Research: Aliens in 1,000 nearby stars can see us
New research suggests that there are about 1000 star systems, if any, that aliens could watch from afar.
This 1.004 star system is in a direct line of sight to our planet and is close enough to us that they can detect not only planet Earth but also chemical traces of Earth's life.
Over the past decade, astronomers have found exoplanets orbiting distant stars using a simple formula: Take a look at a star and wait for it to suddenly darken. This blackening is the sign of a planet passing between the star and the telescope. Analyzing how the light changes as the star darkens can reveal the chemical content of the planet's atmosphere.
However, this method only works for planets whose orbits take them between their host stars and Earth.
In a new article, researchers inverted this formula and asked the question: Which nearby stars were correctly ordered for residents to see the earth passage in front of the sun? Can any life form in these star systems detect our traces, the creatures on the Earth's surface? The answer turned out to be 'yes' for many nearby stars.
What if the aliens have their own JWST (James Webb Space Telescope)? The researchers found that within 326 light-years there were 1,004 viewpoints for detecting the Earth. Of these, 508 have viewing angles that will give them at least 10 hours of observational data every time the Earth passes between this position and the sun - ideal conditions for detecting this small rocky planet and signs of life in its atmosphere.
Astrophysicist Joshua Pepper from Lehigh University said: "Only a very small fraction of the exoplanets will be randomly aligned to our field of view so we can see them transiting.
Researchers estimate that about 5 percent of 1004 stars are too young for intelligent life to evolve, even when orbiting a planet with habitable conditions. But the remaining 95 percent belongs to the categories of stars that can sustain billions of years; Earth's experience suggests that, assuming the conditions are right, intelligent life is long enough to evolve.
Most of the stars in the list are at the far end of the 326 light-year range; Because the closer we get to our solar system, the smaller the area where the Earth's transit can be seen. But the closest star on the list is only 28 light-years away. There are several other nearby stars on their way to the region where they can see Earth over the centuries. Some of them are bright enough to be seen from Earth in the sky.
The two stars in the list have known exoplanets. And only 12 light-years from Earth, a red dwarf with exoplanets known as Teegarden's star is now Earth & #