Are we being watched ? Image Credit: NASA Goddard Conceptual Image Lab
A new paper has put forward the idea that an alien civilization may have been watching us for millennia.
Writing in his recently published paper entitled 'Looking for Lurkers: Co-Orbiters as SETI Observables', Dr. James Benford at Microwave Sciences in Lafayette, California has suggested that if a sufficiently advanced extraterrestrial civilization wanted to observe us, the most obvious place to observe from would be a co-orbital or 'companion' asteroid which follows a similar orbital path to the Earth.
From such a vantage point, he argues, a robotic space probe could watch our planet for thousands of years without us ever being aware of its presence.
Powered by solar energy from the sun, these 'lurker' probes could stream vast quantities of data about our technology and culture back to their creators on some distant alien world.
"Perhaps probes are waiting on these objects, listening to us and waiting for us to find them," wrote Dr. Benford. "They may remain silent and simply report back to wherever they communicate to."
On the flip side however, he argues, if we fail to find such a probe it may mean nobody is out there.
"If we find nothing there, this gives us a profound result: no one has come to look at the life of the Earth, which has been evident in our atmosphere in spectral lines over interstellar distances for over a billion years," he wrote.
Source: Forbes | Comments (22)