In 2016, netizens launched a real debate about whether aliens are trying to contact us. It's all about the radio signal coming from a star that is 95 light years away from us. Maybe we finally get a signal from intelligent life?
Unfortunately, we are still alone. SETI researchers who are watching the signal and the star have reported that this is not a message from the aliens. But all this talk about extraterrestrial life again drew attention to the Kardashev scale. This is a method of categorizing the technical progress of a reasonable civilization. In 1964, Nikolai Kardashev created a spectrum that measures the ability of a species to use energy and communicate with someone in the Universe.
There are three types of civilization on the Kardashev scale:
- I type: civilization is able to use and store all the available energy produced by the native star. People still have not reached this stage (rather, the zero type), but we are moving towards this goal. We get sunlight and transform it into useful energy. As the ways of using this energy improve, humanity will be able to learn how to control all the processes on the planet. For example, you can control the weather. It is believed that we will become a type I civilization in the next couple of centuries. Energy consumption ranges from 4 x 10 16 to 4 x 10 17 watts. - II type: civilization is able to use all the energy of a star and transfer it to another planet or large-scale technological structure. A classic example is the Dyson Sphere. It is a megastructure covering a star from pole to pole and receiving all its energy that is delivered to the planet. Such a huge amount of energy would make humanity almost invulnerable. Any space or alien attack would have been struck by a single concentrated beam. Energy consumption is 4 x 10 26 W.
- III type: civilization is able to control all the energy of a native galaxy. This is an incredibly advanced species that has managed to colonize billions of star systems and has established a kind of power plant near each star. Interstellar travel has become an ordinary procedure. Energy consumption is 4 x 10 37 W.
The scale seems arbitrary, but for SETI researchers it allows us to imagine what can be observed if we once encounter aliens trying to get in touch.
Do you remember Tabbi's star, who hinted at the possibility that aliens built a megastructure around its orbit? Most likely, the aliens have nothing to do with it, and the strange activity is explained by something else. But, if this were so, then we would have a type II civilization. When it comes to the new signal from HD164595, the artificial origin alludes to the presence of a civilization of type I or type II. Signal strength hints at something powerful, like an isotropic beacon (a hypothetical device capable of emitting a radio signal in all directions).
METI President Douglas Wakoh says:
“This scale is useful if we theorize the presence of an extraterrestrial mind. For example, if there is a civilization that sends signals in all directions from a distance of 94 light years, then these are quite developed representatives of life. Most likely, they managed to create a Dyson sphere and then we had type II. If they are focused only on the Earth, then it can be I type ”.
In fact, if the signal comes from aliens, then the type of civilization depends on whether they tried to specifically reach the Earth or send a signal throughout the Universe. If this is the first option, then the aliens are somewhere on our level, but much smarter, since they guessed that there could be life in the solar system. If the second option, then this advanced aliens who may be hostile. Then it is better not to answer ...