April 4, 2018 D: Drake Equation (Chance of meeting up with aliens).
What we know up until this point: Our published experiment of a two-dimensional fluid-fluid relational boundary has been proven both in the laboratory and mathematically through The General Energy Equation for normal space and time. The experiment is an analog of other behaviors in our universe that may be too difficult to experiment on in relativistic time and space. Our experiment suggest that the most numerous stars, smaller than our sun (type M) may form accretion disks (looking like Saturn’s rings) of matter about them that will produce a number of equally spaced smaller planets (Trappist I, for example). So that there are probably many Earth-like planets in the habitable zone in our universe. The experiment also shows how a pre-living droplet can naturally and easily divide in half. Now all we need are nucleic acid molecules to get caught up into these cleaving precursor cells, then natural selection, and we have life.
Okay, so, The Drake Equation is an algebraic “equation” that multiplies factors together (the probabilities of finding life on planets around suns in our galaxy). N is equal to the number of intelligent civilizations out there. So far, since we don’t really know that much about exactly what factors to use, or the amount of each factor, we are left with a lot of unknowns, and so it is impossible to get accurate results. To learn more about the factors like how many habitable planets have at least cellular life, or how many have what we think of as intelligent life, or how many suns in our galaxy have Earth-sized planets in the proper Goldilocks Zone (a distance from their sun so as to have liquid water and support life is not known, but we’re learning more each day. The big problem with The Drake Equation is that not only don’t we know the number of factors, but if any or all of them are less than one, then they diminish the number of predicted civilizations out there.
In order to get a more accurate use of the Drake equation, I suggest we assume there is another civilization out there. With our radio telescopes what we’re trying to make is contact (to get a better feel for this idea you might want to read CONTACT the book by an astronomer Carl Sagan whose main character Jill Tarter (a real radio astronomer with SETI (The Search For Extraterrestrial Intelligence) suggests a first alien encounter via radio waves (radio waves are long energy waves that pass through lots of matter, so we can see farther into our galaxy).
So let’s say there are two civilizations (N=2: Us and Them). Since WWII (1935) our radio signals have reached planets orbiting suns that are about 80 light years away. If our radio and television signals (also radio waves) were to beam out from the Earth spherically (360 degrees in all directions), the signals would lose intensity but they would reach all suns 80 light years out. To receive a signal from another civilization, we’d have to wait twice the distance to the planet in years to receive an answer. So far we haven’t received a signal from stars in that 80 light year radius. We have discovered an Earth-like planet orbiting M-class Proxima Centauri (the closest star to our sun = 4 light years away), but we haven’t heard back from them. There are many reasons for not hearing back from another civilization. The signal hasn’t gotten there yet, the signal is too weak, our detection of the signal is not good enough, and others (see Fermi’s Paradox to learn about other possible reasons that we haven’t made contact). But according to my way of manipulating The Drake Equation, the other civilization learns about us first, then it has the prerogative to answer or not for a variety of reasons (again, see Fermi’s Paradox).