SETI Satellites interfering with other space signals


Larry Klaes (lklaes@bbn.com)
Mon, 12 Jul 1999 09:15:01 -0400


>From: Marcia Steelman <steelm@bellsouth.net>
>To: <setiathome@klx.com>
>Sent: Saturday, July 10, 1999 3:14 PM
>Subject: We better find ET quickly...
>
>Hi,
>
>Apparently if we don't find ET soon, it may be too late. According to
>the article below, the space junk may be interfering with the signals.
>
>What do you think?
>
>Marcia
>
>- -------------------------------------------------------------------------
>Disclaimer: this article is here reproduced for academic purposes only.
>
>NEWSWEEK
>WEEKEND EDITION, July 10-11, 1999
>
>Space Jam
>
>For years, satellites have been invaluable to research and
>telecommunications, but now they're sending astronomers into orbit. They
>are so numerous that their signals are rapidly filling up the
>electromagnetic spectrum, and without spectrum space, the scientists
>will be unable to look at cosmic bodies and seek out chemical signatures
>along certain frequencies. "This is real pollution in a sense that it's
>something that makes it impossible to carry out science," said Miller M.
>Goss of the National Radio Astronomy Observatories in Socorro, NM.
>
>Next week, astronomers from around the globe will gather at the United
>Nations headquarters in Vienna to discuss the threat posed by the
>changing environment in space. The International Astronomical Union
>symposium, titled "Preserving the Astronomical Sky", will include forums
>on space junk, artificial light, and increased use of radio frequencies
>for
>satellites and other commercial communications. "Because astronomers
>must use extremely sensitive instruments to study very faint and distant
>objects in the universe, they are the first to feel the effects of this
>degradation," said Dr. Johannes Andersen, general secretary of the
>International Astronomical Union. - Yuval Rosenberg
>==
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>------------------------------
>
>Date: Mon, 12 Jul 1999 10:00:17 +0100
>From: Peter Harding <SixteenPintsANight@Beer.com>
>Subject: Re: We better find ET quickly...
>
>Marcia Steelman wrote:
>> Apparently if we don't find ET soon, it may be too late. According to
>> the article below, the space junk may be interfering with the signals.
>
>I think this is already definitely happening, and they're aware of it.
>As it is they've taken down their top 20 peaks page
>http://setiathome.ssl.berkeley.edu/stats/spikes_down.html because all
>the noise is so obviously earthly in origin.
>
>All is not lost however. There *are* ways of telling if your signal came
>from Betelgeuse or Los Angeles. One for example is the phenomenon known
>as "dispersion" where signals of different frequency travel at different
>speeds (and arrive at different times) when they travel through the
>(albeit thin) material of space. I'm sure the >(albeit thin) material of space. I'm sure the SETI@Home team have a
>whole great barrage of hard science ready to differentiate ET from Gerry
>Springer.
>
>The article is really about pollution of weak (distant) signals of
>interest to astronomers. This is slightly different and reminds me of
>the difference between analogue and digital TV (a hot topic here in the
>UK). Astronomers are interested in the quality of the analogue signal
>and are rightly annoyed by the pollution. ET hunters will be happy to
>just hear someone say "Hello" even if the signal is degraded; the
>message still gets through just as clearly provided you can understand
>it at all.
>
>- --
>http://i.am/getting_married
>==
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>------------------------------
>
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