[FPSPACE] Planetary Society Opens Earth's First Dedicated Optical SETI Telescope
ljk4 at msn.com
Wed Apr 12 10:45:54 EDT 2006
Planetary Society Opens World's First Dedicated Optical SETI Telescope
New Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence Begins
Pasadena, CA, Today, April 11, 2006, The Planetary Society dedicated a new
optical telescope at an observatory in Harvard, Massachusetts -- one
designed solely to search for light signals from alien civilizations. Read
Opening ceremonies for The Planetary Society's Optical SETI Telescope
featured Project Director Paul Horowitz of Harvard University; Planetary
Society Chairman Neil deGrasse Tyson, director of New York's Hayden
Planetarium; and Society Executive Director Louis Friedman.
"With the launch of The Planetary Society's Optical SETI Telescope," said
Friedman, "we are proud to be part of a new voyage of discovery with this
great Harvard team."
The new telescope is the first dedicated optical SETI telescope in the
world. Its 72-inch primary mirror is larger than that of any optical
telescope in the U.S. east of the Mississippi River.
Under the direction of Horowitz and his team, the optical SETI telescope
will conduct a year round, all-sky survey, scanning the entire swath of our
Milky Way galaxy visible in the northern hemisphere.
Full article here:
Looking for alien lasers, not radios
NewScientist.com news service April 11, 2006
The first optical telescope
dedicated to the hunt for alien
signals, the Planetary Society's
Optical SETI (OSETI) telescope at
Harvard's Oak Ridge Observatory, has
opened. Once running, OSETI's
processors will carry out a trillion
measurements per second, in a
year-round survey of the sky. It
will be able to pick out flashes of
light that are...
Harvard's new telescope to boost search for alien life
Will scan heavens for flashes of light
By Douglas Belkin, Globe Staff | April 12, 2006
Horowitz compared the previous generation of the Optical Search for
Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence, or OSETI, to searching the skies through a
soda straw -- viewing only a very narrow spot of the heavens at once. This
telescope, built for about $400,000, scans a broad line in the sky.
As the Earth moves, the stars pass through that line. In about 200 nights
the scope can observe the entire sky visible from the northern hemisphere.
The pace of observation: 100,000 times faster than any previous scope.
To analyze the massive amount of data being sucked in through the scope's
72-inch mirror, a team of graduate and undergraduate students built a
computer able to wade through 1 trillion bits of information per second --
about as much information as is contained in every book in the Library of
''The technology is absolutely on the cutting edge," said Louis Friedman,
executive director of the Planetary Society, a nonprofit group of scientists
and space enthusiasts that funded the telescope. ''It feels like the Wright
brothers working out of their bike shop; they're using chips never seen
Friedman compared building the scope to launching a space ship. The stakes,
he said, could not be higher.
Full article here:
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