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Astronomers Detect Over 200 Potentially Intelligent Signals From Solar Type Stars

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posted on Oct, 12 2016 @ 01:58 PM
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According to a recent publication on arxiv.org, Prof. Ermanno F. Borra and Eric Trottier (Department of Physics, Engineering Physics and Optics, Université Laval/Canada) reportedly detected a variety of peculiar narrow-range signals in a dataset acquired by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey telescope. The method they applied is a so-called Fourier transform with which Borra and Trottier investigated more than two million F2-K1 class stars. In 234 of these, they found periodic modulations which they interpret as being most likely signals of extraterrestial intelligence (ETI), although further investigation is needed in order to completely rule out alternative explanations.


Abstract: "A Fourier transform analysis of 2.5 million spectra in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey was carried out to detect periodic spectral modulations. Signals having the same period were found in only 234 stars overwhelmingly in the F2 to K1 spectral range. The signals cannot be caused by instrumental or data analysis effects because they are present in only a very small fraction of stars within a narrow spectral range and because signal to noise ratio considerations predict that the signal should mostly be detected in the brightest objects, while this is not the case (...)

We find that the detected signals have exactly the shape of an ETI signal predicted in [our] previous publication and are therefore in agreement with this hypothesis. The fact that they are only found in a very small fraction of stars within a narrow spectral range centered near the spectral type of the sun is also in agreement with the ETI hypothesis (...) Although unlikely, there is also a possibility that the signals are due to highly peculiar chemical compositions in a small fraction of galactic halo stars."

Source/arxiv.org


Sloan Digital Sky Survey Telescope (source):


Spectrum of an F5 class star in Fourir mode, showing a distinct signal (see enlargement).
(Source, p. 36-37)

Based on his paper (and a previous publication investigating the characteristics of possible ETI signals), Borra theorizes that ET civs might use this particular way of sending narrow-range periodic transmissions in order to avoid unreasonably high amounts of energy while broadcasting signals into the cosmic neighborhood. In fact, he argues, we might use this technique in future as well if we decide to make ourselves known within a certain circumference of several hundred light-years (with signals that are efficient in terms of energy input, yet easily detectable from far away).

The paper is quite technical and full of astronomical terms/formulas, so I can't say much about how reasonable their arguments really are. This is way out of my comfort zone and not really my area of expertise but I thought I'd put it out there for further discussion.

Perhaps it's noteworthy to mention that Borra has been publishing in a variety of astronomy journals over the years and also issued many scientific pre-prints on arxiv before. All published items relate to his particular field so I assume he knows what he's talking about (especially regarding why he's in favor of the ETI hypothesis).

On the other hand, it just sounds too good to be true: I remember when, long ago, people got excited about quasars and of course there was no ETI involved in the periodic signals they sent out. Could this also be something more mundane? I look forward to your critical thoughts and comments!




SOURCES AND LINKS:
------------------------------------------

1. Arxiv.org: publication by F. Borra and E. Trottier (2016)
2. Arxiv.org: First publication on ETI hypothesis (Borra, 2012)
3. Information about Borra at IAU
4. Université Laval: department overview
5. Wikipedia: Fourier transform
edit on 12-10-2016 by jeep3r because: text and formatting




posted on Oct, 12 2016 @ 02:49 PM
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a reply to: jeep3r

I just noticed this topic has already been posted in another forum:
www.abovetopsecret.com...

@Mods: Feel free to delete this thread
edit on 12-10-2016 by jeep3r because: too bad :-)


+14 more 
posted on Oct, 12 2016 @ 02:57 PM
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originally posted by: jeep3r
a reply to: jeep3r

I just noticed this topic has already been posted in another forum:
www.abovetopsecret.com...

@Mods: Feel free to delete this thread


We have a million threads on the same topic regarding hilary and trump so an extra one on a real story is not that bad..
Didn't see the original.. Thanks for the info S and f.



posted on Oct, 12 2016 @ 03:47 PM
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a reply to: jeep3r

Very thorough sourcing and presentation. Thanks.



posted on Oct, 12 2016 @ 04:25 PM
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a reply to: jeep3r

Sometimes they leave them up if they are in different forums. Besides you have some good info here!



posted on Oct, 12 2016 @ 05:51 PM
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This is my favorite thread of all time here and it deserves far more attention than its getting.

You sourced this post extremely well, and provided a lot of relevant information. It is my hope that out of those 200 or so stars that at least one harbors someone we can talk to.



posted on Oct, 13 2016 @ 04:17 AM
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a reply to: jeep3r

Nice thread but what we have to keep in mind the first detection of a pulsar was thought to be artificial.



No known natural sources would produce such a signal. Bell and Hewish began to rule out various sources of human interference, including other radio astronomers, radar reflected off the moon, television signals, orbiting satellites, and even possible effects from a large corrugated metal building near the telescope. None of those could explain the strange signal.





The signal, a series of sharp pulses that came every 1.3 seconds, seemed too fast to be coming from anything like a star. Bell and Hewish jokingly called the new source LGM-1, for “Little Green Men.” (It was later renamed.)



Lets wait and see. s&f
edit on 13-10-2016 by wmd_2008 because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 13 2016 @ 04:21 AM
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a reply to: projectvxn




It is my hope that out of those 200 or so stars that at least one harbors someone we can talk to.

"Talk to" would depend, somewhat, upon how far away they are.


What do you think about Hawking hawking cars now? Just saw his Jaguar ad.



edit on 10/13/2016 by Phage because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 13 2016 @ 10:06 AM
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It's very interesting that a detailed prediction of what a SETI signal of this type should look like was then strongly fulfilled by the actual data. Prediction is often called the 'gold standard' for a scientific hypothesis. Also interesting that these supposed signals were all from stars quite similar to our Sun, which seem likeliest to support intelligent life.

The detail that all the stars seem to be emitting pulses at the same, very rapid, rate is puzzling. Could they all be acting in concert? Some have suggested that this pulsing looks more like an artifact, imposed by the complex analytical procedure used to extract the 'signals' from the noisy background.



posted on Oct, 13 2016 @ 01:03 PM
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originally posted by: wmd_2008
a reply to: jeep3r

Nice thread but what we have to keep in mind the first detection of a pulsar was thought to be artificial.



A certain degree of caution would be appropriate considering their extraordinary claim, I agree. It's easy to get excited over something while, in the end, we might find there's an entirely mundane explanation for these obervations. But it's still very interesting and I give them the benefit of the doubt.

Meanwhile, I found some more details about PASP: Publications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific, the journal in which his findings are supposed to be published. Seems like a legitimate source for scientific articles, dedicated to review papers, instrumentation papers and dissertation summaries (wiki).




posted on Oct, 13 2016 @ 01:09 PM
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a reply to: Phage




"Talk to" would depend, somewhat, upon how far away they are.


Indeed. Anything beyond 30 lightyears would probably be just too long of a distance for effective communications.




What do you think about Hawking hawking cars now? Just saw his Jaguar ad.


Haven't seen the ad. I'll go look for it.



posted on Oct, 14 2016 @ 12:35 AM
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If they are ET signals carrying information, then why isn't there a layer of data in it of some kind?

I always imagined that any signal would contain data, even if we might not know precisely what it means.

Are these signals suspected to be from radiowave communications or are they just some sort of leftover background artifact of the activity of an advanced ET civilization?

I pick up from the article that they are intentional signals using a type of tech that we will one day employ when signalling to a certain radius of x light years.

What is it precisely about the signal that tells them it's ET, other than that it's only happening with stars similar to our own (a good sign imo)?

Are Aliens laughing even as we speak at the first more powerful broadcasts of "I love Lucy?"

They would decode it.

I think it was Carl Sagan who also felt that it would come in the form of some sort of informationally rich bandwidth of some kind.

I'm hearing more about these types of signal detection but no mention of the nature of the wavelength and what's in it and what it's purpose might be.

Thanks for shedding light on this anyone.

Ankh

edit on 14-10-2016 by AnkhMorpork because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 14 2016 @ 12:49 AM
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never mind, stupid joke, question above much more important..
edit on 14-10-2016 by AnkhMorpork because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 14 2016 @ 12:52 AM
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a reply to: Ross 54




Some have suggested that this pulsing looks more like an artifact, imposed by the complex analytical procedure used to extract the 'signals' from the noisy background.


That is exactly what Fourier Transforms do. They find order out of seemed chaos. The signal to noise ratio is so low in broadband data, you need a Fourier to see if there is anything there. Just like any process, it can be over and under tuned to produce artifacts. I am sure that the scientists are looking to reproduce the data, and they will be analyzing how the Fourier/Gaussian processes were calibrated and applied.



posted on Oct, 14 2016 @ 12:56 AM
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a reply to: charlyv

Wouldn't an alien signal be filled with alien chatter, maybe in some sort of nested hierarchy of computational capacity, like digital computing, and would thus blow our hair back when we find it?



posted on Oct, 14 2016 @ 01:06 AM
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originally posted by: AnkhMorpork
a reply to: charlyv

Wouldn't an alien signal be filled with alien chatter, maybe in some sort of nested hierarchy of computational capacity, like digital computing, and would thus blow our hair back when we find it?


The actual data is so weak it may never be able to be brought out. What they are essentially trying to detect is a carrier, the foundation that any information would be multiplexed on. Just finding a carrier, is really a huge discovery, if it pans out.



posted on Oct, 14 2016 @ 01:09 AM
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Even if such races might have passed off the scene or bolted from the galaxy for some reason, you'd think the last thing you'd do might be to create a legacy of information broadcast by a beacon capable of transmitting for the duration of that star's lifetime.

I guess the problem for us might be that because these are light waves, we're always looking back in time, but there's been plenty of time, particularly among the older G2V type stars (like our sun) in the galactic halo, which is where we might expect to find it, and that is true of this finding, that that's where the cluster of these 200+ systems was found, so that's promising.

But if they were being broadcast by advanced ET civilizations with the PURPOSE of transmitting information, it would be a very information rich bandwidth or bandwidths.

I wish we'd detect it soon, because it's starting to get lonely in this galaxy so far as yet.

I just don't understand why we're not getting bombarded, even from civilizations that have might long passed away but left an informational remnant of their existence.

As a sort of Trojan horse for re-assembling their civilization vicariously through another even as yet unborn would make for a very good and perhaps frightening Science fiction story.

What in God's name would they want to communicate?

Yeah, when we find it, which we ought to, it will blow our hair back and we'll know right away and the news will go out - we're not alone!

I hope it happens in our lifetime.



posted on Oct, 14 2016 @ 01:14 AM
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a reply to: charlyv

I guess like light it dissipates in direct ratio to distance travelled, so I get it, that's why it's faint.

So they still might have the carrier wave... OMG!

How would or could a message be "multlplexed" on the carrier wave?

And is there any way of amplifying it?

OMG, wouldn't that be amazing?! Not one, but 200 of them, and if they're coming from the galactic halo, those are very very very old sunlike stars, so even with advanced tech coming and going, you'd think there would be remnants of something, and as I mentioned, there would be any number of reasons for ET civs to be transmitting for the purpose of sharing wisdom and knowledge with other would be up and comers.

But what might it contain? Holy!

edit on 14-10-2016 by AnkhMorpork because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 14 2016 @ 01:37 AM
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a reply to: AnkhMorpork




How would or could a message be "multlplexed" on the carrier wave?
And is there any way of amplifying it?


The output of the Fourier will never show any detail, other than saying that there is a repetitive signal of some sort. Any real data is kind of "lost in translation" if you will. With distances like this, precise data (what ever that may be) is most likely lost or clobbered/corrupted anyway, so amplification of the actual signal would be just amplified clobbered data.

For these reasons, I do not believe that there is any purposeful communication directed outside of a local area, the time and natural corruption would prohibit it. We are probably eavesdropping on what they are saying to each other...

Think of a carrier as a clock. A constant and consistent frequency. Between the major frequency spikes, actual data is encoded. The receiver needs to synch on the carrier to extract the data impressed within it. This is multiplexing/demultiplexing. Again, with such weak signals, this level of data detection is most likely not achievable.
edit on 14-10-2016 by charlyv because: content



posted on Oct, 14 2016 @ 02:26 AM
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is it AM , FM , Upper or Lower side Band , FSK, RTTY, Packet , or ASCII and what Frequency Range ???
edit on 14-10-2016 by bobw927 because: left out some modes




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