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Stephen Hawking’s alien search project detected radio pulses in a far off galaxy

A multi-million dollar project established to find alien life has made recorded radio frequencies three billion light years from earth.

The Breakthrough Listen project – a collaboration between scientist Stephen Hawking and Russian billionaire Yuri Milner – has been trawling the galaxies for signs of aliens since being established in early 2016.

The project looks to target communications made by alien life, specifically looking for radio frequencies or other pulses. Using a network of satellite dishes and telescopes – including the Parkes Observatory in New South Wales – Breakthrough Listen has previously detected “fast radio bursts” in far flung corners of the galaxy.

These most recent findings however are a cause for excitement. Unlike previous recordings, the latest findings have all come from the same source. There have been approximately 15 recorded, and they are stronger than any that have previously been seen.

As yet, scientists are split on what the signals might be. Some say they could be “emanating from black holes or rotating neutron stars with extremely strong magnetic fields“. Others are a little more hopeful that we’ve finally found intelligent life in the universe – and it’s apparently trying to get in touch with us.

Just what we would do if the radio pulses are genuinely coming from an intelligent being on the other side of the universe remains to be seen. The location – known as FRB 121102 – is three billion light years away in a dwarf galaxy.

The findings were originally reported in the Astronomers Telegram and have now been widely circulated across the web.

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