In a recent paper a scientist ponders what it would take for future intelligent aliens to survive in an ever-changing cosmic environment. As the universe keeps expanding, the alien life forms will become isolated and in a desperate need of power. It seems like the energy from the stars could be the only way for extraterrestrials to maintain their civilizations in the future.
The potential usage of Dyson spheres
This idea was outlined by Dan Hopper, who is a senior scientist at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory in Illinois. According to him, the alien civilizations could use the concept of theoretical structures called Dyson spheres. These are the engineered structures consisting of satellites working in a similar way to solar panels. First officially proposed by physicist Freeman Dyson, Dyson spheres could be built around a star, covering its surface and capturing its energy.
The scientist developed this concept even further, explaining that the energy collected from a star could be used to move such star to the center of the civilization in order to find protection from the expansion of the universe in the star’s gravitation.
The expansion of the universe and its consequences
Due to the impact of dark energy, the universe keeps on expanding at a faster and faster rate. This results in growing distances between stars, which in turn can isolate alien civilizations and limit their energy resources. It is very likely that extraterrestrials would be left with no other choice but to harvest and store the stellar energy.
According to Hopper, it could still take about 100 billion years for the universe to expand to the point where it would be necessary for the intelligent civilizations to use Dyson spheres-like technology. However, with the rapid expansion of space, this is inevitable, and aliens will have to find a way to create real-life Dyson spheres.
Brad is a former Senior Fellow at the Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism at Brandeis University, is an award-winning travel, culture, and parenting writer. His writing has appeared in many of the Canada’s most respected and credible publications, including the Toronto Star, CBC News and on the cover of Smithsonian Magazine. A meticulous researcher who’s not afraid to be controversial, he is nationally known as a journalist who opens people’s eyes to the realities behind accepted practices in the care of children. Brad is a contributing journalist to Advocator.ca