Scientists are going to carefully study the surroundings of a supernova that has recently flared up in the Pinwheel galaxy. They believe that aliens could use this explosion to attract our attention and give us a sign of their existence.
A supernova flare in a nearby galaxy
A group of scientists from the University of Washington, the SETI Institute, Yale University and Smith College published an article in which they reported that they were carefully examining the area of a supernova flare in the Pinwheel galaxy (M101) in the hope of finding a signal from an alien civilization.
The galaxy is located 21 million light-years away from us in the direction of the constellation Ursa Major. It is known for the fact that it is turned towards us by its plane. The supernova, designated SN 2023ixf, was discovered on May 19 of this year. It flared up in one of the spiral arms of this star system.
The supernova belongs to Type II, so it was formed as a result of the explosion of a single star that was at least 8 times more massive than the Sun. Scientists expect that the flare will be visible for at least several months, or even years. And they expect that during this time they will be able to find aliens in its vicinity.
Aliens want to attract attention to themselves
Scientists claim that an alien civilization could use a supernova explosion to attract attention. There are a lot of objects in space, and it is unclear where to look to notice the “brothers in mind”. Therefore, they can wait for a supernova explosion, which will definitely be seen even in other galaxies, and try to send some kind of signal about their existence.
That’s what astronomers are planning to look for. For this purpose, once a month, during the entire time when the supernova will be visible, they are going to peer into what they call the “SETI ellipsoid” — an area where alien civilizations can somehow manifest their existence.
In its shape, this area resembles an egg, there are more than 100 stars inside it. Scientists admit that the probability of sending some kind of signal by aliens is quite low. But they are not going to give up the search because of this.
According to phys.org
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