Astronomers have detected strange radio signals coming from a nearby Earth-sized planet named ‘Ross 128b.’
The planet lies only 11 light-years away, and could be home to alien life due to its moderate temperatures.
Skymania.com reports: Its discovery will excite alien-hunters wondering whether unexpected radio emissions picked up by a giant telescope in Puerto Rico in May could be a message from E.T.
The Planetary Habitability Laboratory detected the broadcast using the Arecibo radio dish in Puerto Rico to study a red dwarf star, Ross 128, as part of a search for Earth-like planets.
Professor Abel Méndez reported afterwards that the team had recorded “some very peculiar signals” from Ross 128. Local radio interference was ruled out as a cause because it did not occur when the telescope listened to other stars.
Other major observatories, the Green Bank Telescope in West Virginia and the Allen Telescope Array in California, were brought in to investigate by the SETI organisation – it stands for the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence.
Now a European telescope in Chile has spotted a temperate, Earth-sized planet which orbits its red dwarf star, Ross 128, once every 9.9 days. It is much closer to its sun than Earth is to our own Sun, but because the star is much cooler, temperatures are similar. Ross 128 b’s equilibrium temperature is estimated to lie between -60° and 20°C.