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Go Back   IceInSpace > General Astronomy > Celestial and Astronomical Events

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Old 19-01-2016, 01:41 PM
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Fluctuations in light from star KIC 8462852

There is an interesting article in todays newspaper about random fluctuations in the light coming from star KIC 8462852 which does not have an explanation.

http://www.news.com.au/technology/sc...710da6cc4a9d4a

This was discovered by the amateur Planet Hunters project and has been followed up SETI.

One explanation that was initially proposed was that the fluctuations were caused by a swarm of comets heading towards the star, however this now seems to have been discounted by a professor at Louisiana State University.

It has also been proposed that these fluctuations could be caused by a speculative idea called a Dyson Sphere - a structure built around a star by an advanced civilisation to harness the power from the star.

It would interesting to hear if anyone on the forum has idea's about what might be causing this.

Cheers,
Mark
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Old 19-01-2016, 02:18 PM
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yep interesting alright

http://arxiv.org/abs/1601.03256
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Old 19-01-2016, 04:30 PM
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"Within the context of the comet-family idea, the century-long dimming trend requires an estimated 648,000 giant comets (each with 200 km diameter) all orchestrated to pass in front of the star within the last century."

As long as none of these hit the earth and killed us all (which one almost certainly would), then it would be a fantastic sight.

Most likely this is caused by something else entirely.
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Old 28-01-2016, 10:34 AM
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Maybe an advanced civilisation has worked out how to control their star's output and are using it to send a signal. Heaps more power than you could ever generate, and right on your "doorstep". Like a big-arse lighthouse; easily seen from all over the galaxy.
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Old 31-01-2016, 08:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by middy View Post
Maybe an advanced civilisation has worked out how to control their star's output and are using it to send a signal. Heaps more power than you could ever generate, and right on your "doorstep". Like a big-arse lighthouse; easily seen from all over the galaxy.
Any civilisation capable of doing that should easily be able to detect us too.
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Old 08-08-2016, 10:26 AM
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This is in the news again this morning...

http://www.news.com.au/technology/sc...dc4a1ad020e403

Certainly an interesting mystery.
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Old 09-08-2016, 05:12 PM
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Yeah it's unfortunate that Kepler went bad and the 7xx day apparent period meant only 2 passes of "the object(s)" were captured properly. Especially because some irregular (disintegrating?) occulter(s) not in orbit around tabbys star would seem to be a good fit, that would then be expected to affect nearby stars in similar ways eventually. It seems like that's what the new papers authors investigated, but without the same precision as available in the original run... there's a lot of uncertainty in drawing conclusions one way or the other. It may wind up another "Wow!" signal...

I think it should be noted that the comet swarm hypothesis is somewhat misrepresented as being strongly promoted by Boyajian et al in this paper and a lot of the popsci articles including news.com.au's when it was much more of "the only one not conclusively ruled out straight away apart from Omg It's Aliens!". They had to propose some kind of explanation...
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Old 05-09-2016, 07:18 PM
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Looks like scientists at the Max Plank Institute have found another star (EPIC 204278916) which is showing large fluctuations of light... Very interesting.

http://www.news.com.au/technology/sc...d3bfbabc23850f

Cheers,
Mark
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Old 22-05-2017, 09:19 PM
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Looks like the star's brightness has been observed to be dipping again over the past few days.

http://www.news.com.au/technology/sc...caed20cb268acb

Any suggestions for what may be causing it?

Cheers,
Mark
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Old 22-05-2017, 10:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by middy View Post
Maybe an advanced civilisation has worked out how to control their star's output and are using it to send a signal. Heaps more power than you could ever generate, and right on your "doorstep". Like a big-arse lighthouse; easily seen from all over the galaxy.
Answer me this
If a civilization could capture the energy of a star, then piloting a craft across the galaxy would be child's play
It seems mind boggling that they would use such energy to send a message across astronomical distances in the hope of contacting some hypothesized
civilization that they wouldn't know even exists.
I find it pretty poor science for these "scientist" to put forward in my opinion outlandish claims/ideas with this Dyson Sphere.
Because something doesn't fit the the current theory of star formation etc, doesn't give them the right to put out such nonsense.
An example of not knowing "everything" about star formation is the Supernova 1987A, up until this supernova exploded it was always thought that type 2 Supernovae came from Red Giant stars.
Sanduleak -69 202 was a Blue Super giant star.
It changed the way astrophysicists thought about the revolution of star formation and of course their deaths.
Science still has a long way to go before it can explain everything to do with peculiarities of star formation.
End of rant
Cheers
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  #11  
Old 23-05-2017, 09:05 AM
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New kind of variable star.
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