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'Alien megastructure' star finally debunked


Posted on Friday, 5 January, 2018 | Comment icon 383 comments

It looks as though the phenomenon has a rather mundane explanation. Image Credit: NASA / Rick Guidice
Astronomers believe that they have finally solved the mystery of Tabby's Star's unusual dimming behavior.
Originally picked up between the constellations Cygnus and Lyra by the Kepler Space Telescope in 2009, the star known as KIC 8462852 has long proven to be something of an enigma.

Unlike most other planet-hosting stars which exhibit slight periodic dips when their planets pass in front of them, this one has been exhibiting extremely erratic dips indicative of a large, tightly packed assortment of matter in orbit around it.

The phenomenon gained particular fame when astronomer Jason Wright suggested that one possible explanation for it was the presence of a gigantic extraterrestrial structure in space.

Back in October however, it began to emerge that the most likely explanation for the star's peculiar dimming behavior was actually a large cloud of dust particles orbiting around it.

Now following further studies, it appears as though this is almost certainly the case.

"Dust is most likely the reason why the star's light appears to dim and brighten," said astronomer Tabetha Boyajian. "The new data shows that different colors of light are being blocked at different intensities. Therefore, whatever is passing between us and the star is not opaque, as would be expected from a planet or alien megastructure."

With the long-running mystery finally solved, she added:

"If it wasn't for people with an unbiased look on our universe, this unusual star would have been overlooked. I am so appreciative of all of the people who have contributed to this in the past year."

"It's quite humbling to have all of these people contributing in various ways to help figure it out."

Source: Big Think | Comments (383)

Tags: Alien Megastructure

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #374 Posted by qxcontinuum on 10 October, 2017, 13:43
well "we suspect to be a large cloud of dust" is different than; we observed or we saw a large cloud of dust ! ...  
Comment icon #375 Posted by Golden Duck on 10 October, 2017, 23:38
Yeah... but, that suspicion is based on a "smoking gun"... http://www.newsnation.in/science-news/aliens-megastructure-mystery-star-tabetha-boyajian-may-finally-be-settled-nasas-scientist-shocked-article-183932.html So what is your contention with "the smoking gun"?
Comment icon #376 Posted by Merc14 on 11 October, 2017, 0:35
You are truly one of a kind qx.   
Comment icon #377 Posted by bison on 11 October, 2017, 1:08
The authors of the scientific paper which reveals a dust-like spectrum for the gradual, long term dimming, are careful to admit that this does not explain the star's large, intermittant dips in brightness. Dust that remains in dense clumps, which this sort of dimming would require, is difficult to explain as an astrophysical phenomenon.      
Comment icon #378 Posted by Chrismoh67 on 14 October, 2017, 15:51
what about aliens instead of alien megastructure?what about some sort of space algae,or a swarm of creatures that feed of the energy of the star.unlikely,but haven't heard that theory.  
Comment icon #379 Posted by micky 32 on 14 October, 2017, 20:39
So the conclusion definately nothing to do with aliens? Shame... oh well,
Comment icon #380 Posted by Adampadum123 on 15 October, 2017, 1:09
It's definitely unusual.but without further evidence and study it's all just guess work.whos to say it's not an alien race throwing a massive party 
Comment icon #381 Posted by Orphalesion on 5 January, 2018, 17:21
Well poop, would have been exiting if it really had been some alien mega structure. Of course this was always the most likely outcome, still it's fun to hope and be exited.
Comment icon #382 Posted by seanjo on 5 January, 2018, 17:22
The simplest most logical explanations generally pan out.
Comment icon #383 Posted by odiesbsc on 6 January, 2018, 18:18
It's just like our sun. you can see it in the daytime and can't see it at night. So Where's the mystery? Foolishness off...


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