Key idea: Detected in 1977, the Wow! Signal is the strongest candidate for a genuine alien transmission, but where did it come from? This study may have the answer.
Original author and publication date: Aaron Reich – May 20, 2022
Futurizonte Editor’s Note: The chances that we are alone in the universe are minimal. We should prepare ourselves to meet our cosmic neighbors.
From the article:
A scientist may have pinpointed the origin of the Wow! Signal, the most famous alien radio broadcast in history, making it an ideal candidate for future research and observations in the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI).
The study, which was polished in the peer-reviewed academic periodical The International Journal of Astrobiology, suggests that the famous signal could very well have come from a star located in the Sagittarius constellation that is similar to our own Sun.
What is the Wow! Signal?
The Wow! Signal is easily the most famous and enduring extraterrestrial radio transmission to Earth in history and to this day is the strongest candidate for a genuine radio transmission from an intelligent source.
The signal itself is a strong narrowband radio signal and was recorded on August 15, 1977 at the Big Ear radio telescope at Ohio State University.
One of the big questions surrounding the Wow! Signal has always been where it came from. It was long thought that it originated from somewhere in the Sagittarius constellation, but efforts to narrow it down any further than two specific regions of space proved fruitless.
But what this study did was operate under the assumption that, if it was indeed made by an advanced and intelligent alien civilization, then they must live somewhere. Likely, they would live on an exoplanet similar to Earth.
To narrow it down, the researcher behind it made use of the European Space Agency’s Gaia Archive, which contains data on the deduced positions, motions, brightness and more of objects in the Milky Way galaxy and beyond.
Here, they made use of the original estimates that narrowed down the origin of the signal to two regions and added a number of parameters and variables. Specifically, it came with the goal of narrowing it down to a certain kind of star that is the same type as the Sun, as the Sun is the only star confirmed to be able to support life.
With all these parameters, the researcher was able to narrow it down to 38 candidate stars. Then, when specifying it for Sun-like stars, it was narrowed down to just one star, designated 2MASS 19281982-2640123.