No alien megastructure present around KIC 8462852: Research

No alien megastructure present around KIC 8462852, confirm researchers

No evidence has been found of an advanced civilization orbiting the anomalous star KIC 8462852 and beaming intentional laser signals towards earth. The star has confused researchers for quite a long time because it used to show irregular dimming that has not been seen in another star.

This erratic dimming led to speculations that KIC 8462852 is being orbiting by a giant structure built by an extraterrestrial civilization. In order to know the truth, scientists have looked for laser pulses from the star, but did not find anything.

Study author Douglas Vakoch, President of SETI International affirmed that between October 29 and November 28, 2015, they have carried out their experiment. They chose six nights between the above mentioned period and look for laser pulses as short as billionth of a second at the Boquete Optical SETI Observatory in Panama.

For the task, the scientists have used Newtonian telescope, which boasts a unique detection method having a high level of sensitivity to pulsed signals. The researchers have affirmed that if there was by chance any intentional laser pulse was beamed in the visible spectrum then it would have been detected the observatory would have detected the same.

NASA's Kepler telescope was also used to detect the anomalous light curve. The researchers said that the dimming observed for KIC 8462852 was noticeable one like up to 22%. Another surprising thing about the dimming was that it did not follow the regular pattern of a plant orbiting a star. As per the astronomers, dimming might have been due to cometary fragments in a highly elliptical orbit around KIC 8462852 and intercepting starlight at the time when the Kepler mission was keeping a watch on it.

“Given the large distance to KIC 8462852, nearly 1500 light-years, any signal received on Earth today would have left the star shortly after the fall of the Roman Empire. We need a sensitive way to detect any laser pulses that have traveled that far”, affirmed Marlin Schuetz, Director of the Boquete Optical SETI Observatory.

To address this challenge, the Boquete observatory used a novel approach to find out brief laser pulses. To reduce signal losses owing to splitting the beam, the Boquete observatory has used a single photometer receiving full stream of pulses. The outcome of the single photometer was assessed for pulses repeating in regular, periodic manner.