SETI Disrupted By Cell Phones in Airplanes?

JarrodH

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Aug 19, 2004
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http://science.slashdot.org/science/05/06/09/177243.shtml?tid=160]

What do you guys think?

If, as recently mentioned, the FCC does allow wireless access on airplanes, could it effectively mean the end of the search for ET? NewScientist has a new article that explains how radio interference from airborne cellphones could drown out faint radio signals from space. Among other concerns astronomers have is that the second harmonic of many cell phones falls in a frequency band that reveals the molecular signature of newborn and dying stars, which is among the 2% of frequencies in this part of the electromagnetic spectrum reserved for use by radio astronomers. Michael Davis, director of projects at California's SETI Institute, stated that a single cellphone on an airplane 100 miles from a radiotelescope could exceed recommended radio noise levels by 10 times. A potential solution that astronomers have suggested is to install a miniture cell transceiver on each airplane, called a picocell, that would act as a relay using a frequency that wouldn't interfere with their work."
 

JarrodH

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Aug 19, 2004
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I was thinking about it over the last couple of days and it might be better if we had some sort of base off the earth looking for Seti signals. With all the radio, cell phone and other transmissions all over the earth, it might be a better way for a "distraction" free listening for signals.
 

JarrodH

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Aug 19, 2004
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Damn the cost! We need to find the aliens out there... or are we the aliens to them???!?
 

Ken g6

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Well, I can think of two solutions. One cheap and very useful, and one expensive but also very useful.

The cheap way is to have most cell phones work with VOIP over WiFi or Bluetooth. This provides instant carrier-independant cell phone access in many places; as well as providing wireless internet on planes.

The expensive way is to put one or more radio telescopes on the far side of the Moon. With all deep space missions well tracked, this could pick up many more interesting signals than an Earth-based telescope ever will.