Turns out that mysterious signal SETI found is almost certainly not aliens

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Sep 1, 2016, 12:07 PM EDT

Researchers at SETI were (very) cautiously optimistic about a mysterious new signal that could’ve come from extraterrestrials a few star systems away — but it seems the much more likely explanation is the right one.

The Special Astrophysical Observatory of the Russian Academy of Sciences has released a statement on the signal, noting, “Subsequent processing and analysis of the signal revealed its most probable terrestrial origin.” Put simply: It’s almost certainly not aliens. Instead, it was probably an Earth-based source (i.e. military tech, etc.). Which, yeah, was always the more likely explanation. But hey, dare to dream, would-be alien hunters.

Scientists originally believed the mysterious signal was coming from a 6.3-billion-year-old star located 95 light-years away from Earth in the Hercules constellation. It’s a system with at least one planet, so yeah, it made some sense. The original signal was detected on May 15, 2015, at a wavelength of 2.7 cm. The estimated amplitude of the signal was 750 mJy.

SETI was extremely cautious in its wording when the signal was first revealed, but word of the potential discovery spread like wildfire (we covered it here, with a healthy dose of excited skepticism). Sadly, it looks like we’ll have to keep waiting to meet our future alien overlords.

(Via Ars Technica)