Aliens could map the Earth based on cell phone towers
Mobile phones are so ubiquitous that we no longer think about how
they work. The key to their operation is the sheer number of radio
cell towers cover a large percentage of the earth’s surface, especially
in densely populated areas, and they constantly transmit microwave
signals. Considering that all these cell towers are emitting all these
radio signals, it’s a funny question whether these signals can be
detected by an alien civilization.
The answer to this question was recently published
in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. The article
talks about how radio signals entering space have changed over time.
the 20th century, the bulk of radio broadcasts were from commercial
radio and television stations. Now these transmissions are negligible
compared to mobile communications. Military radar transmissions are
still the most powerful source of radio leakage from Earth, but cell
towers are now in second place.
cell tower emits a radio signal with a power of 100-200 watts. Given
the number of towers and the amount of radio leakage, this amounts to
several gigawatts radiated into space. If we assume that an alien
civilization has advanced radio astronomy, then our transmissions should
be detected within a dozen light years or so.
But it depends on
where the aliens are. Cell towers radiate most of their radio signal
power parallel to the Earth’s surface, so the tower’s signal is
strongest when it’s going up or down.
And since most of the towers
are in the northern hemisphere, an alien star in the northern
hemisphere will receive a stronger signal than a star from the southern
Another complication is that all the signals from the
towers are different, and they overlap each other in such a way that an
alien civilization would not be able to distinguish any specific
don’t have to worry about aliens listening in on your private phone
calls. But they could still use the signals to learn some interesting
things about Earth.
Since the distribution of towers roughly
corresponds to the distribution of our population, aliens could measure
the Earth’s rotation and axial tilt. They would also have a measure of
the distribution of land on Earth, and over time they could study how
our population is distributed.
As an example, the team simulated
the signals seen from three nearby stars. Alpha Centauri is in the
southern hemisphere, but only 4 light years away, so it should be
receiving a tangible signal from us.
Barnard’s Star (6 light years
away) and HD 95735 (8 light years away) are in the northern hemisphere
and could also receive good radio data from Earth. All three of these
star systems are known to have planets, although none of them has a
potentially habitable world.
humanity transitions to more advanced mobile technologies such as 5G,
tower signals will become even stronger, meaning more nearby stars will
“see” the signal from Earth. It’s only a matter of time before our phone
signals reach and touch alien intelligences.
Alien space debris stuck in Earth’s orbit, researchers say
Recently, a group of experts from Harvard University, led by physics
professor Avi Loeb, announced the possible presence of alien space
debris in Earth’s orbit, reports the Daily Star.
space research expert Professor Loeb is confident that the discovery of
such “interstellar objects could help expand our knowledge of possible
alien civilizations and technologies. A team of scientists is conducting
research to confirm that some of the objects in our orbit may be
connected to other star systems.
During an interview with Live
Science, Professor Loeb explained that these objects could enter the
solar system from interstellar space, defying Jupiter’s gravitational
pull and occupying limited orbits around the sun.
Some of them may
have technological origins similar to the probes sent by mankind into
interstellar space, such as Voyager 1 and Voyager 2, Pioneer 10 and 11
and New Horizons.
despite these interesting assumptions, Professor Loeb did not specify
what specific objects he was talking about. In his research report, he
notes that there could be “a significant number” of potentially
detectable objects in Earth’s orbit.
To confirm their assumptions,
the team of scientists uses computer simulations and the Vera Rubin
Observatory (Chile) with a high-resolution camera of 3.2 billion pixels.
This will allow for regular observations of the Southern sky and the
possibility of detecting several captured objects about the size of a
It is assumed that these interstellar objects passed through the
boundaries of the solar system and may carry unique information about
other civilizations and their technologies. If we could confirm the
origin of these objects, the mysteries that open before us, this would
be a real breakthrough in space exploration.
expresses hope that the new research will not only help expand our
knowledge of extraterrestrial technologies, but may also lead to the
discovery of new alien civilizations . Answers to such questions can be
of global significance and influence our understanding of the place of
mankind in the Universe.
while there are still many questions and assumptions, the study by
Professor Loeb and his team opens a new chapter in space exploration.
Each new discovery can be the key to deciphering the mysteries of the
cosmos and the possibility of encountering alien life forms.
Betelgeuse is acting strange again
Betelgeuse, a red giant on the brink of death, continues to show
unusual behavior. After the Great Blackout, which occurred in late 2019
and early 2020, the star became unusually bright. It is now the seventh
brightest star in the sky, while it normally ranks tenth. This has led
to speculation that Betelgeuse is preparing to explode in a
spectacularly large supernova.
However, scientists believe it’s too early to tell, and it’s likely
that this behavior is due to ongoing fluctuations after the Great
Blackout of 2019, and the star will return to normal within a decade.
Betelgeuse is one of the most interesting stars in the sky. It is
about 700 light-years from Earth and is a red giant in the last stage of
its life. It is also an unusual star for a red giant because it was
previously a monster blue-white O-type star, the most massive class of
Betelgeuse has changed its spectral type because it has almost
exhausted its hydrogen reserves. It now burns helium into carbon and
oxygen and has expanded to a gigantic size: about 764 times the size of
the Sun and about 16.5 to 19 times its mass.
Eventually it will run out of fuel to burn, become a supernova, eject
its outer material, and its core will collapse into a neutron star.
Before the Great Blackout, Betelgeuse also had periodic fluctuations
in brightness. The longest of these cycles is about 5.9 years and the
other is 400 days. But it seems that the Great Blackout caused changes
in these oscillations.
A new paper by astrophysicist Morgan McLeod of the
Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics has shown that the 400-day
cycle appears to have been halved. This pulsational cycle is probably
caused by expansion and contraction within the star. According to
simulations carried out by MacLeod and his colleagues, the convective
flow inside Betelgeuse may have risen and become material that separates
from the star.
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