A SETI Signal? | SETI Institute


Breaking news: SETI has possibly found radio transmission from aliens.


  1. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Not a Drill: SETI Is Investigating a Possible Extraterrestrial Signal From Deep Space
    If the signal is truly from an alien world, it’s one far more advanced than ours

    An international team of scientists from the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) is investigating mysterious signal spikes emitting from a 6.3-billion-year-old star in the constellation Hercules—95 light years away from Earth. The implications are extraordinary and point to the possibility of a civilization far more advanced than our own.

    The unusual signal was originally detected on May 15, 2015, by the Russian Academy of Science-operated RATAN-600 radio telescope in Zelenchukskaya, Russia, but was kept secret from the international community. Interstellar space reporter Paul Gilster broke the story after the researchers quietly circulated a paper announcing the detection of “a strong signal in the direction of HD164595.”

    “The signal conceivably fits the profile for an intentional transmission from an extraterrestrial source,” said Alan Boyle, author of The Case for Pluto who reported the story for Geekwire. “In any case, the blip is interesting enough to merit discussion by those who specialize in the search for extraterrestrial intelligence.”

  2. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Astronomers Don’t Think That So-Called SETI Signal Is Aliens—and Neither Should You

    a group of astronomers made many, many headlines after giving a presentation about “a strong signal in the direction of HD164595.” HD164595 is a Sun-like star 94 light-years away, and with the RATAN-600 radio telescope in Zelenchukskaya, Russia, pointed in its direction, the astronomers picked up a blast of radio waves about 4.5 times stronger than background static. Maybe aliens? they suggested. We should investigate.

    Their presentation began circulating among astronomers in slide-deck form.

    But I have to tell you something: Astronomers don’t know much about that “SETI candidate” signal beyond that it’s made of radio waves. And while human beings should absolutely spend some time figuring out what this signal is, they have almost no reason to conclude it came from non-human beings. Here’s why:

    They don’t actually know it’s coming from that star.

    the actual source of the mysterious radio waves could be anywhere inside that elongation: The telescope’s “field of view” is just one strangely shaped pixel.

    They don’t know if it’s a narrowband signal.

    Historically, SETI programs have searched for “narrowband” signals spread over just a few frequencies, because scientists think it takes technology to squish a signal like that, like we do with radio-station broadcasts (nature’s narrowest radio signals seem to span around 300 Hz). A squished signal equals “Someone might have made it on purpose.”

    They don’t know it’s not human-generated interference.

    While astronomers don’t know if this signal is squished or spread-out, they do know the middle frequency that the telescope was sensitive to: around 11 gigahertz.

    Two things: Radio telescopes are supposed to catch cool waves from space. And they do that. But they also catch less cool waves from Earth, or from Earth-orbit. Airport radar, Wi-Fi, spark plugs, cell phones, and basically anything that runs on electricity emits radio waves. And satellites use these frequencies to ping and downlink. The research team has not presented data to rule out humans as the signal’s makers. In fact, one will note that 11 gigahertz is in the exact middle of a band of the radio spectrum allocated to “fixed satellites.”

    “We see signals that come and go every day, all the time,”

    They don’t know it’s not a fluke.

    The team, led by Nikolai Bursov of the Russian Academy of Sciences’ Special Astrophysical Observatory, scanned the star 39 times. They saw this signal once.

    They didn’t tell other telescopes soon enough.

    This candidate SETI signal came in more than a year ago, in May 2015. The researchers didn’t say anything until now.

    In the SETI world, one of the first items on an excited astronomer’s agenda—upon perhaps making the most meaningful cosmic discovery in the history of humans—is to ask other telescopes to look at the same star system.

    Let’s rule out satellites and other interference; let’s cross quasars and other banging celestial objects off the list; let’s try to catch the waves again; let’s see if they look engineered or astronomical. Then we’ll talk.

  3. Tomi Engdahl says:

    SETI’s ‘Strong Signal’ Came From Earth

    Yesterday, it was reported that Russia has detected a strong signal around 11 GHz coming from HD164595, a star nearly identical in mass to the Sun and located about 95 light years away from Earth. Well, long story short the signal came Earth.

    Turns out the signal astronomers saw was “strong” because it came from Earth
    Of course, you already knew that if you read the skeptical Ars report on Monday.

    Ars was among the first news outlets to report on discussions among astronomers about observations of an intriguing “signal” that may have originated from a distant, Sun-like star. We cautioned readers that, because the signal was measured at 11Ghz, there was a “significant chance” it was of terrestrial origin, likely due to some military activity.

    Now the Special Astrophysical Observatory of the Russian Academy of Sciences has concurred, releasing a statement on the detection of a radio signal at the RATAN-600 radio astronomy observatory in southern Russia. “Subsequent processing and analysis of the signal revealed its most probable terrestrial origin,” the Russian scientists said.

  4. Tomi Engdahl says:

    ‘Alien’ Signal Source Reportedly Located (It Wasn’t The Vulcans)

    If it were a phone call, we might call it a butt-dial: A strong radio signal that set off questions about whether it emanated from an advanced alien race earlier this week is now believed to have come from a terrestrial source, and possibly from a Russian military satellite.

    The clarification came after researchers at the SETI Institute

    But Camila also noted that some experts were warning the signal might be merely interference, and possibly military in origin — and it now seems that that’s the case.

    The signal was detected in 2015 by Russian astronomers using the RATAN-600 radio telescope in Zelenchukskaya, at the foot of the Caucasus Mountains north of Georgia.

    Shostak’s SETI colleagues were unable to detect the signal, and in an update to his original blog post, Shostak says that both Russian news agencies and the Russian Academy of Sciences have concluded that the signal “is, indeed, terrestrial interference.”

    The intense media interest in the signal came one year after it was detected; that interest seems to have been prompted by the signal’s mention in a recent scientific presentation by Russian astronomers and Italian researcher Claudio Maccone

    A report by the Russian news agency Tass suggests that the signal might have come from a Russian military satellite.

    As the RAS writes, “It can be said with confidence that no sought-for signal has been detected yet.”

  5. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Alien signal detected by Russian astrophysicists turns out to be terrestrial disturbance

  6. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Secret spy sat scrambled SETI search
    Secret until now, that is

    Stand down, one and all: there’s not even cool new science in this week’s “alien signal”, let alone a SETI success: the signal seems to have come from a Russian military satellite.

    The odd signal turned up over the weekend: an 11 GHz picked up by Russia’s RATAN-600 telescope.

    The original observation, it was thought, might have originated from a star system called HD164595; if it had, it would have represented a stupendous energy output.

    Organisations like the SETI Institute were cautious from the start, calling the signal “interesting”

    “Subsequent processing and analysis of the signal revealed its most probable terrestrial origin”, the observatory remarks.

    “an additional check showed that it was emanating from a Soviet military satellite, which had not been entered into any of the catalogs of celestial bodies”


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