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Physicist: alien probes may be too small to see

October 25, 2019 | Comment icon 17 comments

What if alien visitors were microscopic ? Image Credit: CC BY 4.0 ESO / S. Brunier
One scientist has proposed a possible new explanation for why we have yet to encounter intelligent alien life.
The question of whether we are alone in the universe remains one of the biggest philosophical conundrums of our time. While it seems almost inconceivable that our civilization is alone in the cosmos, the fact still remains that we have yet to see any evidence to the contrary.

The Fermi paradox, which highlights the contradiction between the likely existence of extraterrestrial civilizations and the fact that we have still never encountered any, seems to suggest that either there are no aliens out there, or they are so rare that it is unlikely we would ever come across them.

But what if there was another explanation ?

According to astrophysicist Zaza Osmanov from the Free University of Tbilisi in Georgia, the answer could actually be incredibly simple - what if alien probes were so small that we can't see them ?

There seems to be an unwritten assumption that any extraterrestrial visitors we encounter have to be similar in size to ourselves, but this may not be the case. Even if the aliens themselves were comparable in size to a human, their exploratory spacecraft may not be.
It is reasonable to conceive of tiny, perhaps even microscopic space probes traveling the stars.

Osmanov maintains that such small spacecraft could harvest hydrogen atoms floating around in interstellar dust for power and would be a lot more efficient than their full-size counterparts.

It would also be a lot easier for such devices to self-replicate and thus explore larger regions of space.

While spotting such machines might seem next to impossible, Osmanov believes that if we were looking directly at a swarm of them, we may be able to pick up their luminous emissions.

As things stand however, there is no evidence that anything like this has ever visited Earth.

Source: Science Alert | Comments (17)

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #8 Posted by highdesert50 2 years ago
Far easier to accelerate small masses and then mesh network to dynamically self-configure dependent upon situation.
Comment icon #9 Posted by Matt221 2 years ago
While I like the idea of teeny little probe I can't say as I'd want a swarm of them to enter me.
Comment icon #10 Posted by the13bats 2 years ago
"If" this theory is the case and "if" they are nano then who knows if they dont "gang up" we all might be getting probed and not even know it.
Comment icon #11 Posted by Matt221 2 years ago
Now I'm wondering are the you all mosquitos who come and get you in summer or are they probing Aliens?
Comment icon #12 Posted by the13bats 2 years ago
I'm in Floriduh, a swamp and our mosquitos are too big to be nano stealth alien probes.
Comment icon #13 Posted by INDY JONES 2 years ago
What do you think about this news... Police are investigating the apparent abduction at gunpoint of a woman in Richmond Hill, Ont. Home surveillance video shows a man stepping out of a car, carrying what appears to be a handgun, threatening to kill the woman before pulling her toward the vehicle. *snip*
Comment icon #14 Posted by Desertrat56 2 years ago
What does that have to do with microscopic alien probes?
Comment icon #15 Posted by the13bats 2 years ago
I was thinking that too...
Comment icon #16 Posted by Matt221 2 years ago
Not just me then
Comment icon #17 Posted by Brooksey 2 years ago
Of course there's intelligent life out there, we're just not intelligent enough to find it!!

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