Tag Archives: Intelligent Life

Exomoons May Support Life

Life Outside Our Solar System Might Exist on Exomoons

     The discovery of an exomoon could be years away, but researchers are already theorizing the conditions under which liquid water might be found on their surfaces.
By Elizabeth Howell
www.seeker.com
3-27-17

As some scientists search for habitable planets outside our solar system, other researchers are tackling a similar question for the moons of these planets. So-called exomoons have yet to be found outside our solar system, and a detection could be a decade away – or more.

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Finding Proof of Space Aliens, What Happens Next?

Finding Proof of Space Aliens, What Happens Next?

Protocols for responding to the discovery of extraterrestrial
intelligence have been created, but they might not be followed.

     First came the suggestion that an “alien megastructure” had been observed around KIC 8462852, a.k.a. Tabby’s Star. Months later, people were talking about a signal seen by a Russian telescope that some thought was transmitted from the environs of a stellar cousin of
By Seth Shostak
NBC News
8-1-17

the sun. And not long after that, the Cyclopean Arecibo antenna in Puerto Rico reported weird signals that seemed to come from the dwarf star Ross 128, a scant 11 light-years away.

[…]

These three claims purporting to show the existence of aliens haven’t panned out. But what happens if some future claim does? What preparations are in place to deal with the discovery of a radio signal or a laser flash that would prove beyond doubt that we have cosmic compeers? Does the government have a plan? Does anyone?

[…]

… Back in 1989, when a now-defunct NASA program to search for extraterrestrial intelligence was gaining steam, protocols were drafted to spell out best practices in case the search proved successful. These were later updated and streamlined by the International Academy of Astronautics SETI Permanent Committee. (Click here to see the revised protocols.)

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If They Aliens Discover Us Before We Discover Them (Redux)

Talking the walk …

     Don’t know about you, but I’m loving those mystery lights on Ceres as NASA’s surveillance probe, Dawn, bears down on the biggest chunk of real estate in the asteroid belt. And not because of the prospects for discovering alien activity – they’re remote, at best – but because of the opportunity to witness, again, the ritual disconnect that characterizes institutional science whenever The Great Taboo legitimately insinuates itself into a news cycle.

Let’s go back a few years when, after half a century of logging zilch in the Great ET Radio Signal Experiment, SETI pioneer Jill Tarter proposed


By Billy Cox
De Void
6-24-15

a new name for their endeavors, the Search for Extraterrestrial Technology (SETT). This was a tacit grudging concession that maybe radio astronomers had been working with a flawed model. In 2011, the International Journal of Astrobiology published a paper by astrophysicists Martin Elvis and Duncan Forgan proposing an even more specific tack, that maybe Earthlings ought to consider scanning the asteroid belt for evidence of ET “macro-engineering projects.” Translation: mining operations. Made sense. After all, they noted, asteroids are repositories for raw material like gold, platinum and silver, the kind of stuff you’d likely need to repair or refuel extended planetary missions.

And, as Forgan would hypothesize two years later in the IJA, ET wouldn’t even have to bend the known laws of physics to reach the rocky debris zone between Jupiter and Mars, no matter which part of the Milky Way he/she/it came from. Upon crunching the numbers, Forgan and a mathematician hypothesized that robotic technologies could have mapped this galaxy well below light speeds, in about 10 million years. On the cosmic scale of time, that’s no big deal.

So here’s what’s going on. In 2007, NASA hurls an unmanned vehicle toward the asteroid belt to look for clues to the formation of our solar system. Destination: “dwarf planets” Vesta and Ceres. Dawn enters a 14-month mapping orbit over Vesta in 2011, then moves on toward the bigger prize. In February, as it closes to within 29,000 miles of Ceres, Dawn’s cameras detect something totally off the charts – lights on the surface. Their luminosity doesn’t appear to be significantly affected by different sun angles. Two months and 25,000 miles closer, their intensity is still unblinking. Planetary scientists are stumped; at the Jet Propulsion Lab’s website, PR flacks do a very savvy thing by letting visitors vote on the most likely suspects: “volcano,” “geyser,” “salt deposit,” “ice,” “rock,” and “other.” Wonder what “other” could be. Hmm. Anyway, we’ll get an even better peek by summer’s end, when Dawn dips to within 900 miles of the surface.

No matter what those lights are all about, this sort of suspense is cool. Talk about a teaching opportunity for schools.

Now let’s review some of NASA’s recent headline-grabbing statements. In 2014, given our ongoing exoplanet transiting searches and the impending exploration of more local worlds like Europa, space agency scientists predicted Earthlings will discover ET life within 20 years. That forecast was reiterated just last week at the Astrobiology Science Conference in Chicago. In fact, NASA Associate Administrator for the Science Mission Directorate (there’s a mouthful) and former astronaut John Grunsfeld suggested that ET civilizations might already have detected us, the same way we’re locating and confirming the existence of deep-space planets. Quote:

“We put atmospheric signatures that guarantee someone with a large telescope 20 light years away could detect us. If there is life out there, intelligent life, they’ll know we’re here.”

Left unsaid, what none in that sheltered crowd wants to contemplate: And if they discover us before we discover them, maybe they’re already a lot closer than we think. But of course, there was no room in Chicago for a discussion of UFOs. That would be a little too declasse, like farting in church. Oh, and just to make sure nobody got terribly excited, coverage of last week’s Windy City pow-wow also included a canned statement from NASA chief scientist Ellen Stefan. In April, during a discussion about Mars, she drew distinctions between the discovery of biological life and some other silly alternative like, well, the 2011 peer-reviewed paper’s “targeted asteroid mining” scenario. “We are not talking about little green men,” she insisted. “We are talking about little microbes.”

Stofan could’ve said “intelligent life.” But she went for the gag line instead. Knowing full well how much everybody loves microbes.

Hey, no one wants to look like an idiot as we approach the biggest discovery of all time, wherever that may be. The solution to the Ceres lights will likely fall far short of little green men. But the language we employ as we draw closer to the inevitability doesn’t inspire much confidence; it suggests we’re deeply conflicted in our enthusiasm for confirming The Other. Or at least the people at the top of NASA appear to be. Fortunately, we can console ourselves with the knowledge that science and politics never mix.

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Sorry, UFO Fans – NASA Says No Aliens … Yet

Sorry, UFO Fans – NASA Says No Aliens ... Yet

Conspiracy theorists believe that NASA has been in cahoots with the little green men for decades – and yesterday the wilder parts of the internet went (even more) nuts.

     A video supposedly posted by hacktivist collective Anonymous claimed NASA was ‘on the brink’ of revealing contact with aliens.

But NASA has stepped in to say that they’re not going to be doing a press conference with the little green men any time soon.

By Rob WaughRob Waugh
Metro.co.uk
6-27-17

Dr Thomas Zurbuchen, Associate Administrator, NASA Science Mission Directorate, said, ‘Contrary to some reports, there’s no pending announcement from NASA regarding extraterrestrial life.’

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‘Evidence of Alien Life’ To Be Released By NASA? | VIDEO

'Evidence of Alien Life' To Be Released By NASA?

     HUMANS are about to discover alien life, Nasa believes – according to the latest video from hacktivist group Anonymous.

The hackers published YouTube clip which claims a Nasa scientist

By Laura Burnip
The Sun
6-25-17

made the announcement at the last meeting of the US Science, Space and Technology committee.

It comes after Nasa’s Kepler space observatory discovered 219 “potential new worlds” in other solar systems.

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Aliens are the Source of Fast Radio Bursts?



Alien are the Source of Fast Radio Bursts?

      Bizarre flashes of cosmic light may actually be generated by advanced alien civilizations, as a way to accelerate interstellar spacecraft to tremendous speeds, a new study suggests.
Mike Wall
Space.com
3-9-17

Astronomers have catalogued just 20 or so of these brief, superbright flashes, which are known as fast radio bursts (FRBs), since the first one was detected in 2007. FRBs seem to be coming from galaxies billions of light-years away, but what’s causing them remains a mystery.

“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,” study co-author Avi Loeb, a theorist at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, said in a statement Thursday (March 9). “An artificial origin is worth contemplating and checking.” [5 Bold Claims of Alien Life]

One potential artificial origin, according to the new study, might be a gigantic radio transmitter built by intelligent aliens. So Loeb and lead author Manasvi Lingam, of Harvard University, investigated the feasibility of this possible explanation.

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How Might First Contact (with Aliens) Actually Go?



How Might First Contact (with Aliens) Actually Go?

There are countless challenges
from finding them to figuring out how to say hello

     Making contact with an alien species would be the most important event in human history. The fabric of human culture, ranging from the arts to science to religion, would be irrevocably altered. Of course, it hasn’t happened yet and there’s no guarantee that it ever will. But humanity is without a doubt looking. And it may be in our best interest to find them before they find us.
By David Grossman
Popular Mechanics
1-19-17

As Wendover Productions posits, with a somewhat militaristic and very un-Star Trek view of the whole endeavor, is that when two civilizations meet, one of them tends to be destroyed, historically. And the one that comes out unscathed, that tends to be the one that made the contact:

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Alien Life Might Be Everywhere, Suggests Astrophysicist

Alien Life Might Be Everywhere, Suggests Astrophysicist

     Perhaps Arthur C. Clarke was being uncharacteristically unambitious. He once pointed out that any sufficiently advanced technology is going to be indistinguishable from magic. If you dropped in on a bunch of Paleolithic farmers with your iPhone and a pair of
By Caleb Scharf
nautil.us
11-17-16

sneakers, you’d undoubtedly seem pretty magical. But the contrast is only middling: The farmers would still recognize you as basically like them, and before long they’d be taking selfies. But what if life has moved so far on that it doesn’t just appear magical, but appears like physics?

After all, if the cosmos holds other life, and if some of that life has evolved beyond our own waypoints of complexity and technology, we should be considering some very extreme possibilities. Today’s futurists and believers in a machine “singularity” predict that life and its technological baggage might end up so beyond our ken that we wouldn’t even realize we were staring at it. That’s quite a claim, yet it would neatly explain why we have yet to see advanced intelligence in the cosmos around us, despite the sheer number of planets it could have arisen on—the so-called Fermi Paradox.

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Alien Life Might Be Everywhere, Suggests Astrophysicist

Alien Life Might Be Everywhere, Suggests Astrophysicist

     Perhaps Arthur C. Clarke was being uncharacteristically unambitious. He once pointed out that any sufficiently advanced technology is going to be indistinguishable from magic. If you dropped in on a bunch of Paleolithic farmers with your iPhone and a pair of
By Caleb Scharf
nautil.us
11-17-16

sneakers, you’d undoubtedly seem pretty magical. But the contrast is only middling: The farmers would still recognize you as basically like them, and before long they’d be taking selfies. But what if life has moved so far on that it doesn’t just appear magical, but appears like physics?

After all, if the cosmos holds other life, and if some of that life has evolved beyond our own waypoints of complexity and technology, we should be considering some very extreme possibilities. Today’s futurists and believers in a machine “singularity” predict that life and its technological baggage might end up so beyond our ken that we wouldn’t even realize we were staring at it. That’s quite a claim, yet it would neatly explain why we have yet to see advanced intelligence in the cosmos around us, despite the sheer number of planets it could have arisen on—the so-called Fermi Paradox.

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Intelligent Life 94 Light-Years Away? | VIDEO

Intelligent Life 94 Light-Years Away?

A SETI Signal?

     A star system 94 light-years away is in the spotlight as a possible candidate for intelligent inhabitants, thanks to the discovery of a radio signal by a group of Russian astronomers.
Seth Shostak
www.seti.org
8-30-16

HD 164595, a solar system a few billion years older than the Sun but centered on a star of comparable size and brightness, is the purported source of a signal found with the RATAN-600 radio telescope in Zelenchukskaya, at the northern foot of the Caucasus Mountains. This system is known to have one planet, a Neptune-sized world in a very tight orbit, making it unattractive for life. However, there could be other planets in this system that are still undiscovered.

The signal seems to have been discussed in a presentation given by several Russian astronomers as well as Italian researcher, Claudio Maccone, the chair of the International Academy of Astronautics Permanent SETI Committee. Maccone has recently sent an email to SETI scientists in which he describes this presentation, including the signal ascribed to star system HD 164595.

Could it be a transmission from a technically proficient society? …

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