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SETI Investigates 'Interesting' Signal From Deep Space

But don't get too excited about ET just yet

(Newser) - Are aliens living 95 light-years away reaching out to say hello? OK, probably not, but astronomers are nevertheless intrigued by an unusual signal reported out of Russia, reports the Observer . It seems to be coming from the general vicinity of an ancient star in the constellation Hercules known as HD164595,... More »

Search Begins for Alien Signals Near Bizarre Star

The Allen Telescope Array is all fired up and looking for life

(Newser) - SETI's wide-range telescope is powered up and trained on KIC 8462852—the curious star in the North Hemisphere that's emitting an odd light pattern . The Allen Telescope Array, located a few hundred miles northeast of San Francisco, is actively hunting for alien signals coming from the star's... More »

Unusual Star Raises Talk of Alien 'Megastructures'

SETI may take a closer look

(Newser) - Something very weird has been spotted in space, and a quote from an astronomer at Penn State gets to the heart of why it's so intriguing: "Aliens should always be the very last hypothesis you consider, but this looked like something you would expect an alien civilization to... More »

Russian Billionaire to Spend $100M Hunting for ET

'We should be listening,' says Yuri Milner

(Newser) - In 1960, astronomer Frank Drake pointed a radio telescope at two stars hoping to hear aliens. The $2,000 initiative proved unsuccessful and a recent lack of funding has meant the search for alien communication has fallen by the wayside. Now, in the biggest breakthrough for the Search for Extraterrestrial... More »

Scientist: Aliens Are Likely Huge

Cosmologist Fergus Simpson says they likely weigh 650 lbs

(Newser) - If you're traveling to distant planets anytime soon, you might think twice about raising a ruckus: The inhabitants likely weigh an average of 650 pounds, a cosmologist says. Apparently it all comes down to planet size and the conservation of energy, CNET reports. "Throughout the animal kingdom, species... More »

You Can Name Parts of Pluto

Public invited to submit, vote on, suggestions

(Newser) - Some think Pluto may be welcomed back into the planet fold this year, and now the SETI Institute has more good news for Pluto's fans: The public will get to name its most prominent features. Everyone's invited to the "Our Pluto" website to vote on previously selected... More »

'Vulcan' Wins Pluto's Moon Naming Contest

'Captain Kirk' hails win as Cerberus comes 2nd

(Newser) - The contest to pick Hades-related names for Pluto's fourth and fifth moons is over and the winner will be familiar to Star Trek fans: Vulcan was the runaway winner of the poll at , taking 174,000 votes out of 475,000 cast for 21 candidates. Vulcan is... More »

Moon No. 5 Found for Pluto

Just 6 miles across, P5 is Pluto's smallest moon yet

(Newser) - It's not a chapter in the Twilight series, but it is a new moon: astronomers have discovered a tiny fifth satellite revolving around distant Pluto, reports . One year after P4 was announced, now the Hubble Telescope has spied a fifth moon. Pluto's biggest moon, Charon, is... More »

SETI Reveals 1st Signals in Hunt for Alien Life

But radio signals were generated by human-launched satellites

(Newser) - Good news for ET lovers: We've spotted radio signals from outer space matching what we expect to hear from extraterrestrials. Only problem: The signals were generated by our own satellites orbiting Earth. "Even though these signals are interference ... [the finding provides] a good indication that the first steps... More »

Online Volunteers Should Scour Moon for Alien Signs: Experts

Scientists hope online sleuths may uncover ET technology, mining on HD photos

(Newser) - Some astronomers are seeking to mobilize an army of volunteers to scan online photos of the lunar surface to search for any evidence of ancient alien civilizations. Online cosmic sleuths could scour hundreds of thousands of photos of the moon for any evidence of alien technology, mining and rubbish heaps,... More »

NASA Finds Planet Circling Two Stars

Sadly, it's not Tatooine

(Newser) - NASA has found another decidedly nifty planet. Meet Kepler-16b, the first planet ever verified to have two suns—kind of like Tatooine from Star Wars, NASA noted in its announcement . There’s no way the Saturn-sized world is habitable—it’s at least half gas—but “the discovery confirms... More »

SETI Telescopes Back On, Thanks to 2,286 Alien Fans

Call for funds reels in more than $200K

(Newser) - Thanks to 2,286 people who believe aliens may be out there, SETI's search for radio waves that would prove there is intelligent life in the universe is once again a go, reports the LA Times . Budget cuts shut down SETI's Allen Telescope Array in April , but a... More »

Astronomers Searching 86 Planets for Aliens

SETI project collecting data on planets likeliest to harbor life

(Newser) - American astronomers are searching for signs of alien life on 86 possible Earth-like planets deemed the likeliest to harbor life. The massive Green Bank radio telescope in rural West Virginia will home in on each of the 86—chosen from 1,235 possible planets located by NASA's Kepler telescope—... More »

SETI Hangs Up Phone Line to ET

Budget cuts force institute to shut down search for extraterrestrial life

(Newser) - Budget cuts have forced the SETI Institute in California to shut down its famous search for extraterrestrial life, reports the San Jose Mercury News . The institute can no longer afford to operate its Allen Telescope Array, which has been scanning outer space for sign of communication since 2007. As a... More »

Don't Look for Aliens— Look for Their Robots

SETI expert says we're more likely to find 'thinking machines'

(Newser) - Scientists searching for extraterrestrial life should make sure to look for robot agents of the aliens, says a leading SETI astronomer. The search for life outside earth has so far focused on identifying the building blocks of biochemistry, following the assumption that aliens would meet our definition of "alive.... More »

Physicists: We Need to Look for Alien Tweets

Scientists say SETI has the wrong approach

(Newser) - If aliens are out there and trying to communicate, they are most likely sending short messages—the interstellar equivalent of Tweets, the Telegraph reports. The theory of a cosmic Twitter is being put forth by two physicists calling for a new approach to the long-running Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence project.... More »

Use Your Computer to Find ET

SETI retooling Web site, publishing search program

(Newser) - The massive Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence project headquartered in California is reconfiguring its Web site and revealing its detection program to make it far easier for amateur seekers everywhere to join the quest for alien life in the cosmos. "Soon it will be time for you to get involved,... More »

Aliens May Be Watching Our Soaps: Expert

Life 'definitely' out there, expert says, but very hard to find

(Newser) - Aliens are out there, and they may be watching Survivor, says a premier scientist searching for extraterrestrial life. “We are definitely not alone,” SETI project founder Frank Drake tells Der Spiegel. He worries about TV radio transmitters shooting human entertainment into space, greeting aliens with soap operas or... More »

ET Seekers Win Big Boost

Fringe movement attracts big donors and wide interest as its goes mainstream

(Newser) - The truth is out there, and now there’s funding to find it: Everyone from Bill Gates to Cameron Diaz is embracing the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI), a movement transitioning from X-Files territory to the mainstream, the Wall Street Journal says. One astronomer left last week's prestigious TED conference... More »

If Another Earth Is Out There, Kepler Will Find it

NASA telescope designed to look for life-sustaining planets

(Newser) - If there's truly no place like home, then NASA's new Kepler mission will help scientists prove it. The space telescope, set to launch March 5, will scan the skies for planets with the approximate size and temperature range of Earth. Matches could be candidates for extraterrestrial life; if Kepler finds... More »

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