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  • Published: 30 May 2011
  • ISBN: 9780141944050
  • Imprint: Penguin eBooks
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 256

The Eerie Silence

Are We Alone in the Universe?




The riveting new book from bestselling author, Paul Davies looking at SETI - the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence.

On April 8, 1960, a young American astronomer, Frank Drake, turned a radio telescope toward the star Tau Ceti and listened for several hours to see if he could detect any artificial radio signals. With this modest start began a worldwide project of potentially momentous significance. Known as SETI - Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence - it is an amalgam of science, technology, adventure, curiosity and a bold vision of humanity's destiny. Drake has said that SETI is really a search for ourselves - who we are and what our place might be in the grand cosmic scheme of things.

Yet with one tantalizing exception, SETI has produced only negative results. After millions of hours spent eavesdropping on the cosmos astronomers have detected only the eerie sound of silence. What does that mean? Are we in fact alone in the vastness of the universe? Is ET out there, but not sending any messages our way? Might we be surrounded by messages we simply don't recognize? Is SETI a waste of time and money, or should we press ahead with new and more sensitive antennas? Or look somewhere else? And if a signal were to be received, what then? How would we - or even should we - respond

  • Published: 30 May 2011
  • ISBN: 9780141944050
  • Imprint: Penguin eBooks
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 256

About the author

Paul Davies

Paul Davies is a British-born theoretical physicist, cosmologist, astrobiologist and best-selling author. He is Regents’ Professor and Director of the Beyond Center for Fundamental Concepts in Science at Arizona State University, where he was for five years also Co-Director of the Cosmology Initiative and Principal Investigator of the Center for the Convergence of Physical Science and Cancer Biology. Prior to his move to the USA in 2006, he helped create the Australian Centre for Astrobiology in Sydney. Davies has written over 30 books, many for the general public. He has three honorary doctorates and Fellowship of University College London. In 1995 he was awarded the Templeton Prize in a ceremony at Buckingham Palace for his work on the deeper meaning of science. He was also awarded the Faraday Prize by The Royal Society, the Kelvin Medal by the UK Institute of Physics, the 2011 Robinson Cosmology Prize, and many book awards, as well as three honorary degrees. In June 2007 he was named a Member of the Order of Australia in the Queen’s birthday honours list and in December 2011 he was presented with the Bicentenary Medal of Chile. The asteroid 1992 OG was renamed (6870) Pauldavies in recognition of his work on cosmic impacts. Paul Davies is also known worldwide as a television and radio commentator and is the author of hundreds of newspaper and magazine articles.

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