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Back in August of 1977, a team of astronomers studying radio transmissions from an observatory at Ohio State called the "Big Ear" recorded an unusual 72-second signal—it was so strong that team member Jerry Ehman scrawled "Wow!" next to the readout. Since that time, numerous scientists have searched for an explanation of the signal, but until now, no one could offer a valid argument. Possible sources such as asteroids, exo-planets, stars and even signals from Earth have all been ruled out. Some outside the science community even suggested that it was proof of aliens. It was noted that the frequency was transmitted at 1,420 MHz, though, which happens to be the same frequency as hydrogen.
The explanation started to come into focus last year when a team at the CPS [Center of Planetary Science] suggested that the signal might have come from a hydrogen cloud accompanying a comet—additionally, the movement of the comet would explain why the signal was not seen again. The team noted that two comets had been in the same part of the sky that the Big Ear was monitoring on the fateful day. Those comets, P/2008 Y2(Gibbs) and 266/P Christensen had not yet been discovered [at the time the WOW! signal was recorded]. The team then got a chance to test their idea as the two comets appeared once again in the night sky from November 2016 through February of 2017.
The team reports that radio signals from 266/P Christensen matched those from the Wow! signal 40 years ago.
In radio and electronics, an antenna (plural antennae or antennas), or aerial, is an electrical device which converts electric power into radio waves, and vice versa.
The void that contains the Milky Way, known as the KBC void for Keenan, Barger and the University of Hawaii's Lennox Cowie, is at least seven times as large as the average, with a radius measuring roughly 1 billion light years. To date, it is the largest void known to science. Hoscheit's new analysis, according to Barger, shows that Keenan's first estimations of the KBC void, which is shaped like a sphere with a shell of increasing thickness made up of galaxies, stars and other matter, are not ruled out by other observational constraints.
originally posted by: TEOTWAWKIAIFF
We are in rural Kansas and they're in London.
I guess if we are going to live in a hole might as well be the biggest hole in the known universe!
The alphanumeric sequence circled by Ehman, 6EQUJ5, represents the intensity variation of the radio signal over time, measured as unitless signal-to-noise ratio and ranging from 0 to 36, with the noise averaged over the previous few minutes. Each individual character corresponds to a sample of the signal, taken every 12 seconds. A whitespace character on the printout denotes an intensity between 0 and 1; the numbers "1" to "9" denote the correspondingly numbered intensities (from 1 to 9); intensities of 10 and above are indicated by a letter: "A" corresponds to intensities between 10 and 11, "B" to 11 to 12, and so on. The highest measured value was "U" (an intensity between 30 and 31), that is thirty times stronger than normal background noise.
A common misconception is that the Wow! signal constitutes some sort of message. In fact, what was received appears to be an unmodulated, continuous wave signal with no encoded information; essentially a flash of radio energy. The string "6EQUJ5" is merely the representation of the expected variation of signal intensity over time, expressed in the particular measuring system adopted for the experiment.
I didn't know hydrogen could be read as a radio signal.