Tabby's Star

Tabby's Star, also known as Boyajian's Star and WTF Star, or known by its common name KIC 8462852, approximately 1,470 light-years (450 pc) from Earth, was discovered by citizen scientists as part of the Planet Hunters project. In September 2015, astronomer Tabetha Boyajian, the lead author of the study of the star showed that the star occasionally rapidly drops in brightness by a whooping 22 percent. The star's brightness has also been seen to fade slowly over the decade of research.


Image: NASA

The short term variation was picked up by the Kepler telescope, whose job was to find alien planets by analyzing the light of distant stars, looking for dips in their starlight, as a planet passed in front of them. However unlike the dimming of Tabby’s star, the dimming caused by the planet is evenly spaced, as it happens each time the planet completes an orbit.


Scientists and researchers have been baffled by this phenomenon and have given various reasons to justify the dip in sunlight which has remained constant.


Many scientists believe that a swarm of comets plunged into the inner regions of the stars solar system and produced huge amounts of dust which caused the dimming, but the only drawback of this theory was that dust from comets don’t stay suspended for a long time in space, hence, it could not justify the long term dimming patterns of tabby’s star.


Probably the most interesting theory that surrounds the dip in light patterns of Tabby’s star can be explained by involving alien mega-structures, such as a swarm of Dyson Spheres which harvest the energy of the sun. The alien planet orbiting closest to the sun might have an advanced civilization which created a swarm of Dyson Sphere around the sun which might explain the consistent even dip in the sunlight, since the congregation is close to each other and not unevenly spread in front of the sun.


For now it’s just a theory which is yet to be proved once NASA launches the new James Webb telescope in October 2021.

 

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