SETI & Technosignatures

The Breakthrough Listen Search for Intelligent Life: Technosignature Search of Transiting TESS Targets of Interest

By Keith Cowing
January 4, 2022
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The Breakthrough Listen Search for Intelligent Life: Technosignature Search of Transiting TESS Targets of Interest
Sky map of all TESS TOIs (blue dots), with transiting TESS targets analyzed in this paper overlaid as red x’s. The grey shaded region is the zone above declination βˆ’20β—¦ where BL targets are usually observed with the GBT; BL targets below this declination are usually observed at the Parkes Observatory.

The Breakthrough Listen Initiative, as part of its larger mission, is performing the most thorough technosignature search of nearby stars.

Additionally, Breakthrough Listen is collaborating with scientists working on NASAs Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS), to examine TESS Targets of Interest (TOIs) for technosignatures. Here, we present a 1βˆ’11 GHz radio technosignature search of 61 TESS TOIs that were in transit during their Breakthrough Listen observation at the Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope. We performed a narrowband Doppler drift search with a minimum S/N threshold of 10, across a drift rate range of Β±4 Hz s βˆ’1, with a resolution of 3 Hz.

We removed radio frequency interference by comparing signals across cadences of target sources. After interference removal, there are no remaining events in our survey, and therefore no technosignature signals-of-interest detected in this work. This null result implies that at L, S, C, and X bands, fewer than 52%, 20%, 16%, and 15%, respectively, of TESS TOIs possess a transmitter with an equivalent isotropic radiated power greater than a few times 1014 W.

Noah Franz, Steve Croft, Andrew P. V. Siemion, Raffy Traas, Bryan Brzycki, Vishal Gajjar, Howard Isaacson, Matt Lebofsky, David H. E. MacMahon, Danny C. Price, Sofia Z. Sheikh, Julia De Marines, Jamie Drew, S. Pete Worden

Comments: 12 pages; 7 figures; Accepted to The Astronomical Journal
Subjects: Earth and Planetary Astrophysics (astro-ph.EP); Instrumentation and Methods for Astrophysics (astro-ph.IM)
Cite as: arXiv:2201.00918 [astro-ph.EP] (or arXiv:2201.00918v1 [astro-ph.EP] for this version)
Submission history
From: Noah Franz
[v1] Tue, 4 Jan 2022 00:32:36 UTC (1,322 KB)
Astrobiology, SETI,

Explorers Club Fellow, ex-NASA Space Station Payload manager/space biologist, Away Teams, Journalist, Lapsed climber, Synaesthete, Na’Vi-Jedi-Freman-Buddhist-mix, ASL, Devon Island and Everest Base Camp veteran, (he/him) πŸ––πŸ»