Controversy sparked among scientists around the world after these past few days’ discoveries, because a different type of light show on a distant planet leads to alien life belief. The play on the word “sparked” is intentional, as astronomers have found the lights to be very distinct from what they normally find, which might mean an intentional altered environment.
The star in question has been named KIC 8462852. And scientists currently involved in the project of searching for new planets using the famous Kepler telescope say that indeed it does present a curious, never before met “light curve”.
It also doesn’t look like what they call a “normal exoplanet”. In more unscientific terms, an exoplanet is a celestial body that orbits a star other than our Sun. Close to 2000 of them have been spotted and classified since 1988, but this particular one, KIC 8462852, does not seem to fit the classical pattern .
The light show, as explained to us by scientists, means that, usually, the light on one of these exoplanets dims and increases visibly to us from Earth via the Kepler telescope. This is due to another planet passing in front of it. Therefore, the changes in light are fairly easy to predict and understand. However, in this particular case, the light seems to be going almost on and off at irregular intervals.
And this has no apparent reasons. Scientists argue that even if a planet the size of Jupiter, which is the biggest in our solar system would be passing regularly in front of KIC 8462852, it still wouldn’t cause this effect. The idea, then, would be that the light show we are seeing may have been altered.
Even so, the specialists say it would be rash to jump to any conclusions and consider immediately that aliens might be the puppeteers behind the stage. Since this is unprecedented, absolutely any scenario might be the cause of the problem including, scientists have taken into consideration, a problem with the Kepler telescope itself.
However, astronomer Jason Wright, with Penn State University, strongly believes in unnatural alteration of the environment and is currently cooking up a paper on his theory. He states that, considering the data, which should not be dismissed so easily as technical problems, might actually show there are some solar energy panels belonging to an alien race on the distant planet.
But, although fascinating, his theory seems improbable still. Other scientists were quick to remind him of another such example of star which seemed to present the same freak light show, but which turned out to be a five star system. Not as glamorous as alien solar panels, but closer to the truth.
Image Source: www.nasa.gov