This has been in the news all week. Scientists have found exoplanet around Alpha Centauri-B. This planet is in highly close orbit around Alpha Centauri-B. While this planet it self does not support life in any form. It opens up the possiblity that Alpha Centauri-A and B might have planets with life on them. Earth has life and is not so unique in my view.
This also makes Alpha Centauri A and B prime targets for searching alien civilizations close to our own solar system. But Alpha Centauri is just 4.37 light years away from Earth. But that means any radio signals are just 4.37 months reaching Earth (give or take). This also makes for a better signal detection at this short distance. If there is any civilization on Alpha Centauri A or B we have no way of knowing it state of technical levels. They might be more advanced then us, or they might be less advanced then us. Or they might still be in caves and really primitive. There is no way to know for sure. There is also a possibility that just life might exist in Alpha Centauri A-B system. But without any civilization at all. There is also chance if there was a civilization in the Alpha Centauri A-B solar system that it is long gone for one reason or other. Whatever the case actually is. This planet is a good hope that more planets might exist just 4.37 light years away from Earth.
But one thing is clear. We are never going to know without science studies in that direction. It is also my view that we need to study our closest star better then we already do. This applies mostly to the stars that are close to our own sun in size and brightness. Since the chance of finding planets like our Earth is highest around such stars. Rather then larger and heavier stars. Like blue giants and such. In that case. I think there might be planets around Sirius (8.6 light years away). But I do not think any such planet is likely to have any life on them. But I might be totally wrong in this estimate. But the only way to find out for sure is to study space, as it is human race most important step into the future.
News about this discovery
Next Door Neighbors? Earth-Sized Planet Discovered in Nearest Star System to Us (Universe Today)
Exoplanet around Alpha Centauri is nearest-ever (BBC News)
Alpha Centauri 3 (Solstation)
Sirius 2 (Solstation)
Alpha Centauri (Wikipedia)
I did see in the news that scientists where looking for radio signals from the star Gliese 581. While there might be habitable planet around this star. I doubt there is any civilization located there. The reason is not that any planet there might not host life. The reason is what it takes life manage to go up to sentient level. The energy output from an red dwarf star is in my opinion just too small to make it. Some of the red dwarf class are so low in energy output that it would not even melt ice at good distance from it’s star.
I also believe the question about habitable zone around star is more then it’s distance compared to how bright it is. It certainly plays it’s role. I do not doubt that. But if a planet is too close to it’s star. Gravity is too strong for life to survive. if it is too far way, the planet get’s too cold. Too close, the planet also has the risk of facing just one side towards the sun and leaving the other part of the planet in eternal darkness. Something that would make life impossible to develop to any major level.
It is my opinion that best chance of finding life is around stars that are similar or same type as our sun. The universe is big and full of surprises. So I am in no doubt that intelligent life exist where I now consider impossible.
For many decades now there has been a group of human been searching for signs of civilizations out there. So far there has not been any luck with it. Why I do not know. But I do think that how this search is done might be wrong. That is searching just one band of 1420Mhz, or the Hydrogen line (wiki). While this frequency might be optimal for space travel, I do not believe that is being used on a planet. The reasons being the same as here on Earth. It is impractical for communications.
I base my suggestion on the space travel and 1420Mhz on the Wow signal that was detected in the year 1977.
To search for civilization it is my opinion that the search must be done on frequencies that we human already use. But the problem here is the local noise, that is transmitters on Earth. But I do not think that problem cannot be crossed with good mapping of the local area frequencies in use. Along with frequencies that might bonce off Earth atmosphere.
The estimated range for radio signal from Earth is about 20 light year according to this study here. So mapping of yellow stars and similar types of suns in that range should not be too difficult. As the nearby stellar neighborhood is well known and has been for a long time now. But the question that remains unknown is if there is a civilization out there, does it have the technology to broadcast strong radio signals out into space. It might well be that a civilization is out there, but it might be on a stage that is equal Earth in 19th Century, or something earlier. Or they might well have passed us on the technological level and have stopped broadcasting radio signals into space.
This are all questions we might not get answer to. But if a radio signal is found from a alien civilization is found. It might give us a great idea what is out there. But I am sure that getting that type of signal is not going to be easy. In fact, I am sure that it is going to be real hard to do so. But it is not impossible, just hard. I am up for that challenge from my point of view. I hope that others are too.
I find that there are enough space blogs that cover the natural phenomena that can be found in Space. But nobody covers this aspect of space, since it has been made ridiculous for many decades now. We might not be able to communicate with a alien civilization out there. But we sure can listen to them if we find there signal.
This is what I am going to do with this blog. It took me long term to figure out what to do with this blog. The course has now been set. I welcome all my new readers to this blog. You know now what this blog means and what it stands for. I hope that you enjoy to read this blog, as I have writing it.
A recent study that was done by Wesley Traub. But he estimates that there are about 34% with the error margin of +-14% of sun like stars with Earth like planets in there habitable zone. But this study has the potential for higher error rates, as it is only based on data from 136 days. But he also had to base his study on data from short period planets that are already known. But from what other media is reporting, it seems however that this study is all good.
But the hypothesis in this study means that there might be a lot of life out in the universe. But this does not equal that all of it is like humans and have developed a civilization. But all considered, I would say that chances of that are not too bad either.
New study: 1/3 of Sun-like stars might have terrestrial planets in their habitable zones (Bad Astronomy)