Tuesday, 23 May 2017 04:14

Astronomers are freaking out that this star is ‘flashing’


A distant star has begun exhibiting the same strange behavior that led astronomers to suggest an “alien megastructure” is orbiting it.

Tabby’s Star first attracted the world’s attention last year when stargazers suggested the distinctive “blinking” of its light was caused by a gigantic spaceship passing in front of it.

Now the star is blinking again and astronomers have trained their telescopes on it in the hope of finally cracking the mystery.

It’s also been suggested the behavior could be caused by comets passing in front of the star, which has the scientific name KIC 8462852 and is about 1,300 light-years from Earth.

Jason Wright, the man who first suggested Tabby’s Star was home to an alien megastructure, sent out a tweet calling on fellow astronomers to point their telescopes at the star.


“As far as I can tell, every telescope that can look at it right now is looking at it right now,” Matt Muterspaugh, a professor at Tennessee State University, told The Verge.

It’s been suggested Tabby’s Star could be home to a Dyson sphere.

These theoretical “megastructures” were dreamed up in the 1960s, when Freeman Dyson and Nikolai Kardashev suggested an advanced civilization would inevitably seek to build a huge structure around a star to harvest its massive power.

“Aliens should always be the very last hypothesis you consider,” Wright told The Atlantic after the discovery was first announced.

“But this looked like something you would expect an alien civilization to build.”

Last week, an astronomer suggested huge extraterrestrial constructions could be relatively easy to spot, so long as we look in the right place using the correct tools.

Zaza Osmanov from the Free University of Tbilisi, Georgia, suggested these gigantic solar power plants might be relatively easy to spot using current technology.

Source: This article was published nypost.com By Jasper Hamill


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