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New Method In Search For E.T., Move Over SETI

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posted on Jun, 13 2005 @ 06:33 PM
The search for extra-solar planets has lead some astronomers to believe that we should be able to detect artificial objects around stars and planets as well. This is exciting, imagine if a large space station were detected orbiting a distant star, the implications are enormous.

In April 2004, Luc F. A. Arnold, (Observatoire de Haute-Provence CNRS 04870 Saint-Michel - l'Observatoire, France) was working on a transit generated by a saturn-like planet when he had an idea. Could this same principle be applied to look for transiting bodies that were artificial in nature?
"I discussed the idea with several colleagues who found it interesting," commented Arnold. A collection of artificial bodies would produce light curves easily distinguishable from natural ones. For example, a triangular object or something shaped like our own man-made satellites would show an entirely different signature. If multiple artificial objects were detected transiting - this could possibly be a form of signaling the presence of other intelligent life - one with an effectiveness equal to the range of the laser pulse method.
A cost-effective alternative to radio SETI or optical SETI is to look for artificial planet-size bodies which may exist around other stars. Since they would always pass in front of their parent star for a given remote observer, there is a strong possibility they can be detected and characterized using the transit photometry method. A planetary transit light curve contains fine features due to the object shape - such as planet oblateness, double planets or ringed planets. As Arnold explains, "The sphere is the equilibrium shape preferred for massive and planet-size bodies to adapt to their own gravity, (but) one can consider non-spherical bodies, especially if they are small and lightweight and orbit a dwarf star. Their transits in front of a star would produce a detectable signal." Non-spherical artificial objects - like a triangle - would produce a specific transit light curve. If multiple objects should transit, a remarkable light curve would be created by their "on again - off again" nature of light. Such an observation would clearly claim an artificial nature. To visualize this, think of a flashlight moving behind a lowered window blind, and you'll begin to get the idea!

This method could find an extraterrestial satellite even if it were sending out signals Radio SETI was not set up to detect. If an artificial object is ever detected then SETI and other organizations could focus alot of effort on detecting any radio/pulsed light communications. It seems pretty neat to me.

posted on Jun, 13 2005 @ 07:43 PM
Excellent find.

I have no idea if they would find anything though. The objects would have to be pretty big in order to detect them. But would the object have to be in orbit around the star or sun in order to detect it? Or can they detect something orbiting one of the planets? If it has to be orbiting the sun, I wouldn't think the odds are too good that an extraterrestrial intelligence would put something there. Something in orbit around the star would not be useful like a communication satellite to a planet in orbit around the same star. Unless it was put there for the purpose of advertising they are there. It sounds like another long shot, but we will never know if we don't look.

What if they build their stations round like a Deathstar?

posted on Jun, 22 2005 @ 12:28 AM
Thats a great find, I wonder if they will detect anything (thats to say the gov. allows them to tell us if they do).

I personally think we need to find a way to detect large neutrino emissions.

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