Feeds

Astroboffins moot massive Moon-mirror heliograph

How to catch ET's eye

High performance access to file storage

A pair of US astrobiologists have come up with a cunningly simply way of attracting the attention of alien lifeforms - just cover half the Moon's surface with mirrors to throw back some extra sunlight in ET's direction.

According to New Scientist, Shawn Domagal-Goldman and Jacob Haqq-Misra of Pennsylvania State University in State College reckon the Moon-mirror could act as a kind of heliograph to beam a "code of prime number flashes" - just so distant beings fully get the message.

As an added bonus, when the mirrors aren't chatting to the universe, they could be "flipped" to present photovoltaic cells sunwards, generating electricity for microwave dispatch back to Earth.

Domagal-Goldman, who outlined the plan to the recent 2008 Astrobiology Science Conference in Santa Clara, California, said: "You could help solve the climate crisis, too."

Sorted. We can't help feeling though, that the fatal flaw in this scheme is how to protect delicate lunar mirror/solar panel installations from apocalyptic dwarf star impact.

Doubtless the lads have a parabolic collector solar death ray weapon in mind for this eventuality, one which doubles as the world's largest eco-friendly barbecue when not fending off hostile bodies. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Elon Musk's LEAKY THRUSTER gas stalls Space Station supply run
Helium seeps from Falcon 9 first stage, delays new legs for NASA robonaut
Solar-powered aircraft unveiled for round-the-world flight
It's going to be a slow and sleepy flight for the pilots
Russian deputy PM: 'We are coming to the Moon FOREVER'
Plans to annex Earth's satellite with permanent base by 2030
LOHAN's Punch and Judy show relaunches Thursday
Weather looking good for second pop at test flights
Saturn spotted spawning new FEMTO-MOON
Icy 'Peggy' looks to be leaving the outer rings
Discovery time for 200m WONDER MATERIALS shaved from 4 MILLENNIA... to 4 years
Alloy, Alloy: Boffins in speed-classification breakthrough
India's GPS alternative launches second satellite
Closed satnav system due to have all seven birds aloft by 2016
Curiosity finds not-very-Australian-shaped rock on Mars
File under 'messianic pastries' and move on, people
Top Secret US payload launched into space successfully
Clandestine NRO spacecraft sets off on its unknown mission
prev story

Whitepapers

Mainstay ROI - Does application security pay?
In this whitepaper learn how you and your enterprise might benefit from better software security.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.