Researchers had learned about the reddish, mysterious space rock last year when it was discovered by the PAN-STARRS1 telescope in Hawaii last October 19, 2017. Scientists have called it “Oumuamua,” a Hawaiian name for “a messenger from afar arriving first.”
The name showcases Oumuamua’s exclusive background: it is the first direct proof of an object, which originated a different star system and, which has passed through the solar system, according to the associate administrator for Science Mission Directorate of NASA, Thomas Zurbuchen.
The peculiar, seemingly cigar-like shape, as well as orbital storage characteristics of Oumuamua, prompted some people to think whether it was an interstellar spacecraft. Thus, researchers have decided to assess the data for signals, which might tell the presence of intelligent life connected with Oumuamua.
To research, the astronomers opted for the Murchison Widefield Array, a telescope situated in the remote Murchison region of Western Australia, far away from the buzz of radio interference and human activity. The researchers looked back at data generated by the Murchison Widefield Array through November, December and earlier in January when Oumuamua was between fifty-nine million and three-hundred thirty-six million miles from the planet.
In specific, the astronomers verified for radio transmissions coming from the approximately quarter-mile-ling Oumuamua between the frequencies of seventy-two and one-hundred-two megahertz, a range, which is the same to the frequencies utilized in FM radio broadcasts.
According to the researchers who issued the study, those transmitter powers are well within the abilities of human technologies and thus reasonable for alien civilizations.
The outcomes added more proof that Oumuamua isn’t a complicated alien ship – or if it indeed it is, it is not talking about such frequencies. Instead, it is most likely the fragment of a comet, which lost more of its surface water after being blasted by cosmic rays on its long journey through interstellar space.
Although the team did not hear any transmissions, which may have been generated by intelligent alien life, the study was a crucial step in the hunt for extraterrestrial intelligence. According to Steve Tingay, the deputy executive director of the ICRAR, if advanced civilizations do exist elsewhere in the galaxy, they can speculate that they might have the ability to launch a spacecraft over interstellar distances and that those spacecraft may utilize radio waves to communicate.
There could be over 46 million interstellar objects crossing the solar system each year. Most of these are too far for the Murchison Widefield Array to examine, but future telescopes could help them assess these interstellar interlopers.