Astronomers discover mysterious signals from a nearby red dwarf star

Geronimo Vena
Luglio 17, 2017

Odd signals emitted from a nearby star have been spotted by astronomers.

The red dwarf star - Ross 128 (GJ 447) - which is around 2,800 times dimmer than the Sun, is not yet known to have any planets, researchers said.

The source of the unusual signals seems to be a small, dim star located about 11 light-years from Earth.

"The star was observed for 10 minutes using the Arecibo Observatory - a massive radio telescope in a sink hole in Puerto Rico", Abel Mendez an astrobiologist from the University of Puerto Rico stated, Express reported.

However, Abel Mendez, an astrobiologist at the University of Puerto Rico at Arecibo said that the possibility that the odd signals came from intelligent extraterrestrial life can not be ruled out yet.

He told Business Insider: "The SETI [Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence] groups are aware of the signals".

Who or what is sending mysterious radio signals from a star lying 11 light years away?

Mendez says there are three main possibilities - that it could be flare-like emissions from the star, emissions from another object, or interference from a high-orbit satellite.

But, Mr Mendez said in a recent blog post that "we have never seen satellites emit bursts like that" and described the signals as "very peculiar".

"The field of view of (Arecibo) is wide enough, so there is the possibility that the signals were caused not by the star but another object in the line of sight", Mendez said.

A senior astronomer at SETI Institute named Seth Shostak explained that they were well aware of the signals and they wish to use California's powerful Allen Telescope Array to examine them. "If we don't get the signal again then the mystery deepens".

He said: "Success will be to find the signal again in the star but not in its surrounding [s]".

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