Just to be on the safe side, astronomers at the Green Bank telescope in West Virginia were listening specifically to signals from any electronic device that could bring it to the subject. They did not hear the peep.
But then preview the research material that will be published in Astrophysical journal appeared online this week, which represented the "exotic scenario" in which "Oumuamua was a solar probe built by foreign civilization.
There is no real evidence for this idea.
In fact, most of the study is intended to examine how the sun's radiation would be strongly suppressed by the natural object and contribute to the "unexplained acceleration of Oumuamu". This phenomenon forms the basis for the proposed method of propulsion of spacecraft, called the sailboat, that is how we get from "miracles, strange rocks" to "could be aliens!" The authors of the study justify their speculation with the assertion that the probability of an ordinary comet that intercepts our solar system, after being extracted from its home star, is very small.
As astrophysicist Katie Mack pointed out on Twitter, she comes up with immense explanations for slightly strange phenomena, she is one of the favorite astronomical salon games. (Do you remember the foreign megastructure that turned out to be a star that was powdered?)
This does not mean that you have to put on canned and tin hats in every strange theory.
"As long as each other option is exhausted for a dozen times, even the authors will probably not believe it," Mack said.
Other astronomers were not so dismissed by the speculation of their colleagues.
Paul M. Sutter is tweeted "My publicist asked me for a quote on the story of Oumuamu, who made the rounds. Here it is:
"No," Oumuamu is not a foreign space ship, and the authors of the article regret the open scientific research I would even suggest. "
"Please use this, @fcain, @tariqjmalik!"
Because "Oumuamua is already distant from our solar system, beyond the reach of all telescopes, scientists fall in love with the data they have. Fortunately, there are reams about it – and many of the more likely explanations for comet behavior have not been exhausted.
So, go, Americans, and vote that this is the only world we have, and nobody else is there to save us from ourselves.