SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) has been looking for "aliens" since 1960 and was formed by an American astronomer name Frank Drake. The SETI program is basically huge satellite dishes pointing toward the sky to search for "messages" sent purposely toward Earth. They use a set of 42 antennas from the Allen Telescope Array in California.They can listen to 9 billion different channels. As you should know the universe is amazingly huge, at least 100 billion light years in diameter. We humans have been sending out radio signals for the past 100 years taken out of the life of the universe which is at least 10 billion years old. The nearby stars have seen the simpsons. If we were to receive a signal the civilization would be at least maybe hundreds of thousands of years old probably even long gone or way too advanced for us to even imagine. SETI doesn't just set their satellites at random stars thankfully, they set them towards stars they think have planets with intelligent life on them. They have a problem with interference signals that hey overreact to which they call radio interference problem. They do find a lot of strong signals but they are not from aliens they are from our own signals. 20 years ago exoplanets (planets orbiting another sun)were believed to be rare, but the Kepler telescope proves this wrong finding about 10 planets a day! Planets can even outnumber stars 2 to 1! If we were to receive a signal it would probably not be a language we have here on Earth. Decoders would have to decode it. We have sent out two voyagers that will leave our solar system sooner or later they are called Voyager 1 and 2. We have put a phonograph record on these probes holding the sounds of Earth. These voyagers will not reach the nearest star for another 80 thousand years. Until we make a technology that can at least reach the speed of light I don't think we'll be leaving our solar system anytime soon. I mean the solar system is 1 light year in diameter. So it would take us at the speed of light 1 year to get from one side of the solar system, to the other. The SETI program has a live screensaver that connects to SETI that you can download and they think that if they do find an alien signal it won't be from an expert, it could be from you!It's called seti@home. Who knows, you may find the breakthrough of human history.
Are We Alone?
March 14, 2012