The Parkes telescope captured an “intriguing signal” from the Proxima Centauri system, which has a planet on which there could be life, according to scientific theories.
The detection of the signal occurred in April and May 2019, when a narrow beam of 980 MHz radio waves was captured , according to the English newspaper The Guardian . The finding was part of the Breakthrough Listen project , which is dedicated to searching and classifying possible signs of intelligent life outside planet Earth to find out if “someone” is trying to contact the human race.
The signal comes from Proxima Centauri, a system located only 4.2 light years from Earth that has some characteristics that make it interesting for scientists. As reported by the British newspaper, apparently the signal changed slightly while it was observed by specialists, so that it seemed an alteration caused by the movement of a planet.
“He is the first serious candidate for an extraterrestrial communication since the signal ‘Wow!'” , Assured an anonymous source quoted by The Guardian who would have had access to the data of the signal. The Wow! It was a famous radio signal detected in 1977 that caused interest to scientists.
“The chances that this is not an artificial signal from Proxima Centauri seem staggering. The chances that the only two civilizations in the entire galaxy are neighbors, among 400 billion stars, absolutely push the boundaries of rationality, ” he noted for his part Lewis Dartnell, astrobiologist and professor of science communication at the University of Westminster.
However, specialists also say that there is a good chance that the origin is from our world. For example, through the interference of a satellite or other device doing, as happened on other occasions.
The Proxima Centauri system is recognized for being very close, in astronomical terms, to Earth. So far it has two known planets and one of them could meet the conditions to host life.
According to research, Proxima Centauri is home to a gaseous planet and another that would be rocky and has 17% more mass than Earth. It is there that scientists believe that possibilities of life may exist.
Although this planet is at a distance from the central star of the system that is 5% of that which exists between the Earth and the Sun, Proxima Centauri is much colder and smaller than the Astro Rey of the solar system and that is why it could reach to be habitable.
However, it is still necessary to clarify what the composition of the planet is like and whether the periodic flares of the surrounding star do not affect those chances.