Signal Scanners are small devices shoot an orange beam up into the sky, and can be found in abundance, scattered across most planets and near outposts and shelters. They serve one purpose, and that is the identification of potential exploration points. These are one of the most important facets of independent discovery, as they will point you towards potential new items and upgrades.
To access these devices you must first create a bypass chip, these are easily created with basic components found nearby. Use the chip, and you will be greeted with a menu. There are four opportunities here; Monolith, Colonial Outpost, Transmission, and Shelter.
Monoliths are language based relics that offers a glimpse into the history of the local species. To correctly interact with these, you must reply in such a way that is suitable to the language and species. You can find out more about that in the Alien sections, and language section of the guide.
Colonial Outposts house local aliens who can be spoken to and interacted with, and usually contain another signal scanner. Here you will likely gain access to a blueprint if the alien is interacted with efficiently, and a few more with some thorough exploration. They are also sometimes abandoned and locked, and getting in will require some updated firepower. Manufacturing facilities, for instance, will likely offer you the best opportunity for new blueprints.
Transmissions are the signals sent out from abandoned colonial outposts which offer to you a puzzle. The first is a mathematics puzzle involving a sequence of numbers and how the sequence ends. The second of which is a language puzzle that traditionally grants a blueprint of a quality that directly correlates with distance traveled through the galaxy. It may also be an observatory, which will scan the stars for points of interest once you are granted access through puzzle solving.
Shelters come in two flavors, drop pods (preferred) and small houses, usually abandoned. Drop pods are one of the few ways you can expand the inventory of your Exo-Suit, by paying to upgrade the total space at a compounding rate of Tx10,000 where T equals the total number of additional tiles. The abandoned houses will contain blueprints and items to help you on your journey.