Study Reveals New Trick For Hunting Alien Life
Hunting alien life has been one of the most exciting yet elusive endeavors of mankind. Now, astronomers reveal a new trick that may finally look for and communicate with aliens
The key is to look for them in the way they are probably looking for us.
How Astronomers Look For Alien Life
To look for alien life, astronomers use a technique called "transit method," which involves investigating the light changes that occur in parent stars when orbiting planets pass by.
The Kepler telescope of NASA is said to be the most efficient instrument to do just that.
Finding Each Other
If aliens do exist and also want to find us, they can detect the Earth by looking for the dimming of the sun, which signals Earth's travel. Such dimming may only be observed in the so-called "transit zone," which is said to house approximately 100,000 possible alien habitats.
Being able to discover eclipses or transits will encourage aliens to study the event and eventually discover that the Earth has an atmosphere that has undergone chemical changes due to life.
"They have a higher motivation to contact us, because they have a better means to identify us as an inhabited planet," says study author René Heller from the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research.
Such possibility would drive them to look for us and maybe send signals for communication. If we have a keen ear for listening, we may someday catch those signals and eventually find each other.
Now, the key to finding alien life follows the principles mentioned above. The authors suggest that for humans to discover alien life, quest projects must focus on the transit zones.
One good thing about this technique is it lessens the area of research, limiting the period of study completion to less than a human life span.
One alien life quest project where astronomers may apply this suggestion is the Breakthrough Listen Initiative. The $100 million, 10-year project is now using advanced radio receivers and looking for laser signals.
There are about 10,000 stars within the distance of 3,260 light years from Earth. Each of these stars may have planets that harbor alien life. The possibilities are indeed tremendous.