture in the 50s, however, and we haven't looked back.
It appears that not only filmmakers were obsessed with the flying saucer as recently declassified documents show the Air Force was working on their own UFOs. The National Archives has the scoop on Project 1794. The project was spearheaded by the US Air Force to create a flying saucer that could reach speeds of mach 4. Here's some concept images of the machine:
The work on the Air Force's UFO line was outsourced to a Canadian firm called Avro Aircraft Limited. The fruits of their labor would neve be seen outside the military as the Air Force pulled the plug on the project in 1960. Wired found what appears to be the only video footage available of the flying saucer that the Air Force was working on. Once you watch the video, it becomes immediately apparent as to why the Air Force canceled the project.
For many years, UFO sightings were attributed to secret aircraft testing by the Air Force. The above video shows that the Air Force and Avro were not able to lift their vehicle more than a few feet off the ground. If anything, these new documents are going to rekindle the debate on flying saucers and the authenticity of various sightings.