Meteor in the sky

In 2017, the passage of a foreign object in our solar system baffled astronomers, and some considered it a sign of the existence of extraterrestrial life, a hypothesis that raised controversy, but the well-known scientist Avi Loeb defended it in a book published Thursday worldwide.

“If I am right, this is the greatest discovery in human history,” wrote the American-Israeli researcher Avi Loeb, director of the astronomy department at Harvard University, on the red tape on which the French publishing house “Lucoy” coated his book.

In his book confirming the observation of “the first sign of intelligent life outside the planet,” the black hole specialist looks at the discovery of “Oumuamua,” a cigar-shaped object across our solar system at full speed in October 2017.

Oumuamua is 400 meters long and 40 meters wide. It was observed by the Pan-Stars 1 telescope in Hawaii, and its speed was very high, which means that its source is a distant star, and it was the first object to be discovered, coming from another star system.

He described this for an object first as an asteroid, then a team from the European Space Agency suggested that it was a comet ejected from another star system.

But the hypothesis did not convince Avi Loeb, as he considered that it did not carry an explanation for the excessive acceleration of this object, nor because it did not release any trace (gas or dust) during its passage near the sun, nor for its unusual shape.

Loeb and another Harvard researcher wrote an article in the Astrophysical Journal Letters in which he considered that “Oumuamua” could only be a probe launched by an alien civilization.

Loeb’s hypothesis attracted severe criticism, commenting that “the debate continues for lack of concrete evidence” and “whatever conclusion is drawn about Oumuamua, it is clear that it was and remains an anomaly in itself.”

In his 272-page book, the physicist presented his hypotheses about “the first interstellar visitor ever observed,” and explored the question of whether human beings are “alone in the universe,” as Lucoy explained.

In his book “The Contempt With which I Met”, Loeb laments questions relating to the SITI Institute in California, which is devoted to researching the possibility of extraterrestrial intelligence.

He called for expanding the field of research, beyond the study of microbial life on Mars, which is the goal of the “Perseverance” mission of the US Space Agency “NASA”, which is scheduled to land on the red planet on February 18 next.



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