The Jeuns

Discovering Earth ‘technosignatures’ visible to aliens through Private Odysseus moon lander

June 13, 2024 | by The Jeuns

A groundbreaking discovery has been made as astronomers recently detected radio waves from Earth on the moon for the first time. This signals a new era in radio astronomy, showcasing the potential for studying Earth as an exoplanet.

The radio waves were captured by a small radio telescope onboard the Odysseus spacecraft, which successfully landed on the moon on February 22. The experiment, named ROLSES, recorded signals from Earth for 1.5 hours from the moon’s south pole.

Co-investigator of ROLSES, astrophysicist Jack Burns from the University of Colorado Boulder, described this moment as the “dawn of radio astronomy from the moon.” Studying Earth from the moon as an exoplanet opens up possibilities for detecting similar signals from planets around distant stars, hinting at the presence of intelligent life.

Despite some setbacks during the historic landing of Odysseus, which caused the spacecraft to tip over and hinder data transmission, the researchers managed to gather important data. Burns mentioned that the reduced time of data collection may affect the signal-to-noise ratio, making it unclear if the content of the radio waves can be decoded.

Looking towards the future, astronomers are anticipating the launch of another radio telescope to the moon’s far side in 2026. The Lunar Surface Electromagnetics Experiment-Night (LuSEE-Night) aims to detect radio waves from 13.4 billion years ago, a time known as the cosmic Dark Ages when the universe was shrouded in a fog of hydrogen.

This exciting development marks a significant step in understanding the universe’s history and potentially discovering extraterrestrial life. As technology continues to advance, the exploration of space and distant planets holds endless possibilities for the future of astronomy.


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