Wednesday, 20 June, 2018

Breakthrough Listen Launches Unprecedented Effort to Find Aliens

New way to measure gravity can spot alien life- The TeCake Breakthrough Listen Launches Unprecedented Effort to Find Aliens
Sandra Phillips | 10 May, 2018, 12:28

Stephen Hawking spearheaded a project called Breakthrough Listen (BL) with the sole intention of looking for intelligent alien life in the cosmos. A new hardware used by the Parkes Radio Telescope used by the Breakthrough Listen Initiative expands survey of the sky.

At the moment, the Breakthrough Listen program has reported that it has launched a research on a vast number of stars situated in our galaxy, by exploiting the newly revamped CSIRO Parkes Radio Telescope situated in New South Wales, in Australia.

Though the project has tapped the telescope since 2016 to look for alien life, the new search is being aided by the telescope's latest upgrade, which will use 13 "multibeams" to offer "a fast survey of large areas of the sky".

The new Parkes campaign will continue Breakthrough Listen's search at a whopping 130 gigabits per second - bandwidth that your laptop could only dream about. This represents over 100 million radio channels scanned for each of the 13 beams - one of the most comprehensive SETI (search for extraterrestrial intelligence) experiments carried out to date.

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By the end, the project aims to scan all the way to the Galactic Center. The project is surveying both the Milky Way galaxy and nearby galaxies as well.

"By trawling through these huge datasets for signatures of technological civilizations, we hope to uncover evidence that our planet, among the hundreds of billions in our galaxy, is not the only where intelligent life has arisen". In addition to increasing the speed and scope of the search, the new multibeam receiverwill also give scientists the ability to better distinguish between signals of interest and human-made signals, such as radio interference from airplanes, cellphones and satellites. Data will then be searched for signals that have indications of artificial origin. Since the project is signed up for 1,500 of observation times with Parkes telescope for this year, it could mean collecting around 100 petabytes of raw data, which is equivalent to over 5 million HD movies.

In August, the team also revealed they'd detected 15 mysterious signals coming from a galaxy 3 billion light-years away. Though the dense region around Milky Way's center hosts a supermassive black hole and makes up one of the worst places for life to thrive, the neighborhood targeted by the team hosts tens of millions of stars, with many lying between Earth and far from the point of chaos at the center.

Previously, Breakthrough Listen scientists listened for radio signals from 'Oumuamua (pronounced oh-MOO-ah-MOO-ah), the first interstellar object ever observed in our solar system.

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