Irrelevant to the topic "how likely is this signal to be aliens".
Let me rephrase then, why would you generate energy to send a signal when it's much easier to "send smoke signals"?
If you think its "easy" to dim a star by 20%, I have bad news for you...
I don't and I think it's easier to block 20% of a star then it is to generate 20% of a star's light...
Well, sending signals would not require 20% of star's power output. Not even 0.0001% is necessary. With basic RF engineering, signal's power can be billions of times less than star's output. Since you have very tenuous grasp of this field, I fully expect to see more replies with more ideas why "smoke signals are better", however I won't be replying. Sorry.
I thank you for the magnitude estimate but I still wonder how the signal would survive a journey through traumatic space and be received and recognized, etc. Dimming a star just seems like a good lighthouse type signal that seems "doable". That's all I was getting at.
@jerromyjon: Arecibo can send signals that an Arecibo-like receiver could pick up from tens of light years away with sufficient data rate to note its artificial content (prime numbers or whatever) and transmit some basic data over a few days or whatever. Transmitting signals over 1500 light years would need a better sender, but it is still something we could design today (at immense cost, but within current technology). Blocking 20% or even 0.01% of the starlight in a coordinated way is completely out of reach for our current level of technology.
@Pdgenoa: If there is a Dyson sphere somewhere we can recognize it as made by aliens. No one doubts that.
But if there is no Dyson sphere, it doesn't mean there are no aliens. And that direction is the problem.
We can rule out the hypothesis "comet swarm" with more data. We cannot rule out the hypothesis "aliens". Falsifiability is one of the most fundamental principles of science, and the alien hypothesis is not falsifiable.
All of astronomy has "extraterrestrial" explanations except maybe some lunar and near earth orbits. Perhaps you intend to mean biological, sentient, or artificial?
I would be quite happy to see a model of a solid film forming in a vacuum and growing to planet size. Could be a valuable patent, certainly interesting.
Pluto-Charon looks like a planet formed by accretion. Hard to imagine a motive.
How dare you recall it a planet...
and what does that make nix and hydra...
I disagree that a "serious" contender is one that simply isn't outright impossible.
And also logical. Your support for your assertions so far has been "we can't rule it out therefor we should take it seriously". That's not how one does science. The "serious" contenders are the ones that we think are most probable based on our prior experience and current knowledge. That's where you start and that's where you begin to rule out the various possibilities.
Those are equivalent in many people's view.
Nonsense. We have hundreds of years of experience in explaining unknown phenomena and so far exactly zero of them have been attributed to extraterrestrials. On a list of possible explanations for the peculiar light curves of KIC 8462852, extraterrestrial aliens are so far down that they fall well outside the "serious" or "likely" sections. I'd put it in the "neat, but extremely unlikely" section at best.
Sentient extraterrestrial life.
I doubt that. And agree that there is a problem.
I can write about Dyson spheres because I do not have a telescope (at least not one worth mentioning). I do not have a lab. There is no budget for future projects that may be compromised by weird publicity. My employment would not be effected even if I was diagnosed insane or senile.
If you see evidence for a Dyson sphere the right thing to do is categorize it as a Vega type star. Then you should get more/better data. It would be a disservice to the public, your students, and/or your coworkers if you lose access. In the current social/political environment the right thing to do is not report what you believe you saw. Just document hard data so that someone in a future and less hostile environment can access your data and put together long term trends.
Note that KIC8462852 does not look like a Vega type star.
I get the joke but I want to point out that a "dwarf" planet is still a planet the same as a human with dwarfism is still a human
*additionally: suck it NDT!
R.I.P. formally planet known as Pluto in tribute to the artist formerly known as Prince...
No it isn't. Per the IAU:
Planets and dwarf planets are in two distinct categories. A dwarf planet is not a subtype of planet, despite what the name leads you to believe.
The star keeps dipping. A fourth dip started, at more than 1.5% and potentially still getting deeper.
I'm just wondering, what is our resolving power at those distances, i.e. what can we eliminate....
also is there any point in point an x-ray telescope at it?
Hubble has an angular resolution of ~0.05 arcseconds, at 1300 light years this corresponds to 20 AU. VLT in interferometry mode can reach 0.004 arcseconds, corresponding to 1.6 AU. This does not mean you could see anything a few AU away from the star, however: It is roughly a billion times brighter than possible planets.
ELT will get a 108 contrast for 0.03 arcseconds separation (~12 AU), if there is something bright far away from the star that could be visible. 2024+
The fourth dip is over, peak dimming was a bit more than 2%.
can something like this https://www1.lehigh.edu/news/‘styrofoam’-planet-may-help-solve-mystery-giant-planets
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