As it is concluded that many extraterrestrial beings (ETI) will be older and more technologically advanced than humanity, those who conduct extraterrestrial beings research (SETI) have to consider what a more advanced species can do. One particularly radical idea suggests that space-flying civilizations could use radiation emitted from black holes (Hawking radiation) to generate power.
Based on this, Louis Crane – a mathematician at Kansas State University (KSU) – recently wrote a study showing how measurements using gamma telescopes can find evidence of spacecraft supported by tiny artificial black holes.
In the first paper, Crane and Westmoreland explored the possibility of using Hawking radiation from an artificial black hole. They decided that the probability was at its limit, but concluded that quantum gravity effects, currently unknown, could be a problem.
In his latest Paper, Crane went a step further, explaining how the resulting gamma rays such a system would produce could help search for ETIs.
Black hole spacecraft
The concept of a black-hole spacecraft was first introduced in 1975 by renowned sci-fi author Arthur C. It was introduced in the novel Imperial Earth, published by Clarke. A similar idea was presented by Charles Sheffield in his 1978 short story “Killing Vector.” Either way, Clarke and Sheffield explain how advanced civilizations can extract energy from black holes to meet their energy needs. In addition to the fact that this whole concept is pure sci-fi, the ability to use a black hole to generate power will provide quite serious advantages.
In addition, signatures associated with such technological activities (i.e., “techno-signatures”) will indicate a very high level of progress. Given the energy requirements required to create an artificial black hole, as well as the technical difficulties associated with using it, the process would be anything less than a Type II civilization on the Kardashev Scale.
Crane: “to produce an artificial black hole, we will need to focus a billion-ton gamma-ray laser on nuclear dimensions. It’s like making nuclear bombs as high-tech as cars in the world. Only the scale of this is beyond the current world economy. A civilization that uses the solar system completely will have resources.”
This is not even the least of the technical challenges, many of which are beyond what humanity can do. These include the amount of power they can expend to operate a gamma-ray laser, where that energy will be stored, and how these emissions will be focused on an atomic field. As Crane points out, there are suggestions as to how this could be done, but those suggestions remain speculative.
In addition to the concept, the idea of a black hole-supported civilization is also very interesting because of the possibilities it offers for SETI Research.
As with other signs of technological activity (aka “techno-signature”), a civilization with tiny, artificial black holes created by gamma-ray lasers can be detected thanks to a small thing known as “spill-over.”
Likewise, SETI researchers can rely on gamma-ray telescopes to look for spill-over signs from gamma-ray lasers. As Crane said:
“If some advanced civilizations already had such a starship, existing vhe gamma-ray telescopes could detect it at a distance of 100 to 1000 light-years if we were in the beam. They could be distinguished from natural sources by their ever-changing Redshift over the years. For these astronomers to investigate, point-like gamma-ray sources will need to hold time-series frequency curves. It doesn’t look like it’s something they’re doing right now. “
Perhaps the most exciting is the fact that astronomers have been able to use this kind of method for energy production. It is the fact that the species may have found signs of Kardashev civilization.
As Crane explains, some point-like gamma-ray sources have been detected in our universe that have no natural explanation.
Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope (FGST), such as space-based telescopes and the high energy stereoscopic system (HESS) and multi-energy radiation imaging telescope Array System (VERITAS) based facilities by using these sources in nature, such as future observations could help you determine whether there is actually artificial.
Combined with the next generation of devices with higher resolution and imaging capabilities, gamma-ray laser propagation and other potential technologies may be waiting to be identified there.
In the meantime, let’s also point out that humanity still needs to go a long way before it starts thinking about building this kind of technology.