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There could be a lot of hostile civilizations in outer space

It could be an advanced civilization encounter like when the Native Americans met Columbus. Nothing good came out of it either. “
(Stephen Hawking)

Are we alone in the universe? Probably not, but it is not the only question astrophysicists exploring the depths of the universe are looking for answers to. As the means of modern science and technology are getting closer and closer to the possibility of discovering extraterrestrial life, so are the questions associated with it.

We do not yet know how many alien civilizations can hide in the depths of outer spaceSource: Wikimedia Commons / Anttler

Would actors of a highly developed, hypothetical distant civilization act like Steven Spielberg’s classic, “Close Encounters of the Third Kind,” that is, friendly, benevolent aliens who visit Earth? Some say yes, but there are a good number of

Who said that such contact would have tragic consequences for human civilization.

Regarding the launch of the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) on October 31 this year, Japanese theoretical physicist Michio Kaku said it would be a “terrible idea” to connect with an alien civilization higher than Earth.

Mirror of the James Webb Space TelescopeSource: NASA

(The main function of the James Webb Space Telescope will be to observe Earth-like exoplanets, including in the infrared range, on which life can be visualized in theory.)I think the chances are great enough for us to make contact with an alien civilization“Kaku said to The Guardian.”I have colleagues who think we should address them. I think that’s a bad idea. “Michio Kaku is not alone in his anxiety.

Cosmic “ears” hide signals from the depths of the universe

American astronomer Frank Drake was the first to convert a large radio telescope at the National Observatory of Radio Astronomy in Greenbank, Virginia in 1960 into two star systems relatively close to the Solar System, Tau City and Epsilon Eridani, as a very advanced space effect. Civilizations.

American astronomer Frank Drake in a photo taken in 2017. Drake was the first to search through a radio telescope for traces of strange civilizations.Source: Wkimedia Commons / Amalex5

Although Drake’s observations were unsuccessful, this early attempt led to the creation of the SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) Institute, which studies the effects of extraterrestrial civilizations. The institute in Mountain View, California is looking for traces of potential radio signals from distant alien planets outside the solar system. The SETI search program relies on the assumption that

Earth-like civilizations may have formed in other star systems,

And like earthly civilization, it emits a large number of electromagnetic signals of artificial origin that can be received from Earth.

Radio telescopes scan the depths of the universeSource: Wikimedia Commons

Andrew Simeon, director of the Berkeley SETI Research Center and lead expert on the Breakthrough Listen project, has been researching the universe since 2012 to discover signals from space technologies. “The search for extraterrestrial intelligence uses almost exclusively what we call the remote sensing methodologySimeon said inverse Online news portal. “Basically, with large telescopes, we are trying to detect a type of electromagnetic radiation that we know can only come from foreign technology.

Andrew Simeon, Director of Berkeley SETI Research Center and Lead Expert on the Breakthrough Listen ProjectSource: University of California, Berkeley

Therefore, the SETI method is based on the detection of special electromagnetic signals from the universe, and not on transmission to supposed extraterrestrials. “The search for an extraterrestrial intelligence is an almost exclusively passive activity– This is how Siemion summarized the essence of the SETI search method.

There can also be serious risks to cosmic communication

Others, however, believe that we should take an active and proactive approach to draw the attention of supposed extraterrestrial civilizations. This is the purpose of METI (Messaging ExtraTerrestrial Intelligence),

You want to be accessed by encoded signals sent to the universe to be found by aliens.

Space biologist Douglas Vakoche, director of the institute, says we are more likely to be on the path of supposed space civilizations if we not only “listen” but also actively seek to contact them.

METI’s head astrobiologist Douglas Vakoc says he’s actively seeking out contact with suspected strangersSource: Wkimedia Commons / Per Bifrost

However, some believe METI has a lot of responsibility with this method. Astronomer John Gertz, former director of SETI, has written a number of articles in which METI is highly critical of.

They are taking great risks on behalf of all of humanity without asking permission from humanity. “

Geertz is very critical of Inverse in this regard. Of course, we can inadvertently draw attention to ourselves, as in the past 100 years, since the spread of radio, a lot of signals have been radiated into the universe.

The ancient desire of mankind was to find a trace of an alien civilization. In the fantasy world, aliens appear as benevolent and deadly creatures, like the icon Ridley Scott in Alien (picture is one of the frames in Alien)Source: Wkimedia Commons / Source

If another civilization “looks” at Earth, it will almost certainly discover these signs that indicate that we are inadvertently leaking into space.“It identifies the problem that another technologically advanced civilization can be evil and hostile,” said Simeon, director of SETI Berkeley Research Center. “Stephen Hawking thinks the same about aliens.”

According to Stephen Hawking, more advanced alien civilizations could be dangerous to humanitySource:

According to one of the greatest theoretical physicists of the twentieth century, we can be nearly certain that other forms of life exist in the universe besides Earth. Hawking believed that there could be three main life forms in the universe; Microbial, Infernal and Intelligent Life.

The most advanced civilizations of ours will sooner or later arrive in the reserves of their planet,

And they became cosmic “nomads” searching for another livable home in the universe.

Galaxy M100. The universe as we know it consists of many billions of similar star citiesSource:

Hawking said that a date with such a highly advanced alien civilization would have a catastrophic effect on humanity, as he did on the indigenous people of America, an encounter with the Spanish invaders.

But how would interstellar travel be possible?

In addition to the hypothetical existence of foreign civilizations, another major problem that is currently unsolvable is the problem of interstellar or extragalactic space travel. (The former means space travel within the Milky Way, and the latter means space travel between interstellar cities and galaxies.) The two difficult limitations of interstellar travel are distance and time. Our closest galactic neighbor, Alpha Centauri, to the Solar System is about 4.2 light years from Earth.

An image of Alfa Centauri, 4.2 light-years away, is closest to usSource: Wikimedia Commons

Here are two examples to illustrate this distance. If we consider that the distance of 150 million kilometers between the Earth and the Sun is one meter, then in this model, Alpha Centauri would be about as far away from us as the actual distance between the Earth and the Moon, since we would have to travel 271,000 kilometers to reach it. Voyager-1, the first to leave the solar system, accelerated to a third cosmic speed

You have to fly 76,000 years,

To reach the outer limit of the Alpha Centauri system. The other big problem is the speed of light.

Technical illustration of the Voyager-1 spacecraftSource: Wkimedia Commons / NASA / JPL

The speed of light in a vacuum as an absolute physical constant is the propagation velocity of electromagnetic waves, which is approximated to 300 thousand km / s. (The exact value of the speed of light is 299,792.458 km / s.) As far as our current knowledge, no effect can propagate faster than this. One of the theses of Albert Einstein’s special theory of relativity, published in 1905, is that the speed of light in a vacuum, measured from any system of inertia, is constant in any direction, regardless of the speed of the detector or the light source. However, it follows that if the propagation of reactions has a maximum, then this applies to all inertial systems, and no object can move faster than this.

Albert Einstein and Nathan Rosen. They initially raised the theoretical possibility of wormholesSource: Wikimedia Commons

Interstellar travel, if it succeeded in accelerating the spacecraft and then slowing it down to a speed close to the speed of light, could take decades, or even thousands of years, for distant objects.

Even considering the time dilation, this is an almost insurmountable problem, as far as we currently know.

Another obstacle that seems insurmountable, even if we can accelerate an object (spaceship) to the speed of light, C At speed, the crowd becomes wave-like, that is, in the form in which it launched, neither the spacecraft nor its crew will exist anymore.

Currently, interstellar space travel is only found in science fiction creationsSource: Wkimedia Commons / Antonio Ciseri

Of course, an alien civilization must face the same problems if its representatives want to reach Earth. Some hypothesize that so-called Einstein-Rosen bridges and wormholes could be used by astronauts from space civilizations for time jumps.

Wormhole simulationForrás: David and Paulo Saluchi

The large distances in space-time could theoretically be bridged by inserting wormholes.

But this practice is also realistic here:

According to the calculations of John Archibald Wheeler and Robert Fuller in the 1960s, a wormhole collapses so quickly that not even a ray can penetrate it. Whether a highly developed distant civilization was able to fill in these problems is completely unknown as if and where it might be.

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