Published: Fri, November 09, 2018
Sci-tech | By Carrie Guzman

Cigar-shaped object could be alien spacecraft, Harvard researchers claim

Cigar-shaped object could be alien spacecraft, Harvard researchers claim

Other studies have suggested that other "Oumuamua-like objects" will potentially enter our solar system, with some potentially carrying life.

However, according to a recent article from two Havard researchers, Oumuamua could be something completely different, namely a "fully operational probe sent voluntarily near the Earth by an extraterrestrial civilization".

They proposed that it was powered along by "solar radiation pressure" produced by the sun, but went on to make more "exotic" suggestions to explain its acceleration.

The authors argue that if Oumuamua were just a random interstellar rock, we should have seen more objects like it.

The Oumuamua was first discovered by a telescope in Hawaii.

The object was said to be 10 times longer than it is wide and it traveled at speeds of almost 200,000 miles per hour.

The paper was written by Abraham Loeb, professor and chair of astronomy, and Shmuel Bialy, a postdoctoral scholar, at the Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics.

At least, that's what astronomers from Harvard University suggest in a research paper.

"Light sails with similar dimensions was designed and built by our own civilization, including the IKAROS project and" Starshot Initiative ".

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"Its origin could be either natural (in the interstellar medium or proto-planetary disks) or artificial (as a probe sent for a reconnaissance mission into the inner region of the solar system)". "Technology the light sails can be used to transport cargo between planets or between the stars", the researchers note.

"It's certainly ingenious to show that an object the size of Oumuamua might be sent by aliens", says SETI Institute astronomer Seth Shostak.

"In science", he said in an email, "we must ask ourselves, "Where is the evidence?, not "Where is the lack of evidence so that I can fit in any hypothesis that I like?"

"And here's a story fromNBC News saying an alien spacecraft may be above Earth and no one's noticing it", Stu laughed.

In December 2017 it was announced the astronomers were going to scan Oumuamua for signs of alien life.

"The thing you have to understand is: scientists are perfectly happy to publish an outlandish idea if it has even the tiniest *sliver* of a chance of not being wrong", Katherine Mack, an astrophysicist, wrote on Twitter.

Loeb said he is not definitively claiming the object is alien, but said it is important to acknowledge the possibility.

'But until every other possibility has been exhausted dozen times over, even the authors probably don't believe it'.

Oumuamua has left the solar system and is no longer visible, the news outlet noted. "It is impossible to guess the goal of Oumuamua without more data".

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