Scientist, professor, and noted presenter of "Wonders of the Universe" Brian Cox has figured out why there has as yet been no first contact with an alien civilization. There are none. Well, to be more precise, there are no alien civilizations extant that have developed space-faring or communications technology to the point where they can travel to or send messages to the Earth. And there won't be, according to Cox. For one reason or another, alien civilizations keep eradicating themselves. And it looks as if mankind will be no exception.
Brian Cox told the Sunday Times that it was very unlikely that humans will ever have a first contact experience with alien beings simply because the more advanced aliens, because he undoubtedly believes that life exists elsewhere in the universe, tend to kill themselves off before they can get to the point of contacting other worlds and beings. It is, as he explained, an answer to the Fermi Paradox.
For those not in the know, the Fermi Paradox is the idea offered up by the inventor of the nuclear reactor, physicist Enrico Fermi, who, when confronted with the debate of whether or not alien life existed, simply asked where were the aliens that should exist. If the universe was indeed teeming with life, as math models suggested, and an intelligent race could conceivably populate a galaxy in roughly 10 million years, there should be no reason why at least one other intelligent race had not contacted or been detected by humans. Unless there were no living intelligent aliens to do the contacting.
"One solution to the Fermi paradox is that it is not possible to run a world that has the power to destroy itself and that needs global collaborative solutions to prevent that," Cox told the Sunday Times.
"It may be that the growth of science and engineering inevitably outstrips the development of political expertise, leading to disaster."He added ominously, "We could be approaching that position."
If one has been following politics, Cox's words hit close to the mark. As has been reported by the Inquisitr, an escalation in tension between Russia and the United States has brought relations between the two countries to a point where there appears to a resumption to the nuclear brinksmanship that overshadowed world politics during the Cold War. Fears of an impending World War 3 have been on the rise as the U.S. and Russia have pushed to modernize their nuclear weapons arsenals, Russia has withdrawn from a nuclear non-proliferation treaty, and Russia has resumed flying nuclear bomber patrols bordering American airspace, which hasn't been done since the 1990s.
What Brian Cox has suggested, that intelligent alien civilizations never reach beyond a certain point of development before they destroy themselves, is known among scientists as "The Great Filter." First proposed by economist Robin Hanson in 1996, the Great Filter was an answer to the Fermi Paradox which presented a probability threshold with regard to alien existence that says, according to Fraser Cain at Universe Today, that 100 percent of all alien civilizations have thus far been wiped out. The lack of evidence of other intelligent beings suggests that either the rise of intelligent life is particularly difficult or alien civilizations have a propensity for early self-destruction.
Professor Cox is currently promoting a new book, Universal: A Guide to the Cosmos, which he co-wrote with fellow Manchester University physicist Jeff Forshaw. In it, according to the Daily Mail, the two propose that the Big Bang that created our universe was just one in a succession of Big Bangs and that there are multiple universes, each with its own alien laws of physics that operate differently than ours.
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