When we consider the vastness of the universe, it can be quite difficult to believe that we are the only intelligent beings out there. The Milky Way alone is home to more than 200 billion stars, almost all of which are orbited by planets that we have yet to discover.
Considering that there are at least 100 billion galaxies in the known universe, not to mention galaxies we haven\’t observed yet, we can assume that there are trillions and trillions of planets waiting to be explored.
With the technology available today, scientists and astronomers have only been able to find a small group of planets that they believe may harbor e̳x̳t̳r̳a̳t̳e̳r̳r̳e̳s̳t̳r̳i̳a̳l̳ life. However, it is foolish to assume that all e̳x̳t̳r̳a̳t̳e̳r̳r̳e̳s̳t̳r̳i̳a̳l̳ c̳i̳v̳i̳l̳i̳z̳a̳t̳i̳o̳n̳s̳ can be benevolent.
That\’s why many scientists are concerned about NASA\’s new projects to broadcast messages with our location and information about all inhabitants.
So what are the chances that these life forms are malevolent? Well, a new study offers us the answer to this question.
4 dangerous a̳l̳i̳e̳n̳ c̳i̳v̳i̳l̳i̳z̳a̳t̳i̳o̳n̳s̳
A new study tries to determine how dangerous it really is to try to contact e̳x̳t̳r̳a̳t̳e̳r̳r̳e̳s̳t̳r̳i̳a̳l̳ c̳i̳v̳i̳l̳i̳z̳a̳t̳i̳o̳n̳s̳.
According to this article, there are approximately four “evil a̳l̳i̳e̳n̳ c̳i̳v̳i̳l̳i̳z̳a̳t̳i̳o̳n̳s̳” in the Milky Way, and we could probably send 18,000 interstellar messages to different exoplanets in our galaxy and the probability of ensuring our own destruction is the same as a global catastrophic asteroid hitting Earth. .
The article is called “Estimating the Prevalence of Malicious Extraterrestrial Ci̳v̳i̳l̳i̳z̳a̳t̳i̳o̳n̳s” and was authored by Alberto Caballero, a doctoral student in conflict resolution at the University of Vigo, Spain.
He is also the author of another study published in the University of Cambridge\’s International Journal of Astrobiology earlier this month that looked at the origin of the famous WOW! signal.
Caballero says he had to make some assumptions that make it very difficult to know if his calculations are correct.
To do the study, he investigated how many external “invasions” have taken place on Earth in the last 50 years, that is, countries that invade other countries.
He then took that data and applied it to the number of known and estimated exoplanets, and potentially habitable exoplanets, based on Italian SETI scientist Claudio Maccone\’s estimate that there could be as many as 15,785 c̳i̳v̳i̳l̳i̳z̳a̳t̳i̳o̳n̳s̳ in the Milky Way.
Caballero concludes that the probability of a hostile a̳l̳i̳e̳n̳ race invading Earth is low, very low.
“The probability of an a̳l̳i̳e̳n̳ invasion by a c̳i̳v̳i̳l̳i̳z̳a̳t̳i̳o̳n̳ whose planet we send messages is therefore about two orders of magnitude lower than the probability of a planet-killing asteroid collision, which is already a one-on-one event. 100 million years,” writes Caballero.
He also explains that there is likely less than one evil a̳l̳i̳e̳n̳ c̳i̳v̳i̳l̳i̳z̳a̳t̳i̳o̳n̳ in the Milky Way that has also mastered interstellar travel, which would make them a so-called “Type 1” c̳i̳v̳i̳l̳i̳z̳a̳t̳i̳o̳n̳.
The doctoral student told the digital magazine Motherboard that as society became more advanced, there were fewer invasions, suggesting to him that a̳l̳i̳e̳n̳ c̳i̳v̳i̳l̳i̳z̳a̳t̳i̳o̳n̳s̳ capable of destroying Earth would be less interested in making it technologically advanced.
“I did the article based only on life as we know it,” said Caballero.
“We don\’t know the mind of a̳l̳i̳e̳n̳s. An a̳l̳i̳e̳n̳ c̳i̳v̳i̳l̳i̳z̳a̳t̳i̳o̳n̳ may have a brain with a different chemical makeup and may lack our empathy or have more psychopathological behaviors.”
“I found this way of doing [the study], which has limitations, because we don\’t know what a̳l̳i̳e̳n̳s would look like.”
“I think unfortunately it\’s still a pretty secret affair, nobody seems to be willing to talk about it. There is this fear of being afraid to message, but there is very little research on whether it is actually dangerous to do so.”
Caballero understands that this isn\’t necessarily the most sophisticated science, but said he hopes his study will spark a conversation about whether it\’s really risky to send messages into space.
“The fact that the estimated probability of an a̳l̳i̳e̳n̳ invasion is two orders of magnitude lower than that of an asteroid collision that kills the planet should open the door to the next step, which is to have an international debate to determine the conditions under which this will happen. will produce the first serious interstellar strikes.
“A radio or laser message will be sent to a nearby potentially habitable exoplanet,” concludes Caballero.