With today's tech, we could send signals that could potentially be seen across the universe

05/23/2016 - 23:45

Shelly Leachman

Looking up at the night sky — expansive and seemingly endless, stars and constellations blinking and glimmering like jewels just out of reach — it’s impossible not to wonder: Are we alone?

For many of us, the notion of intelligent life on other planets is as captivating as ideas come. Maybe in some other star system, maybe a billion light years away, there’s a civilization like ours asking the exact same question.

Imagine if we sent up a visible signal that could eventually be seen across the entire universe.


Ref: The Search for Directed Intelligence. arXiv - Astrophysics > Instrumentation and Methods for Astrophysics (17 May 2016) | arxiv.org/abs/1604.02108 | PDF


We propose a search for sources of directed energy systems such as those now becoming technologically feasible on Earth. Recent advances in our own abilities allow us to foresee our own capability that will radically change our ability to broadcast our presence. We show that systems of this type have the ability to be detected at vast distances and indeed can be detected across the entire horizon. This profoundly changes the possibilities for searches for extra-terrestrial technology advanced civilizations. We show that even modest searches can be extremely effective at detecting or limiting many civilization classes. We propose a search strategy that will observe more than 10 12 stellar and planetary systems with possible extensions to more than 10 20 systems allowing us to test the hypothesis that other similarly or more advanced civilization with this same capability, and are broadcasting, exist.