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Bertrand Russell wrote There are two possibilities Maybe we are alone Maybe we are not Both are equally frightening Jakosky 1 The question of life in the universe is one that leaves many in a state of bewilderment It becomes even more interesting when it leads to another question that of intelligent life in the universe Finding other intelligent civilizations among the interstellar space would greatly affect every aspect of our existence Conversely not finding such a civilization would force us to examine the purpose of our own existence To help answer the question astronomers and scientists set up a program in search for extraterrestrial intelligence This program or SETI was set up to verify by observation that extraterrestrial life does exist SETI tries to prove this by picking up and analyzing radio signals by means of satellites and advanced computers Heidmann 116 The history of the SETI program is quite interesting It started back in 1959 with the help of two famous Cornell University physicists Guiseppi Cocconi and Phil Morrison Both claimed that it would be possible to communicate with other potential extraterrestrial life in space by the use of techniques used in radio astronomy Heidmann 112 Together they voiced their belief that if other alien astronomers elsewhere in the universe possessed radio telescopes that it would be possible to converse between the two Heidmann 112-113 A young astronomer by the name of Francis Drake agreed with the theories of Cocconi and Morrison He proposed building a radio receiver in order to listen for waves of sound being transmitted through space It wasnt until the spring of 1960 that Drake began his first project of SETI Ozma In this project he was the first to conduct a search for signals transmitted from other solar systems For two tedious months Drake pointed an eighty-five foot antenna in the direction of two starts the same age as our sun Tau Ceti and Epsil A single
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