Stephen Hawking Project Detects Possible Signs of Alien Life from Distant Galaxy

Breakthrough Listen- the initiative to find signs of intelligent life in the universe.


While working for Stephen Hawking’s Breakthrough Listen project, astronomers have detected mysterious signals that they think coming from alien life. Astronomers detected 15 fast radio bursts (FRBs) signals from an unknown source.

The signals were detected for more than 30-minute duration. It is still unclear that those signals were received whether from neutron stars, black holes or extraterrestrial technology across the universe.

This is not for the first time that scientists have detected such signals. Previously they have observed dozens of similar signals since the start of the project to discover the alien life in January 2016. But, as they last only a few milliseconds and radio telescopes can only monitor a small area of the sky at any given time, only one of these sources has been observed to repeat.

The source, known as FRB 121102, was discovered in 2012. But recent signals have a higher frequency than those. In 2015, it was the first FRB seen to repeat, ruling out theories of the bursts’ origins that involved the catastrophic destruction of the progenitor.

Breakthrough Listen postdoctoral researcher Vishal Gajjar said, “As well as confirming that the source is in a new active state, the high-resolution of the data obtained by the Listen instrument will allow measurement of the properties of these mysterious bursts at a higher precision than ever possible before.”

Andrew Siemion, director of the Berkeley SETI Research Center and of the Breakthrough Listen program said, “Whether or not fast radio bursts turn out to be signatures of extraterrestrial technology, Breakthrough Listen is helping to push the frontiers of a new and rapidly growing area of our understanding of the universe around us.”


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