|» ||Closest 1,300 Stars Studied—No Aliens Found|
Some 1 million gigabytes of data was analyzed.
Called the most comprehensive Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) program ever undertaken, a recent survey of 1,327 nearby stars, which looked for signals from intelligent beings, found nothing. “There's no amazingly advanced civilizations trying to contact us with incredibly powerful transmitters,” said Danny Price, an astrophysicist at the U. of California, Berkeley and lead author of the paper which was published in The Astrophysical Journal.
However, Price evidently isn’t giving up hope of eventually finding an extraterrestrial civilization. He said there are many possible reasons for the failure of the program so far. Perhaps the search used the wrong frequencies or there was radio interference from Earth or humans are just using the wrong methods.
The search was part of a program called Breakthrough Listen Initiative, a $100-million effort financed by Yuri Milner, a Russian billionaire. This undertaking has the objective of scanning the skies looking for technosignatures, which would be transmissions or other signs signaling the existence of technological aliens. It relies on two powerful telescopes, one the Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope in West Virginia, and the other, the Parkes Telescope in Australia.
According to the data released, researchers analyzed 1 million gigabytes of data in both radio and optical wavelengths. All of the 1,327 stars studied are within 160 light-years of Earth. The scientists said they found several thousand promising signals during their search, but all of them turned out to be dead ends, such as noises from human-made satellites.
Jason Wright, an astrophysicist from Penn State University, was not involved in the program, but he was impressed by the commitment of the researchers to publicly release their data. “Anyone who thinks the team might have missed something can go over their results and see for themselves,” he said. Still, he insists all the searches for intelligent aliens so far are only a drop in the bucket when considering the entire universe. Finding extraterrestrials “would be one of the most important discoveries humankind would ever make,” he added.
Comment: A person shouldn’t underestimate how damaging to the case for evolution the failure to find alien civilizations appears to be. If it was so easy for life to appear naturally on Earth, as some evolutionists seem to believe, then why is there no evidence life has evolved on any other planet, given the millions of planets in the universe which some space scientists say are suitable for life? As long as life can be found only on Earth, that fact strongly suggests life requires a supernatural Creator and can’t evolve from nonliving matter. Of course, we know from the Bible that this is the case.
Some other researchers seem to admit that there is no evidence life has evolved on Earth when they propose life came to this planet from some other planet out there in the cosmos. That theory suffers too as long as there is no evidence of any other planet out there in the cosmos with life.
Most of us have heard of the Fermi Paradox. Even as early as 1950, Italian-American physicist Enrico Fermi was puzzled by the failure by that date to find evidence of aliens. He noted the billions of sun-like stars in the galaxy, the strong odds that many of these stars are much older than our Solar system, the probability many Earth-like planets with intelligent civilizations should be in existence, and the logical assumption that many of these civilizations, being much older, would have already developed interstellar travel, even to the point of traveling throughout the Milky Way. So, Fermi reportedly asked, “Where is everybody?” Some seven decades later secular scientists are still asking that question. So, for secularists, it’s not just a problem that we haven’t found extraterrestrial life. Even more important, if there are aliens they haven’t yet found us either, but by now they surely should have made their existence known.
As Christians, the “extraterrestrial life” we are most concerned about is in heaven. The criminal who was crucified with Jesus and became a believer experienced that extraterrestrial life even before the day of his crucifixion was over. “Then he said, ‘Jesus, remember me when you come in your kingdom.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Amen I tell you: Today you will be with me in paradise.’” (Luke 23:42-43, EHV). And all of us who have come to faith in Jesus as our Savior will experience that wonderful life too.
Reference: Adam Mann, “No Signs of Aliens in the Closest 1,300 Stars, Hunt Funded by Russian Billionaire Reveals,” Live Science [June 19, 2019]. (Photo of the Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope, from Wikipedia, by NRAO/AUI.)
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QUESTION OF THE DAY
Does exercise help people with pain?
People with hip, knee, ankle or foot pain who logged at least 60 minutes of moderate to brisk exercise a week were 86 percent less likely to develop a mobility disability, such as walking too slowly when crossing a street, according to a four-year study.
Source: “Health Wire,” Consumer Reports On Health (July, 2019), page 3.
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