Fifty years after a mysterious radio signal was received by a radio telescope on Earth, astronomers have claimed to have found its source.
At 11:16 pm on August 15, 1977, a radio telescope picked up an unusual signal that lasted only 1 minute 12 seconds. The radio signal was detected by the Big Year radio telescope and 45 years later it is still a potential candidate for an alien source.
Astronomer Jerry Ehman named the signal “Wow” when he saw the printout. He circled it and wrote ‘Wow’ with a mysterious name.
In a recent study published in the International Journal of Astrobiology, the 40-year-old signal was thought to have come from a Sun-like star 1,800 light-years away.
The Gaia Archive contains data on 66 G and K-type stars, but only one of them has been identified as a potential Sun-like star. Hydrogen clouds from comets 266 / P Christensen and P / 2008 Y2 are thought to be the cause of the signal generation.
Until October 2020, the “Wow” signal remains the strongest possible SETI (The Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) signal.
The study further states that this potential source, 2MASS 19281982-2640123, has become a great target for conducting observations in search of techno-signatures. The other two candidate stars have a luminosity error gap that captures sunlight, and 14 additional candidates have been discovered as potential sun-like stars, although their brightness estimates are uncertain.
The signal has not been repeated since 1977. Many observation centers have been doing follow-up research in the area for years and have not found another.