New tool for finding alien life

New tool for finding alien life

Is there another civilization in the Universe with the same advanced technological progress as on Earth? To answer this question, the scientist Claudio Grimaldi, in collaboration with the University of California, Berkeley, developed a statistical model to search for signals that can come from a rational society. His method will make the search cheaper and effective.

Initially, Grimaldi was not interested in astrophysics and concentrated on the physics of condensed matter. His research included calculating the probabilities of using carbon nanotubes that replace electrons. But the thought came to him: “If nanotubes were stars, and electrons were signals from an extraterrestrial civilization, then is it possible to calculate the probability of their detection more accurately?”.

This is not an exorbitant fantasy, as the researchers considered this possibility for more than 60 years. Several research projects related to the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI) started in the late 1950s. The idea is that an advanced civilization on an alien planet is capable of generating electromagnetic signals, and earth scientists can collect these signals using the latest high-performance radio telescopes.

Despite significant achievements in radio astronomy and an increase in computing power, none of the projects have so far achieved significant changes. It was possible to record several signals, but there is no evidence of the presence of aliens. However, scientists do not give up. SETI again shows interest, as it has recently discovered many exoplanets with the potential for life. There is a network of radio telescopes in South Africa and the activity of Russian entrepreneur Yuri Milner, who supports the project Breakthrough Listen, which should cover 10 times more sky than was possible before. The advantage of the Grimaldi statistical model is that it allows researchers to interpret both success and failure in the search for life at various distances from Earth. Here, the Bayens theorem is used to calculate the probability of detecting a signal in a given radius around our planet. But this does not mean that there is no life there, just our telescopes may not be as powerful as they are.

Taking into account factors like the size of the galaxy and the density of stars, Grimaldi believes that the probability of detecting a signal becomes insignificant within a radius of 40,000 light years. However, while scientists were able to record signals only within a radius of 40 light years. Let's not forget that such search methods will not be able to notice civilizations that are at the initial stage of development.

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