Scientists calculated how many active civilizations can be in our Galaxy and came to the conclusion that there are 36 of them, and that they are able to communicate with us using radio waves. But do not rush to rejoice, scientists gave explanations that disappointed everyone.
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According to experts from the University of Nottingham, there is an assumption that intelligent life develops on other planets in the same way as it developed on Earth. The alien populations considered in this study were named by British researchers of the project Networks Communicating Extra-Terrestrial Intelligent (CETI) as civilizations characterized by the ability to transmit radio waves. The cited study was published in The Astrophysical Journal.
Scientists, drawing a parallel between the evolution of life on Earth and similar biological development in other worlds of the Milky Way, came to the theory that in our galaxy we need to look for at least 36 extraterrestrial civilizations similar to ours, specializing in sending radio signals to space.
These 36 extraterrestrial civilizations represent, in the opinion of experts who participated in the study at the University of Nottingham, the so-called Astrobiological Copernican limit.
More information on the calculations made by the researchers was provided by Christopher Conselice, an astrophysicist at British University. He said:
“Our new research suggests that searches for extraterrestrial intelligent civilizations not only reveal the existence of how life forms, but also give us clues for how long our civilization will last.
If we find that intelligent life is common, then this would reveal that our civilization could exist for much longer than a few hundred years.
Alternatively, if we find that there are no active civilizations in our galaxy, it is a bad sign for our own long-term existence.”
In particular, the definition of the aforementioned limit follows from the assumption that planets like the Earth are in the orbit of a star in the habitable zone and have the correct distribution of elements, intelligent life that communicates by radio develops in 4,500–5,500 million years after the formation of the planet.
According to the results of the study, 36 civilizations should be evenly distributed throughout the Milky Way. However, the academics themselves immediately drowned out a slight enthusiasm for the upcoming “close contacts of the third kind”.
In the light of published estimates, the closest alien civilization to us will be at a distance of 17,000 light-years from Earth, which will make any radio link between a hypothetical heavenly body and our planet impossible.
Moreover, the same probable extraterrestrial populations can inhabit the planets located next to the red dwarfs, that is, stars completely different from our Sun, because they are much less powerful and extremely unstable.
Consequently, scientists conclude that there is a high probability that we are actually the only active civilization in the Milky Way.