Bring up any sort of alien life form, and the topic is hotly debated. Many scientists are strongly against suggesting that aliens exist out there in the solar system, because there’s not enough data and research to back up this claim. Others are quick to point out that the universe is SO BIG there’s gotta be something else out there somewhere. Whatever side you take, and whatever you believe, there just might be some actual evidence that aliens are out there. Guys, this is the perfect time to really want to believe.
So, there’s a star out there in the sky called KIC 8462852, and it’s billions and millions of lightyears away from earth. But, that’s still close enough for a telescope to reach. Users on the online astronomy crowd sourcing site, Planet Hunters, first noticed a strange flickering with the star. As Tabetha Boyajian, one of the site’s advisory members Yale postdoctoral astronomy fellow explains, “What was unusual about that was the depth of the light dips, up to 20% decrease in light, and the timescales (of light variation) — a week to a couple of months.”
And if you know anything about stars, they’re either supposed to shine bright, or burn out. They’re not supposed to “flicker.”
Right now, Boyajian believes that it could simply be comet fragments reflecting back to us here on Earth. Or it could totally be aliens. Boyajian took some research to Andrew Siemion, the head of the University of California-Berkeley’s SETI Group, and he called it all “very atypical.” So then he submitted a proposal to use a great big, powerful telescope in West Virginia that detects radio waves. Radio waves are an easy way to detect intelligent life far away, because as Siemion explains, they can “can only be produced by technology.”
“We’re going to look very closely, as closely as we can. We are limited in terms of how long we can view a target given the curvature of the earth (and) instrumentation,” Siemion explained to CNN, “If we’re awarded the observation, we’ll have between 24 to 36 hours with a variety of different radio receivers.”
The team will hear back soon whether they can use the telescope or not. With that technology, while they might not be able to prove anything right away, they’ll at least be able to rule out some theories. Like, the possibility of aliens. Or they could totally prove it true.
Guys, we might not be alone.
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