Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Alien Talk: SETI

Today, alien is one of the most fascinating word for anyone at any part of globe. People are very much aware about the questions like- Who do we call Aliens? Etc.

On the other hand if we ask someone about SETI, only one in a group of eight persons will be able to answer. This is really sad.

The reason for writing this blog is to create awareness about SETI, its objectives and goals along with its history among the mass. You can also clear you questions and misconceptions about aliens and SETI at this blog by writing us.

The major topics which in general an article on Aliens and SETI should cover are:- Foundation of SETI Research, Spinning Neutron Stars or Pulsars, Project Ozma and Drake Equation. We will be covering all of this in various blog posts.

SETI stands for Search for Extra-terrestrial Intelligence. It is the science of search for the existence of any alien race, by detecting the various signals coming from the outer space, for the search of an artificial signal from any alien civilization.The idea of SETI was laid in year 1959 after the publication of a paper in British journal Nature by Giuseppe Cocconi and Philip Morrison. In this paper, the probability of the existence of any alien civilization and the means to detect there existence were discussed.
Radio waves were chosen as the means of communication because of their capability to travel huge distances between stars, and also for their generation with comparatively less power. The signals that we commonly use like the radio signals, television signals, satellite signals, and the radar signals are being spread at the various parts throughout the galaxy and the universe, so there is also a great possibility that these signals might have already been detected by someone.

At about the same time when Cocconi and Morrison’s paper got published an astronomer Frank Drake was laying the foundation of the first SETI research. His search was named as Project Ozma and begun in year 1960. In Project Ozma, the two nearest sun like stars, namely, Tau Ceti and Epsilon Eridani were detected for an artificial signal, in other words, an alien signal. However, Project Ozma could not detect an alien signal but it laid the foundation for SETI searches.

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