Wednesday, April 22, 2015

The Search for Super-civilizations in the Cosmos

The WISE Telescope

In 1964, Russian scientist Nikolai Kardashev suggested that in the long history of the universe, which began billions of years before the origin of our Sun and Earth, really advanced civilizations might have developed.  Such civilizations might learn to control the total power of their stars -- and, ultimately, the total power of their galaxies. 

Now, Jason Wright and Roger Griffith, a pair of scientists at Penn State University, have actually searched for this last kind of super-civilization.  If such advanced beings have actually colonized and exploited the billions of stars within a galaxy, these civilizations could produce tremendous amounts of waste heat.  

Just like your car and your computer produce waste heat while they are operating, so the thought is that large-scale civilizations will generate an unnatural amount of heat, beyond the heat that all objects give off.

A recent satellite called the Widefield Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) has been collecting information on sources of heat energy around the sky.  Wright and Griffith have looked at the output of 100,000 galaxies, to see if anyone of them might betray signs that the heat they produce is not natural, but comes from a super-civilization.

Although they did not find any obvious and definitive evidence, they did note some galaxies whose infrared energy was unusual in some ways.  These are worth investigating further. 

Of course no one really knows whether intelligent creatures can ever evolve to a level of technology where they take over an entire galaxy.  So finding one by this method is a long shot. (But I asked Geoff Marcy, the world's leading planet hunter, and he pointed out that just about all our searches for intelligence in the universe so far have been "long shots" -- no one can be sure today what method will pay off.  So Marcy feels we should explore as many different methods as possible.)

I also asked Jill Tarter, the U.S. leader of the search for extra-terrestrial intelligence using radio waves, and she also was excited about our adding more techniques to our SETI arsenal.  She told me she was adding the unusual galaxies from the WISE survey to the list of places where they would point radio telescopes, just in case there were any intelligent radio signals to be found.

Indeed, the SETI institute organized a Google hangout about this survey, and included Jill Tarter and Freeman Dyson, who first suggested ways that an advanced civilization might betray itself with infrared waves.  You can hang out and see what they said at:  


  1. Want to know how to get over a broken heart? A break up can feel like the end of the world, but if you really do want to move on, here’s a complete guide on how to deal with a broken heart.My name is Mimi Bieber, i live in Tx,USA. since 6 months I have witness what is called heart broke. my boyfriend that promised me marriage failed me and impregnate me and leave,he dump me,he stop calling" he stop picking my calls,and he no longer respond to me. I have be looking for solution,I fall into the hands of fake spell caster,they rough me off and took my money without help.I have cried,I have weep"and tears runs out of eyes. The silentness in my heart brought me to the deepest path of failure that I lost my job. Crying all day,because of my life was lonely. So thanks to Dr Brave that came into my life and brought me the greatest joy that was lost. I saw his mail while browsing and I contact and tell him what I am passing through with no doubt because what saw about him,was enough to believe. And I was given words of solution on what to do. I can't really help thinking about it I have tried to see what I can do, I manage to provide him some materials and he help me with the rest,after casting the spell, 12hrs later he came with rose on his hand and I was even about going out,i saw him in front of my door when he sees me he knee and said he is dying I should forgive him and accept him back he was crying,I can't wait to let him finish I quickly crab him and kiss him, just then" he said he is restless without me, just as the prophet has said he will be. He brought out a ring and put it on my hand. Our wedding day was scheduled,1week after we got married. today makes it 2weeks and we are living happily I don't know how to praise him enough, he has done me a thing I can never forget. And I can't really share to myself alone, I want y'all to help me praise him because if it is wasn't for him I already plan of committing suicide. But right now I am now so happy more than I was before. And you out there crying for help you've already got one,Dr Brave is the man that you need in all rampart. contact his address if you need his service, also contact him on his web site: you Dr Brave, i will always be testifying about your good work.