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Radio signal probably not from extraterrestrials

Reports stir excitement, but there’s no sign of alien activity

By
5:00pm, August 30, 2016
RATAN-600

LONG DISTANCE CALL  A signal detected by the Russian RATAN-600 radio telescope (pictured) has triggered speculation about a message from extraterrestrials. 

A radio signal detected last year has sparked speculation that an advanced alien civilization is broadcasting from a relatively nearby planet. But recent scans have turned up nothing, suggesting the blip was a false alarm and nothing more than earthly interference.

In May 2015, astronomers detected a blast of radio waves coming from the direction of HD 164595, a sunlike star about 94 light-years away in the constellation Hercules. The signal, reported online August 27 on the blog Centauri Dreams, lasted just a few seconds and reached a peak power of about 750 millijansky — fairly strong by radio astronomy standards (1 jansky equals 10-26 watts per square meter per hertz). The researchers aren’t claiming that they found E.T., but they are asking other astronomers to monitor the star — home to

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