SETI searchers: We still haven't found what we're looking for

Say 'interesting radio signal' probably from boring old Earth

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Stand down, one and all: there's not even cool new science in this week's “alien signal”, let alone a SETI success: the signal seems to have come from "terrestrial origins".

The odd signal turned up over the weekend: an 11 GHz picked up by Russia's RATAN-600 telescope.

The original observation, it was thought, might have originated from a star system called HD164595; if it had, it would have represented a stupendous energy output.

Organisations like the SETI Institute were cautious from the start, calling the signal “interesting” and saying the signal would have to be followed up with other telescopes.

Those other telescopes can go back to their scheduled programming, because RATAN-600's operators, the Special Astrophysical Observatory of the Russian Academy of Sciences, has issued this statement.

“Subsequent processing and analysis of the signal revealed its most probable terrestrial origin,” the observatory remarks.

According to NPR, the academy's director Alexander Ipatov is cited by state newsagency Tass as saying such a signal had been picked up in the past, and that “an additional check [had shown that it was emanating from a Soviet military satellite, which had not been entered into any of the catalogs of celestial bodies.”

At the time of writing, the Tass link was unresponsive.

The observatory concluded: "It can be said with confidence that no sought-for signal has been detected yet."®


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