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This is going to be interesting... regardless.


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Hello all,


Well it seems the "Tabby Star" (ie. the star that dims 22% periodically) continues to get weirder as scientists study it.

Really at this point, it seems so different than the rest of the stars we have checked that it really does not matter whether

they discover a new natural phenomena causing this... or if it turned out to be a Dyson Sphere of some type.... we are going to learn some very interesting things regardless.


I find these mysteries captivating as we do tend to learn a lot.. many times by accident when we discover something we have never seen before and start studying it.




The more scientists learn about "Tabby's Star," the more mysterious the bizarre object gets.

Newly analyzed observations by NASA's planet-hunting Kepler space telescope show that the star KIC 8462852 — whose occasional, dramatic dips in brightness still have astronomers scratching their heads — has also dimmed overall during the last few years.

"The steady brightness change in KIC 8462852 is pretty astounding," study lead author Ben Montet, of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, said in a statement. [13 Ways to Hunt Intelligent Alien Life]

"Our highly accurate measurements over four years demonstrate that the star really is getting fainter with time," Montet added. "It is unprecedented for this type of star to slowly fade for years, and we don't see anything else like it in the Kepler data."


Full article: http://www.space.com/34303-alien-megastructure-star-strange-dimming-mystery.html


In my mind.. yes a gradual dimming over time is what you would expect with a structure being built. However, I think if we discover some type of natural phenomena doing this it is likely going to be just as exciting.

In fact.. it could be something we need to understand, it could be a terrifying natural phenomena. Knowledge is power.... understanding hazards is key to survival.


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It's always good to have a healthy dose of skepticism. It is more than likely a natural phenomenon, but you never know. It could be some super structure being developed by an alien civilization. I personally think it's more likely some natural occurrence, either something occluding the star or the star itself changing over time.


Here's another interesting discovery though (that still is most likely explained away as natural phenomenon or errors in the data). They have found 234 stars similar to our Sun (loosely) that are observed to emit a pulsing pattern--the same kind of pattern predicted to be used by any sufficiently advanced society to communicate with distant stars via powerful lasers.




Again, it is probably nothing in actuality, but it's still an interesting discovery.

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oh yes... healthy skepticism is a must. Without it we would not learn. One must continually ask logical questions when investigating such things.

I also, think these things are likely natural.


My point is, this star is so different than any others we have encountered... it really does not matter... it is going to be fascinating! :allgood:

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One thing that does give me pause.... even if this is a natural phenomena causing a gradual "abnormal dimming over time" plus a period 20+% dim it is likely something we need to understand.....

Anything that can dim a star that much is either enormous, or capable of consuming enormous amounts of energy. It is likely dangerous if not given the proper safety precautions.


In any case, as I have said earlier, it really does not matter what we discover it is at this point... it is something we have never seen before and therefore worthy of close attention in my mind.

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yes the Gamma burst is one of those things... that well... since it is impossible to shield from such a burst it is going to cook anything in it's path. We do have a potential threat from a relatively close neighbor... I think within 10 light years away if I remember correctly. I believe it is a pair of neutron stars orbiting each other... but it does not really matter in my mind, since one of these events simply eliminates anything in it's path... nothing really to worry about.


For me I tend to focus on things that I can learn things from. These mass kill events that cannot be protected from in any way that we know of... I tend to just forget about... since right now, it is beyond our capability to protect anything from a significant gamma ray burst. Even the easiest mass kill thing to protect from... an asteroid or comet strike... is beyond our capability... although hopefully not for much longer.


But I am one who thinks as we continue to learn, many things we think now are impossible... are only impossible until we understand them at a basic level and learn what to manipulate.

This has been pretty much true with everything we have accomplished so far... since many things that historically were thought impossible... are things that happen regularly now. (ie. It was not very long ago people thought it impossible to fly. Then when we learned how to fly, we thought it impossible to exceed the speed of sound)


So all is not lost... we just need to last long enough to learn the right things.

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This is a really good thing to see happening. Regardless of how unlikely the possibility is, if it is possible, it must be investigated in order to have a complete scientific investigation.

This is far more likely to be some sort of bizarre natural phenomena that will teach us something new... perhaps we will learn some new physics. A large radio telescope like this that can be focused directly on the star will tell us a lot regardless of whether it is natural... or something being constructed. It is useful data either way. It is good to see leading Scientists and CEO's backing proper scientific effort like this that has the potential of involving a subject the scientific

community has been unwilling to discuss publicly in any manner until about 5 years ago. Before that, if it even had the potential of them having to discuss something artificial out there in space they simply avoided it like the plague.


There is likely a 99.9999999999% chance it is a natural phenomena, but to be scientific we must also look at the 0.0000000001% chance also. We must encompass the entire field potential in order to have a complete investigation.

Because assumptions are the mother of all screw ups and misconceptions. :thumbsup:

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