14 Feb
Are Radio Bursts Propelling Alien Probes? Are Radio Bursts Propelling Alien Probes?

Are Radio Bursts Propelling Alien Probes?

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Newly published research indicates that detection of fast radio bursts could amount to signs of advanced alien technology that could lead to discoveries of alien life. It's possible, in fact, that these radio bursts could emanate from transmitters the size of planets which provide power to interstellar probes, and that the bursts might actually be leakage.

"Fast radio bursts are exceedingly bright given their short duration and origin at great distances, and we haven't identified a possible natural source with any confidence," said theorist Avi Loeb of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. "An artificial origin is worth contemplating and checking."

Fast radio bursts, as the name suggests, are flashes of radio emission that last for a millisecond. There have been less than two dozen of these detected since their discovery in 2007. The bursts are believed to have emanated from galaxies located billions of light years away.

Loeb, along with colleague Manasvi Lingam, looked at the possibility of making a radio transmitter powerful enough to be noticed across such vast distances. They discovered that if the transmitter were to be powered by solar energy, the sunlight hitting the area of a planet twice the size of Earth would be sufficient to produce the required energy. While such a structure goes beyond the abilities of mankind to construct, it is possible according to the laws of physics.

The kind of power involved in such a structure could be used for "driving interstellar sails", say the scientists, which could direct a payload of roughly a million tons, or approximately 20 times that of Earth's largest cruise ships.

"That's big enough to carry living passengers across interstellar or even intergalactic distances," Lingam noted.


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Read 582 times Last modified on Thursday, 31 January 2019 08:07
Jim Lillie

Jim began writing for newspapers and designing for publishing companies at a time when both industries were just beginning to make the switch from manual to digital platforms. Jim lives in Boulder, Colorado with his teenage son.

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