Are Radio Pulsars Extraterrestrial Communication Beacons?

Very Large Array Telescope in New Mexico (National Radio Astronomy Observatory)

Very Large Array Telescope in New Mexico (National Radio Astronomy Observatory)

by Paul A. LaViolette
The Starburst Foundation
J. Astrobiology & Outreach 4 (2016): 148.

Abstract

Evidence is presented that radio pulsars may be artificially engineered beacons of extraterrestrial intelligence (ETI) origin. It is proposed that they are beaming signals to various Galactic locations including our solar system and that their primary purpose may be for interstellar navigation. More significantly, about half a dozen pulsars appear to be conveying a message intended for our Galactic locale by marking key positional sky locations.  They appear to make reference to the center of our Galaxy, which is a logical shared reference point for interstellar communication. The Millisecond Pulsar (PSR1937+21) is noted to be the closest pulsar to the point that lies one-radian from the Galactic center along the galactic plane. The chance that a pulsar would be positioned at this key location and also display the highly unique attention-getting characteristics of the Millisecond Pulsar is estimated to be one chance in 7.6 trillion. Other pulsars that appear to be involved in conveying this message include the Eclipsing Binary Millisecond pulsar (1957+20) and PSR 1930+22, both of which make highly improbable alignments relative to the Millisecond Pulsar position, the Crab and Vela pulsars, and PSR 0525+21. All display one or more unusual attention-getting characteristics. A method is proposed whereby a civilization magnetically modulates the cosmic ray flux of a neutron star to produce stationary, broadband, targeted synchrotron beams having pulsar-like signal characteristics. Also a lower tech approach is proposed that instead modulates the relativistic electron beam from a linear particle accelerator to produce a free electron laser beam.

 Paper Download: pulsar-ETI.pdf (File size: 0.5 MB)
copyright 2014, P. LaViolette