Thursday, July 18, 2024

Humans decode an ‘alien message’ from Red Planet. Here’s what was hidden in the signal

The impossible was made possible by a father and daughter duo when they decoded an ‘alien’ signal from Mars.

The task which was assigned by various governments to different experts was cracked by the civilians. The historical task was completed after the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) Institute released an ‘alien message’.

The company’s project ‘A Sign In Space’ was a kind of intergalactic piece of ‘global theatre’. And the man behind this project was Daniela de Paulis.

“Throughout history, humanity has searched for meaning in powerful and transformative phenomena. Receiving a message from an extraterrestrial civilisation would be a profoundly transformational experience for all humankind,” de Paulis was quoted as saying by media outlets.

“A Sign in Space offers the unprecedented opportunity to tangibly rehearse and prepare for this scenario through global collaboration, fostering an open-ended search for meaning across all cultures and disciplines,” he added.

An encoded message was sent by the project from the European Space Agency’s ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter back to Earth in May 2023. More than a year after it was first released, the ‘alien message’ was finally encrypted.

What was found in the decoded signal?
De Paulis was sent the correct solution of the signal by the father and daughter duo on June 7.

The father and daughter investigated the message with the possibility that it was connected with the computation model known as the cellular automaton. The pair used the Unity video game engine and placed the ‘alien message’ through 6,625 transformations to turn the code into something tangible.

The two of them found that the signal was an image of five amino acids, all of which were represented by blocks of various pixels. For example, one block presented hydrogen, six for carbon, seven for nitrogen, and eight for oxygen.

Before the code was solved by the father and daughter duo, the message was taken up by three radio astronomy observatories – the Medicina Radio Astronomical Station Observatory, Italy, the Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope, West Virginia and the SETI Institute’s Allen Telescope Array, California.

Meanwhile, ATA Project Scientist Dr Wael Farah said, “This experiment is an opportunity for the world to learn how the SETI community, in all its diversity, will work together to receive, process, analyse, and understand the meaning of a potential extraterrestrial signal.”

(With inputs from agencies)

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