Key idea: NASA sends powerful radio transmissions into space. Who’s listening, and when will they respond?
Original author and publication date: Briley Lewis – April 25, 2023
Futurizonte Editor’s Note: It would be nice to talk with aliens because it is getting very difficult to talk with humans.
From the article:
Humans have used radio waves to communicate across Earth for more than 100 years. Those waves also leak out into space, a fingerprint of our presence propagating through the cosmos. In more recent years, humans have also sent out a stronger signal beyond our planet: communications with our most distant probes, like the famous Voyager spacecraft.
Scientists recently traced the paths of these powerful radio transmissions from Earth to multiple far-away spacecraft and determined which stars—along with any planets with possible alien life around them—are best positioned to intercept those messages.
The research team created a list of stars that will encounter Earth’s signals within the next century and found that alien civilizations (if they’re out there) could send a return message as soon as 2029.
Their results were published on March 20 in the journal Publications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific.
“This is a famous idea from Carl Sagan, who used it as a plot theme in the movie Contact,” explains Howard Isaacson, a University of California, Berkeley astronomer and co-author of the new work.
However, it’s worth taking any study involving extraterrestrial life with a grain of salt. Kaitlin Rasmussen, an astrobiologist at the University of Washington not affiliated with the paper, calls this study “an interesting exercise, but unlikely to yield results.”
The results, in this case, would be aliens contacting Earth within a certain timeframe.