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View Poll Results: Do you think drawing this attention to Earth would be such a good idea?
Yes 1 10.00%
No 9 90.00%
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  #1  
Old 11-08-2018, 02:35 PM
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Default Researchers want to use lasers to contact aliens and help bring them to Earth

Scientists want to build a laser that could guide an extraterrestrial civilization and bring them to Earth.

A new research paper from an MIT graduate student suggests that humanity could theoretically build an infrared laser that could be both hot and bright enough to attract the attention of intelligent civilizations, if it was aimed at nearby exoplanets. James Clark, the study's lead author, believes it would "certainly attract attention."

“This would be a challenging project but not an impossible one,” Clark said in a statement. “The kinds of lasers and telescopes that are being built today can produce a detectable signal, so that an astronomer could take one look at our star and immediately see something unusual about its spectrum. I don’t know if intelligent creatures around the sun would be their first guess, but it would certainly attract further attention.”

The study, which has been published in The Astrophysical Journal, cautions that the probability of contact is low with current methods and technology, but advances in the coming years could make it possible.

"While the probability of closing a handshake with even a nearby extraterrestrial intelligence is low with current survey methodologies, advances in full-sky surveys for SETI and other purposes may reduce the mean-time-to-handshake to decades or centuries, after which these laser systems may close links at data rates of kbps–Mpbs," the study's abstract reads. "The next major gap to address for searching for extraterrestrial lasers is in expanding spectral searches into the infrared, where most terrestrial communication and high-power lasers are manufactured."

The research suggests that a laser, 1 to 2 megawatts in strength and coming from a telescope at least 100 feet in length, aimed into space, could get the attention of civilizations as far as 20,000 light years from Earth.

“If we were to successfully close a handshake and start to communicate, we could flash a message, at a data rate of about a few hundred bits per second, which would get there in just a few years,” Clark added in the statement.

Despite the excitement of building a laser shooting 20,000 light-years away, there are inherent safety issues, Clark said, including the inherent power created by the laser
(a flux density of about 800 watts of power per square meter, which is near that of the Sun) and the prospect of the beam damaging people's vision if they look directly at the beam, even if it isn't visible.

“If you wanted to build this thing on the far side of the moon where no one’s living or orbiting much, then that could be a safer place for it,” Clark added. “In general, this was a feasibility study. Whether or not this is a good idea, that’s a discussion for future work.”

Ultimately, Clark and the study's co-author, Kerri Cahoy, believe that a telescopic beacon could help contact aliens if it were to help make the Sun look odd, effectively emitting a flash, causing any intelligent civilization to sit up and take notice.

“With current survey methods and instruments, it is unlikely that we would actually be lucky enough to image a beacon flash, assuming that extraterrestrials exist and are making them,” Clark noted. “However, as the infrared spectra of exoplanets are studied for traces of gases that indicate the viability of life, and as full-sky surveys attain greater coverage and become more rapid, we can be more certain that, if E.T. is phoning, we will detect it.”

What could go wrong?

https://www.foxnews.com/science/rese...-them-to-earth
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Old 11-08-2018, 03:01 PM
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Default Re: Researchers want to use lasers to contact aliens and help bring them to Earth

If we're only advanced enough to send out a laser but they're advanced enough to come visit us, they are seriously superior. If they're that superior, they probably already know we're here.

Not a good idea. Watch the movie Battleship. They sent out a laser and they came. Their intentions were not good.
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Old 11-08-2018, 06:00 PM
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Default Re: Researchers want to use lasers to contact aliens and help bring them to Earth

With billions of galaxies, with billions of planets, our solar system being relatively young. the odds are very high that other life forms have already been here. They may still be here. Maybe we're it.
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Old 11-08-2018, 07:21 PM
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Default Re: Researchers want to use lasers to contact aliens and help bring them to Earth

And aim it where? Christ - a million light years away is a million years ago. Think about it.
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Old 11-08-2018, 08:19 PM
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Default Re: Researchers want to use lasers to contact aliens and help bring them to Earth

If there was life out there they would have been here by now. We have been beaming radio signals for over 100 years and I Love Lucy shows for over 60. There are 586 stars within 100 light years of Earth. So far, nada, zip, crickets.

My take is we are going to have to look high and low just to find other life let alone any Luke Skywalkers.
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Old 11-08-2018, 08:23 PM
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Default Re: Researchers want to use lasers to contact aliens and help bring them to Earth

Quote:
Originally Posted by bczoom View Post
If we're only advanced enough to send out a laser but they're advanced enough to come visit us, they are seriously superior. If they're that superior, they probably already know we're here.

Not a good idea. Watch the movie Battleship. They sent out a laser and they came. Their intentions were not good.
The most outlandish things about that movie was how those oldtimers got those 600lb super heated steam boilers running and finding all that powder on board to fire those 16" rifles. Not to mention how those main shafts would vibrate every filling out of your teeth after not turning for almost 30 years.
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Old 11-09-2018, 12:08 AM
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Default Re: Researchers want to use lasers to contact aliens and help bring them to Earth

I'm a speculative fiction fan, so I don't watch SF movies as a rule; they're uniformly quite bad! The last one I watched - because someone else wanted to see it - was the Awesome and Phantastic Classic ... Howard the Duck!!

However, if you'll recall, both Howard and the Deadly Evil Villain came to Earth via a Laser beam. Maybe this isn't such a good idea.
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Old 11-09-2018, 08:29 AM
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Default Re: Researchers want to use lasers to contact aliens and help bring them to Earth

Quote:
Originally Posted by waybomb View Post
And aim it where? Christ - a million light years away is a million years ago. Think about it.
And that laser beam would take another million years to get there.
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Old 11-09-2018, 11:41 AM
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Default Re: Researchers want to use lasers to contact aliens and help bring them to Earth

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Originally Posted by waybomb View Post
And aim it where? Christ - a million light years away is a million years ago. Think about it.
Actually, the beam would arrive a million years in the future!

Quote:
Originally Posted by mla2ofus View Post
And that laser beam would take another million years to get there.
Mike
As noted above.
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Old 11-09-2018, 11:48 AM
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Default Re: Researchers want to use lasers to contact aliens and help bring them to Earth

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Originally Posted by bczoom View Post
If we're only advanced enough to send out a laser but they're advanced enough to come visit us, they are seriously superior.
And that is why it is a really, really bad idea. Sometimes these scientists need to step in to the real world. Just because you can doesn't always mean that you should.
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