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by James Dunn, guest contributor.  [April 27, 2007]




[]  I propose that the drive to survive is common to intelligent beings.  All stars eventually die out -- or at least they should.  If we maintain our technological course and manage to survive despite our self-destructive tendencies, then when our sun dims we will devise methods to re-energize it to maintain our lives and that of the plants and animals.

I do not think we are unique and alone in the Universe.  I believe intelligent beings have lived many millions of years before ourselves.  So that the light reaching us now, which began its journey millions of years ago, might be from stars that should have died out -- but did not!

The problem with listening for aliens talking to us (i.e., the SETI project), is that we, as an intelligent species, have only lived but an instant.  For us to be listening just as an alien message arrives is such a long shot that we probably won't get the message intended for us.  We have a much better chance finding conditions that an alien species might have maintained for billions of years.

I propose that astrophysicists should try to find abnormal stars.  Stars that should be dead, but are not.  Stars that are non-characteristic of the statistical norm.  For instance, a star that lies far from a natural birthing place for stars, where statistically there should have been more matter to create such a star.  A star that is brighter or has a different spectrum profile than anticipated.

If an alien civilization wished to survive and had the technology, they'd maintain the longevity of their sun to support the diversity of life on their planet(s).

My proposed sun-based search for alien life requires the combined talents of nuclear physicists and astrophysicists.  I'm assuming that naturally decaying stars have certain observable amplitudes for different frequencies of emitted light for each size and class of star.  Perhaps the rotation rate of the EM field polar plane for a particular photon is predictable, and deviating stars are noted during routine data collection?

If a star has the components of an old decaying star, and is producing the light of a younger star, then maybe we can deduce the kinds of circumstances that would produce such an anomaly.  Maybe there is some nuclear process that can only be produced artificially, and which has unique observable properties?

Much data has already been collected (such as by Very Large Array in Socorro, New Mexico).  It need only be processed.  We already have in our databases the EM spectrums of millions of stars.  Unfortunately, I imagine that cost factors prevent many photon qualities from being detected and cataloged.

A Chicago research team has been investigating a third form of nuclear power -- Total Annihilation -- for many years.  This team is trying to build a complex waveform to interfere with the nuclear bonds of atoms.  The energy to be released by Total Annihilation is expected to be many trillions of times greater than that of fission or fusion.  Its method differs, but its energy is akin to that of supercollider antimatter experiments.

An example given was (quoted, as best as I recall, around 2000): "Take a half ounce of any material -- water, nuclear waste, free-floating hydrogen from space.  Apply Total Annihilation to that material, and the energy released is enough to loft a large spacecraft from the Earth, put it in orbit, run all its systems and circle the sun, and then land gently back on Earth."

With such technology, could not one cause the fusion byproducts of the sun -- or any alien star -- to release enough energy to sustain its energy output?  And such a star's energy output would likely have some unusual qualities, as its energy would not entirely be due to fission or fusion.

Given that over 90% of the Universe is composed of dark matter, in the older part of the Universe, perhaps many ancient alien civilizations are self-contained and thus unobservable.  And given that we currently cannot detect self-contained planets, our only hope for extraterrestrial "contact" may be that some alien civilizations produce observable artificial phenomena.

I suspect that some alien civilizations have indeed chosen to artificially maintain their stars' output, so as to maintain a particular environmental relationship needed by a specific species, not necessarily their own.

Copyright 2007 by James Dunn

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