It Looks Like KIC 8462852 Probably Doesn’t Host an Alien Dyson Sphere After All

Saturday, 07 November 2015 - 11:44AM
Astronomy
Saturday, 07 November 2015 - 11:44AM
It Looks Like KIC 8462852 Probably Doesn’t Host an Alien Dyson Sphere After All
It was definitely a long shot, but when every geek and sci-fi enthusiast around the world heard that astronomers may have detected an extraterrestrial Dyson Sphere, they desperately hoped that it would be true. To no one's surprise, however, it looks like that's probably not the case.

KIC 8462852 was first hypothesized to have an alien megastructure surrounding it after unusual findings in regards to the star's brightness. During certain time periods, the star would dim drastically - much more than what would ever be expected by an orbiting planet in transit. Some speculated that it might be an extra terrestrial Dyson Sphere constructed by an advanced alien civilization attempting to harness the energy from a nearby star.

Upon hearing about this, SETI made it their goal to check out the star by monitoring it for radio signals. After a relatively thorough search, however, the scientists involved in the study came up empty handed, with a recent statement coming from the organization saying that there was "no clear evidence" of either of the two types of radio signals they were monitoring for.

SETI astronomer Seth Shostak had this to say:

Opening quote
The history of astronomy tells us that every time we thought we had found a phenomenon due to the activities of extraterrestrials, we were wrong […] But although it's quite likely that this star's strange behavior is due to nature, not aliens, it's only prudent to check things out.
Closing quote


While this may come as a disappointment to most alien enthusiasts, it should be duly noted that this doesn't 100% destroy the possibility that the weird readings scientist have received in regards to the star's brightness are caused by some type of alien megastructure. The types of radio signals that would come from nearby the star are apparently too hard for modern technology to detect. So basically, SETI has proven that no radio signals are being sent in the direction of Earth - not that there are no radio signals coming and going from near KIC 8462852 at all.

Of course, this simply opens up doors to unverifiable speculations and hypotheses about why an advanced alien civilization would or would not want their existence to be known by earthlings. While there's still a possibility that aliens have something to do with the strange dimming of KIC 8462852, Occam's Razor should most definitely be applied. More likely than not, the bizarre behavior of the star is caused by some natural process that scientists have yet to observe - not by aliens.
Science
Alien Life
Astronomy

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