Astronomers Make Startling Discovery: an Alien Signal?

Alien signal?

This could be the thing we’ve all been waiting for: a clear sign of intelligent life out there in the galaxy—an alien signal.

There are those who would say they’re already here, of course. But it will probably take this, the identification of life way out there to make mainstream science open to the UFO evidence that’s been here on Earth for centuries.

Why Astronomers are So Excited

alien signal
11 bursts from FRB 121102
Image Credit: Paul Scholz

When radio telescopes pick up signals that repeat in fast bursts, it gets astronomers interested—these kinds of signals aren’t super-common in nature. Most of these bursts are short-lived, though.

In 2016, they detected a fast signal burst (FSB) they named FRB 121102—it’s a signal that repeats. If that sounds to you like it might just be an alien signal, well, you’re thinking the same thing astronomers thought. “These radio flashes must have enormous amounts of energy to be visible from [this distance],” said astronomer Shami Chatterjee.

Now, scientists have managed to pinpoint the area of space these signals are coming from—and it turns out there have been ten other fast signal bursts detected from the same region of space. It’s very likely that this is the same signal, repeating again and again. There could be natural explanations for something like this, but given the huge power the signals have, an alien source may be the best explanation.

We’re Not Saying It’s an Alien Signal—But It’s an Alien Signal

The super-skeptics in the scientific community scoffed at first, as is their nature. Knee-jerkers claimed that the signals were probably from a local microwave oven and not from a distant galaxy.

With the new evidence that pinpoints the source of the signal, the skeptics have run away with tails between their legs. “For awhile, I wasn’t sure these things were genuinely astrophysical,” said Harvard astronomer Peter Williams. “This … settles the question.”

Meanwhile, a new published paper by two distinguished scientist advances the idea that these signals are coming from an alien intelligence. Abraham Loeb and Manasvi Lingam suggest two plausible possibilities for the source of the fast-burst signals: long-distance radio beacons meant to announce the aliens’ existence to the rest of the universe, or they could be beams powering spacecraft that employ solar sails. Both ideas are exciting for an obvious reason: they would be the result of an advanced alien civilization.

So Where Do the Alien Signals Come From?

Scientists have pinpointed the distant signals’ source—they’re coming from a “dwarf” galaxy some three billion lightyears from us. Not only does this mean that the signals have extreme power to make it across this vast distance, but they are very, very old. It took three billion years for the signals to make it to Earth—when they left that dwarf galaxy, Earth was a brand-new planet. Life existed here, but only as crude plant-life. Multi-cellular life was still millions of years away.

Is there still life in that dwarf galaxy? Sadly, with the state of science, it appears we can’t know. Unless we find a way to cross vast space with some kind of faster-than-light technology, we have no way of finding out what the current state of the dwarf-galaxy (and its potential inhabitants) might be. We certainly could try to send signals back (“we hear you!”) but it would take another three billion years to cross the universe.


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