The story behind the Alien Megastructure surrounding KIC 8462852, aka Tabby’s star, has just gotten more mysterious as researchers have spotted the star dimmed in incredibly dramatic, never-before-seen ways.
One of the most amazing stars in our galaxy, KIC 8462852, aka Tabby’s star, has been the subject of debate in recent months.
The main reason? Well, the star has some really strange fluctuations in brightness that could be the ultimate evidence of the existence of an alien megastructure –a Dyson Sphere— constructed by a highly advanced alien civilization around the star, in order to harness energy from it.
But as if the past six months of studies weren’t strange enough, a new study has discovered that the brightness of the star has dramatically decreased in an extremely short period of time, as if an artificial structure was ACTUALLY interacting with the star.
In a new study published in arXiv which has still not been peer-reviewed, Ben Montet from Caltech and colleague Joshua Simon of the Carnegie Institute measure the brightness from the KIC 8462852, aka Tabby’s star that the Kepler Space Telescope recorded during its four-year mission.
Strangely, they discovered that the star, for the first years dimmed around 0.34 percent per year.
Then, something unexpected was found. The light levels drastically dropped by about 2.5 percent in just 200 days, before the star regained its original slow fading rate.
Interestingly, in their quest to try and explain the anomalous pattern exhibited by Tabby’s star, astronomers took a look at 500 other nearby stars searching for similar patterns. However, no other behavior akin to that of Tabby’s star was found.
“The part that really surprised me was just how rapid and non-linear it was,” Montet told Gizmodo.
“We spent a long time trying to convince ourselves this wasn’t real. We just weren’t able to.”
“These results introduce us to another delightfully unexpected piece of the puzzle,” Tabetha Boyajian, one of the star’s discoverers and the namesake of the Tabby’s Star nickname, told Popular Science.
So what causes the mysterious dips in brightness?
One theory is a humongous Alien Megastructure surrounding the star.
In an effort to get to the bottom of the mystery surrounding Tabby’s star, researchers launched a fundraising campaign that will allow them to investigate in detail the light flickering and what’s behind it.
Previously, the Kepler Space Telescope monitored the enigmatic star for a period of FOUR years, observing two mysterious incidents in 2011 and 2013, when the light emitted by the mystery star dimmed in incredibly dramatic, never-before-seen ways, raising numerous questions along the way.
According to a study by the Louisiana State University (LSU), Tabby’s star has had a reduction of approximately 22 percent, which seems to indicate there is something gigantic moving past the star.
The most unlikely yet popular theory is that the reductions in the brightness of the sun are produced by a massive Dyson Sphere or the construction of one. A Dyson sphere is an enormous astronomical structure that encompasses a star which would allow a highly advanced civilization –Type II according to the Kardashev Scale— to take advantage of the energy of the sun.