Is there an alien out there?

There’s a hum growing over the possibility of extraterrestrial intelligence, thanks to a group of Russian astronomers as they have detected an interesting radio signal spike that seemed to come from the direction of a sun-like star in the constellation Hercules, known as HD164595.

Paul Glister, a science and tech writer wrote in his website Centauri Dreams that Claudio Maccone, the Italian astronomer and other astronomers associated with the search for extraterrestrial intelligence have found that signal in the direction of HD164595, a star of 0.99 solar masses with an estimated age of 6.3 billion years, located 95 light-years away. HD 164595 b, a known planet in this system is similar in size to Neptune and orbits its star in 40 days. Of course, there could be other planets exist in the system.

Gilster says the astronomers made the observation with the RATAN-600 radio telescope in Zelenchukskaya, in southern Russia. He also warned that the evidence is highly preliminary.

“No one is claiming that this is the work of an extraterrestrial civilization, but it is certainly worth further study. Working out the strength of the signal, the researchers say that if it came from an isotropic beacon, it would be of a power possible only for a Kardashev Type II civilization. If it were a narrow beam signal focused on our Solar System, it would be of a power available to a Kardashev Type I civilization. The possibility of noise of one form or another cannot be ruled out, and researchers in Paris led by Jean Schneider are considering the possible microlensing of a background source by HD164595. But the signal is provocative enough that the RATAN-600 researchers are calling for permanent monitoring of this target.”

Gilster says the discovery and works to understand the signal’s origin will be discussed at a SETI committee meeting during the 67th International Astronautical Congress in Guadalajara, Mexico, on Tuesday, September 27.

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