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California: Radio signal coming from stellar system HD 164595 may be a sign of intelligent extraterrestrial life

The signals were coming from the Hercules constellation and based on the power of the signals and their frequency

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Radio telescopes of the Allen Telescope Array are seen in Hat Creek, Calif. Image source: VOA

September 3, 2016: Let’s imagine having to point out to a close friend they hadn’t actually won the lottery. You’d probably feel almost as bad as they would.

Well, that’s where we are.

Big news

Earlier this week, the web was aflutter with news that radio astronomers in Russia had picked up ‘surprisingly strong’ radio signals coming from a star cluster about 94 light years away.

The signals were coming from the Hercules constellation, and based on the power of the signals and their frequency, the buzz was that this be a message from really, really advanced aliens. Excited stargazers began throwing around phrases like “this could be a type II civilisation” and other such SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) arcana.

For clarity’s sake, civilisations can be classified by something called the Kardashev scale. It was created by an astronomer named — you guessed it — Kardashev, as a way to gauge the technological advancement of any civilisation.

Humans are almost a type I civilisation. That means we can store and use energy from our sun but still use fossil fuels. We’ll be classified as a fully type I when we go completely to renewable power.

A type II civilisation is one that can fully harness all the energy of their sun. That’s way beyond us, and since we’ve never found anyone else out in space, the Kardashev scale isn’t much more than a fun thought exercise. But it’s important in times like these because the strength of this mystery signal suggested an energy output on a stellar scale, far beyond us oil burners here on earth. That’s really cool, and a bit scary.

Bad news

And then, the Russians stepped forward and very thoughtlessly ruined everyone’s fun.

The news is a bit buried in a press release from the Russian Academy of Sciences. “…an interesting radio signal at a wavelength of 2.7 cm was detected in the direction of one of the objects (star system HD164595 in Hercules) in 2015,” it stated. So far so good.

And then this: “Subsequent processing and analysis of the signal revealed its most probable terrestrial origin.”

Darn!

Turns out that “terrestrial” likely means a Russian military satellite that no one knew or realised was out there.

The Russian News Agency TASS spoke with Alexander Ipatov, from the Russian Academy of Sciences. “We, indeed, discovered an unusual signal,” he told TASS. “However, an additional check showed that it was emanating from a Soviet military satellite, which had not been entered into any of the catalogues of celestial bodies.”

So much for winning the lottery. (VOA)

 

  • Peter Z

    It may be legit, but probably the russian military industrial complex threatened them so they’d pretend it’s from earth. It’s always the same the elites don’t want us to know about any kind of possible life forms out there. I don’t believe this press release

  • Peter Z

    Maybe I’m wrong but probably the signla is legit but the some people are lying about it. I don’t know. I hope it’s real.

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  • Peter Z

    It may be legit, but probably the russian military industrial complex threatened them so they’d pretend it’s from earth. It’s always the same the elites don’t want us to know about any kind of possible life forms out there. I don’t believe this press release

  • Peter Z

    Maybe I’m wrong but probably the signla is legit but the some people are lying about it. I don’t know. I hope it’s real.

Next Story

Insurance Claims From California’s Wildfire At $9 Billion

State and federal officials are currently removing hazardous household materials from the damaged properties.

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California, Insurance
California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones talks about the costs of recent wildfires during a news conference in Sacramento, California. VOA

Insurance claims from last month’s California wildfires already are at $9 billion and expected to increase, the state’s insurance commissioner announced Wednesday.

About $7 billion in claims are from the Camp Fire that destroyed the Northern California city of Paradise and killed at least 86 people, making it the deadliest U.S. wildfire in at least a century. The rest is from the Woolsey and Hill fires in Southern California.

Collectively, the fires destroyed or damaged more than 20,000 structures, with the vast majority in and around Paradise. On Tuesday, state and federal authorities estimated it will cost at least $3 billion just to clear debris.

“As the claims get perfected, as individuals get access to their former homes and neighborhoods, as they dialogue with their insurance companies and share more information about the scope of their loss, we expect these numbers to rise,” Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones said of the $9 billion estimate.

California, Wildfire, Insurance
Jennifer Christensen sorts through items found in a safe at the remains of her home Dec. 5, 2018, in Paradise, California. VOA

Over 28,000 claims

There are more than 28,000 claims for residential personal property, nearly 2,000 from commercial property and 9,400 in auto and other claims for the fires.

That’s well above the number of claims filed following a series of fires that tore through Northern California’s wine country last year. Losses from those fires were initially pegged at $3.3 billion but eventually grew to $10 billion.

While the Camp Fire destroyed about double the number of structures as the 2017 fires, home values in Butte County are far lower than those in Sonoma County. That’s part of the reason total claims may seem low compared to the 2017 figures, Jones said. Median home values in Sonoma County are more than double those in Butte.

Jones advised home owners to be cautious of “fraudsters and scam artists” trying to take advantage of vulnerable communities.

California, Fire prevention, wildfires, Insurance, rain
A controlled burn ignites pine trees on the “Rough Fire” — which closed camps east of Fresno at Hume Lake as it crossed Highway 180 — in the Sequoia National Forest in California, Aug. 21, 2015. VOA

He also said its time for California to start rethinking how and if it builds in fire-prone areas. Ken Pimlott, outgoing director of the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, told The Associated Press this week the state should consider banning construction in vulnerable areas.

Jones said local governments may not be fully considering the long-term impacts of building in areas at high risk of fire, floods and rising sea levels.

“That’s going to be a hard conversation. Everybody likes to build new, people obviously want to rebuild their communities,” he said. “We’re in a new era where these risks are so bad I think we’ve really got to take a look at how we’re making these decisions.”

Cause of fire remains unknown

Authorities are still determining what caused the fire.

Pacific Gas & Electric told regulators that a high-voltage power line malfunctioned at the time and spot that investigators believe the fire started on Nov. 8.

California, Fire prevention, wildfires, Insurance
Joe Balog, a workforce management director at Travelers, examines weather, social media and other data from recent natural disasters inside the company’s catastrophe response command center in Windsor, Connecticut. VOA

The San Francisco-based utility told the California Public Utilities Commission on Tuesday that several miles away workers found a fallen power pole and equipment with bullet holes.

86 deaths linked to fire

A number of fire victims have filed lawsuits alleging that PG&E’s equipment started the fire that destroyed the town of Paradise and killed at least 86 people.

The cleanup costs for last month’s fires will far surpass the record expense of $1.3 billion the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers spent on debris removal in Northern California in 2017.

California Office of Emergency Services Director Mark Ghilarducci said the state will manage cleanup contracts this time. Last year, hundreds of Northern California homeowners complained that contractors paid by the ton hauled away too much dirt and damaged unbroken driveways, sidewalks and pipes.

The state OES spent millions repairing that damage.

California, School
Trees reflect in a swimming pool outside Erica Hail’s Paradise, Calif., home, which burned during the Camp Fire. VOA

Lesson learned

Ghilarducci said the state OES will hire auditors and monitors to watch over debris removal in hopes of cutting down on the number of over-eager contractors.

“We learned a great number of things,” last year, Ghilarducci said.

Also Read: Insurance Company’s Response To Wildfire Claims Better Due to Technology

He said the U.S. Corps of Engineers was asked to lead the effort last year because state resources were stretched thin after responding to more than a dozen wildfires. This year, he said state officials can manage the cleanup and costs will be shared among state, federal and local authorities.

Cleanup is expected to begin in January and take about a year to complete. State and federal officials are currently removing hazardous household materials from the damaged properties. (VOA)