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Breakthrough Listen to Observe Interstellar Asteroid 'Oumuamua for Radio Emissions

Accepted submission by takyon at 2017-12-12 17:25:38

'Oumuamua []'s interstellar origin and unusually elongated shape has been enough to convince the billionaire-backed Breakthrough Listen [] to observe it to look for signs of alien technology []:

The team's efforts will begin on Wednesday, with astronomers observing the asteroid, which is currently speeding away from our Solar System, across four different radio frequency bands. The first set of observations is due to last for 10 hours.

[...] Mr Milner's Breakthrough Listen programme released a statement which read: "Researchers working on long-distance space transportation have previously suggested that a cigar or needle shape is the most likely architecture for an interstellar spacecraft, since this would minimise friction and damage from interstellar gas and dust."

Andrew Siemion, director of the Berkeley SETI Research Center, who is part of the initiative, said: "'Oumuamua's presence within our Solar System affords Breakthrough Listen an opportunity to reach unprecedented sensitivities to possible artificial transmitters and demonstrate our ability to track nearby, fast-moving objects." He added: "Whether this object turns out to be artificial or natural, it's a great target for Listen."

Previously: Possible Interstellar Asteroid/Comet Enters Solar System []
Interstellar Asteroid Named: Oumuamua []
ESO Observations Show First Interstellar Asteroid is Like Nothing Seen Before []

Original Submission