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Ash4781

NASA announcement - new solar system discovery

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To be honest I think any highly intelligent beings out there already know we are here. I think we are like one of those 'undiscovered' tribes in the amazon who quite happily existed undisturbed until the 20th century or the Incas in Peru until the Spanish arrived. We may also be unwittingly being 'farmed' or an experiment, after all if others can travel 40 light years in double quick time a human lifetime may be like a three or four months to them.

Ignorance as far as I'm concerned may actually be bliss.

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Not sure about the potential for life, but it's a great test system to refine techniques on. The fast orbits mean that you can signal average the spectra many times to improve results, and when/if James Webb gets into space its going to be even easier.

If we can characterise the atmospheres of these planets, and currently there is no reason why not, then it's pretty sobering. Some people have stated that we shouldn't send out things like the Voyager and Pioneer messages, but the bottom line is that anyone who has the technology to watch and has the right alignment has probably seen us a long time ago. If they are out there, they almost certainly know we're here. 

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18 minutes ago, ChewingGrass said:

To be honest I think any highly intelligent beings out there already know we are here. I think we are like one of those 'undiscovered' tribes in the amazon who quite happily existed undisturbed until the 20th century or the Incas in Peru until the Spanish arrived. We may also be unwittingly being 'farmed' or an experiment, after all if others can travel 40 light years in double quick time a human lifetime may be like a three or four months to them.

Ignorance as far as I'm concerned may actually be bliss.

If you can travel those distances we would be of little interest apart from hilarity.

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1 hour ago, interestrateripoff said:

If you can travel those distances we would be of little interest apart from hilarity.

If you are advanced enough to travel those distances then your advanced enough to not go through the bother. 

That's the direction our own science is now going. Decode and understand the makeup of the universe itself which can be done here and now. The sheer size of the universe alone makes any sort of effort to enable the possibility of exploring the universe fruitless. 

 

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1 hour ago, interestrateripoff said:

If you can travel those distances we would be of little interest apart from hilarity.

On the other hand - the European medieval kingdoms had no economic, political or security reasons to send their armies on a long, long trip to the Middle East and slaughter entire cities.

But they had religious reasons.

Who knows - an alien race might have "you are the only intelligent race" as a core tenet, and our existence would be an affront to their very existence.

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20 minutes ago, Ash4781 said:

Is there any commentary on how old the star is / could be? 

 

Good question. I see where you are going.

Edit:

The star is TRAPPIST-1. The age is given as simply being over 1 billion years. However, some of the news reports today state that it is just 500 million years old.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TRAPPIST-1

http://www.trappist.one/

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10 minutes ago, SNACR said:

Really?

Well, if we're thinking of visiting, we should definitely pack a car and some golf clubs.

 

I'll make a flask of tea and some sarnies. Maybe throw in a boiled egg as well. Hope the planets are not inhabitated by giant super intelligent boiled eggs though.

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7 hours ago, The Masked Tulip said:

I'll make a flask of tea and some sarnies. Maybe throw in a boiled egg as well. Hope the planets are not inhabitated by giant super intelligent boiled eggs though.

Will there be allotments there?

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14 hours ago, ChewingGrass said:

Ignorance as far as I'm concerned may actually be bliss.

Yes, this is the conclusion that Stephen Hawking has come to. 

There is undoubtedly alien life, but we should not be broadcasting our presence or otherwise letting them know we exist. They are unlikely to be friendly.

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If these planets are only about 500 million years old - NASA guess - then shouldn't they still be hot masses of burning rock that have not cooled? I think it took a couple of billion years for the first organisms to exist on earth - those rocks down in Oz creating oxygen or something like that.

Fascinating to think that in 4 or 5 billion years some life forms on one of those planets could be looking in our direction wondering if there is life on Earth - and we have long gone.

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16 minutes ago, The Masked Tulip said:

If these planets are only about 500 million years old - NASA guess - then shouldn't they still be hot masses of burning rock that have not cooled? I think it took a couple of billion years for the first organisms to exist on earth - those rocks down in Oz creating oxygen or something like that.

Fascinating to think that in 4 or 5 billion years some life forms on one of those planets could be looking in our direction wondering if there is life on Earth - and we have long gone.

Just how inhabitable red dwarf systems are is a little debatable too, they're often flare-prone. On the other hand they last an awful lot longer than larger stars (long enough that the universe isn't old enough for any to have fizzled out yet).

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22 minutes ago, Errol said:

Yes, this is the conclusion that Stephen Hawking has come to. 

There is undoubtedly alien life, but we should not be broadcasting our presence or otherwise letting them know we exist. They are unlikely to be friendly.

What's the plan then ? Build a giant curtain round the solar system to stop them spotting us ?

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4 minutes ago, Gigantic Purple Slug said:

What's the plan then ? Build a giant curtain round the solar system to stop them spotting us ?

Quite. Any alien life form capable of posing a threat to us would be quite capable of detecting us regardless.

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13 minutes ago, Gigantic Purple Slug said:

What's the plan then ? Build a giant curtain round the solar system to stop them spotting us ?

I think Hawking was specifically talking about those lunatics a few years back who sent a satellite off into space on a one way trip carrying full details of the human race, music, writing and other scientific details.

The point is we don't know who will pick up that satellite container. Or when. 

Very unwise to furnish a probably hostile and infinitely superior species with a full understanding of humanity and where we can be found.

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