It can not be excluded that Oumuamu, the first interstellar asteroid found in the solar system, is a probe sent by extraterrestrial "intelligent beings". This is said in an interview for Spiegel Professor Avi Loeb, director of Harvard University's Astronomy Department, who says "thinking of distant civilization is not speculative."
"The more we discover, the stranger becomes"
Loeb, the author of more than 700 articles on astrophysical phenomena, explains that the Oumuamu – which was discovered in October 2017 and whose name means "the first messenger" in Hawaii – has many characteristics that are difficult to explain. "The more we discover" about this object, "alien" is happeninghe says.
So its brightness is "dramatically changing", suggesting it has a "very rare form", probably a disc or a cigar. On the other hand, the Oumuamu orbit "differs significantly" from the orbit of the Sun, which points to the existence of "additional force" on this cosmic object.
"As long as there is no natural explanation" for the asteroid-related secrets, "we have the possibility that it is an artificial product," "a light candle made by intelligent beings," Loeb said.
In the same direction, he points out that "if Oumuamu is a random wandering object, every solar system should produce millions of billions of such objects," so he does not exclude the possibility of a "mission" controlled, even from a space probe sent to a reconnaissance mission.
"Thinking about distant civilizations is not speculative"
The astronomer stresses that "we live in a special time" when it comes to finding the answer to "the most basic of all questions": if we are in the universe ourselves. On the one hand, in recent years, we have discovered "how a widespread life can be in our galaxy," explains the scientist and recalls that the Kepler satellite taught us "that every fourth star has a planet Earth-like, with favorable temperatures for the emergence of life. , "we now have the technology needed" to explore the possible existence of an extraterrestrial intelligent life.
Professor, "thinking about distant civilizations is not speculative." "We know we exist, so at least one way of life has developed advanced technology, and we know there are similar conditions to Earth in the quarter of all planetary systems around other stars," says the scientist,Why should they not be intelligent creatures elsewhere?"
- The nature of Oumuam is surrounded by a mysterious aura since it was discovered by astronomers at the University of Hawaii in October 2017.
- Recently, SETI researchers have reported that long-term observations on the surface of this rock object have not detected artificial radio signals but still do not preclude it from being alien.