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"Alien" Wow signal to be answered by National Geographic transmission

Published June 28. 2012 05:01PM

Friday evening you will have the opportunity to send a message to a possible alien civilization to celebrate the anniversary of the Wow! transmission which researchers believe could be our first contact with an alien society as National Geographic Channel's program "Chasing UFOs" is gathering tweets on Twitter to package into a signal.

Those tweets will be beamed back to the area of space in a signal on August 15th on the anniversary of the Wow! transmission being discovered.

Thirty five years ago, there was a signal recorded by the Big Ear telescope at Ohio State University that was so strong and unusual that astronomer Jerry Ehman wrote "WOW!" on the print out and shared it with his colleagues as the first possible contact with an alien civilization. Years later scientists have tried with great futility to record the signal again, but it never reappeared.

The signal's strength led Ehman to believe it could be our first contact, but we have not been able to duplicate it or decipher in the three plus decades since we received it. Ehman and others have also researched the possibility it was earthly transmissions reflected back by a deep space object, but the one sticking point in that theory is the frequency of the transmissions is on a level banned for public use by the Federal Communications Commission which makes it unlikely to have originated from this planet unless it was a military signal. Many scientists still believe it could be an alien transmission but it cannot be proved.

To participate all you need to do is tweet a message to the hash tag #ChasingUFOs between the hours of 8 p.m. Friday, June 29 to 3 a.m. Saturday, June 30. Twitter and National Geographic will condense these messages into an encrypted signal and on August 15 it will be transmitted to the area of the sky in the constellation of Sagittarius where the Wow signal originated 35 years ago.

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