SETI wants you to detect alien laser signals

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Aug 10, 2017

SETI doesn’t just believe in aliens. They believe aliens are broadcasting via radio signals and lasers everywhere—and that you could possibly find them.

The SETI (Searth for ExtraTerrestrial Intelligence) Institute’s newest crowdfunding campaign knows they’re out there, and that so many must be out there that if everyone has E.T.’s on their radar 24/7, they could finally find something that isn’t a false alarm from a telemetry signal that ran into their radio telescope at 3 in the morning. Called “Laser SETI: First-Ever All-Sky All-the-Time-Search,” the project is getting a boost from an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign that is blasting off towards $100,000.

The things you see on Indiegogo never cease to amaze me.

While Laser SETI will still need hi-res cameras and optics designed for astronomy if this thing is going to take off, it’s still exponentially more cost effective than sending satellites to every known corner of the universe. We are just microbes in a universe so vast that just about anything could be hiding in places so far away that they haven’t even been reached by satellites or seen by even the most powerful telescopic eyes from Earth or space. It’s also hard to believe that there isn’t anything else crawling around when our universe is 14 billion years old, which is more than enough time for just about anything, intelligent or otherwise, to evolve.

It's very difficult to imagine that we are alone,” said SETI CEO Bill Diamond for these reasons. “Yet extraterrestrial life still eludes our efforts to find it. Now you have a chance to be a part of the technology that can change that forever."

SETI assumes that aliens are always on air. Whether they are trying to reach us with superpowered lasers, monster radio transmitters or anything else our Earthling brains might have not even dreamed up yet remains to be seen. There have been previous doubts about extraterrestrial beings anywhere from hundreds to billions of light-years away trying to target a planet they don’t even know exists. The idea may strike you as a kind of reverse X-Files.

Laser SETI is the first endeavor to defy this thinking "because it's designed to find a very short ping that doesn't stay on all the time — it can detect a laser flash as short as a microsecond, and one that might not repeat for days, weeks, or even longer," as Diamond explained.

Now watch the video, then take off to the campaign and donate. For science.

(via Seeker)