24/7 Space News
Can ET detect us
illustration only
Can ET detect us
by Staff Writers
Mountain View CA (SPX) May 03, 2023

What would the Earth look like to an alien civilization located light years away? A team of researchers from Mauritius and Manchester University has used crowd-sourced data to simulate radio leakage from mobile towers and predict what an alien civilization might detect from various nearby stars, including Barnard's star, six light years away from Earth. Ramiro Saide, currently an intern at the SETI Institute's Hat Creek Radio Observatory and M.Phils. student at the University of Mauritius, generated models displaying the radio power that these civilizations would receive as the Earth rotates and the towers rise and set.

Saide believes that unless an alien civilization is much more advanced than ours, they would have difficulty detecting the current levels of mobile tower radio leakage from Earth. However, the team suggests that some technical civilizations are likely to have much more sensitive receiving systems than we do, and the detectability of our mobile systems will increase substantially as we move to much more powerful broadband systems.

Saide is also excited by the fact that his simulations show that the Earth's mobile radio signature includes a substantial contribution from developing countries, including Africa. According to team leader Professor Mike Garrett (University of Manchester, Jodrell Bank Centre for Astrophysics), "the results highlight Africa's success in bypassing the landline stage of development and moving directly into the digital age." Garrett is pleased with the results.

"I've heard many colleagues suggest that the Earth has become increasingly radio quiet in recent years - a claim that I always contested - although it's true we have fewer powerful TV and radio transmitters today, the proliferation of mobile communication systems around the world is profound. While each system represents relatively low radio powers individually, the integrated spectrum of billions of these devices is substantial."

Dr. Nalini Heeralall-Issur, Saide's supervisor in Mauritius, thinks Saide might be right. "Every day we learn more about the characteristics of exoplanets via space missions like Kepler and TESS, with further insights from the JWST - I believe that there's every chance advanced civilizations are out there, and some may be capable of observing the human-made radio leakage coming from planet Earth."

The team is eager to extend their research to include other contributors to the Earth's radio leakage signature. The next step is to include powerful civilian and military radars, new digital broadcast systems, Wi-Fi networks, individual mobile handsets and the swarm of satellite constellations now being launched into low Earth orbit, such as Elon Musk's Starlink system. According to Garrett, "Current estimates suggest we will have more than one hundred thousand satellites in low Earth orbit and beyond before the end of the decade. The Earth is already anomalously bright in the radio part of the spectrum; if the trend continues, we could become readily detectable by any advanced civilization with the right technology."

"This work is a superb example of how a detailed analysis of the properties of human technology (the "anthropogenic technosphere") can be leveraged toward developing exciting, novel strategies for detecting extraterrestrial technologies," said Allen Telescope Array Project Scientist Dr. Wael Farah. "We look forward to using the unique instrumentation capabilities and scheduling flexibility of the Allen Telescope Array, paired with our growing knowledge of nearby exoplanet systems, to undertake new searches based on these strategies."

Research Report:Simulation of the Earth's radio-leakage from mobile towers as seen from selected nearby stellar systems

Related Links
SETI Institute
Lands Beyond Beyond - extra solar planets - news and science
Life Beyond Earth

Subscribe Free To Our Daily Newsletters

The following news reports may link to other Space Media Network websites.
AI joins search for ET
Toronto, Canada (SPX) Jan 31, 2023
Breakthrough Listen has reported the results from a new method of searching data driven by artificial intelligence. In a paper published in the journal Nature Astronomy, the team analyze 480 hours of data from the Green Bank Telescope (GBT) in West Virginia, and report eight previously undetected signals of interest that have certain characteristics expected of genuine technosignatures. The research, led by University of Toronto undergraduate student Peter Ma, who began working with the Breakthrou ... read more

US senators launch renewed push to thwart China

Russia to stay on International Space Station through 2028

Partners extend operation of International Space Station

Voyager will do more science with new power strategy

Falcon Heavy launches massive GEO satellite for Viasat

SpaceX launches first expendable Falcon Heavy rocket

A second pair of SES' O3b mPower satellites launched on a SpaceX rocket

Heavy thunderstorms force SpaceX to delay launch of Falcon Heavy rocket

New findings indicate gene-edited rice might survive in Martian soil

Ensuring robotic arm safety during abrasions

Sols 3812-3813: Tiny Sticks Poking Out at Us

Curiosity: Move slowly and don't break things: Sols 3810-3811

China to promote space science progress on five themes

China to develop satellite constellation for deep space exploration

China's space missions break new ground

Space exploration for betterment of humankind

Latest two O3b mPOWER satellites successfully launched for SES

CGI to extend machine learning to LEO satellite network optimisation

Viper and T-Rex on double rocket launch

Viasat confirms ViaSat-3 Americas set to launch

Innovative NASA alloy used for 3D printed rocket

Deep-learning system explores materials' interiors from the outside

Heed the reed: thatcher scientist on mission to revive craft

Researchers 3D print a miniature vacuum pump

Can ET detect us

A stormy, active sun may have kickstarted life on Earth

Scientists discover rare element in exoplanet's atmosphere

UGA researchers discover new planet outside solar system

Juice's first taste of science from space

Icy Moonquakes: Surface Shaking Could Trigger Landslides

Europe's Jupiter probe launched

Europe's JUICE mission blasts off towards Jupiter's icy moons

Subscribe Free To Our Daily Newsletters


The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2023 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. All articles labeled "by Staff Writers" include reports supplied to Space Media Network by industry news wires, PR agencies, corporate press officers and the like. Such articles are individually curated and edited by Space Media Network staff on the basis of the report's information value to our industry and professional readership. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Statement Our advertisers use various cookies and the like to deliver the best ad banner available at one time. All network advertising suppliers have GDPR policies (Legitimate Interest) that conform with EU regulations for data collection. By using our websites you consent to cookie based advertising. If you do not agree with this then you must stop using the websites from May 25, 2018. Privacy Statement. Additional information can be found here at About Us.