Riding the wave of a supernova to go interstellar

When it comes to the challenges posed by interstellar travel, there are no easy answers. The distances are immense, the amount of energy needed to make the journey is tremendous, and the time scales involved are (no pun!) ...

Looking for lurkers —a new way to do SETI

The most recently discovered group of rocky bodies nearby Earth are termed co-orbital objects. These may have been an attractive location for extraterrestrial intelligence (ETI) to locate a probe to observe Earth throughout ...

Using black holes to conquer space: The halo drive

The idea of traveling to another star system has been the dream of people long before the first rockets and astronauts were sent to space. But despite all the progress we have made since the beginning of the Space Age, interstellar ...

Why sailing to the stars has suddenly become a realistic goal

It takes a bold person to declare that interstellar travel is now within our grasp. Physicist Stephen Hawking has shown that he is just that, taking part in the Breakthrough Starshot initiative. The project has announced ...

Enrico Fermi and extraterrestrial intelligence

It's become a kind of legend, like Newton and the apple or George Washington and the cherry tree. One day in 1950, the great physicist Enrico Fermi sat down to lunch with colleagues at the Fuller Lodge at Los Alamos National ...

Talking to aliens

What do you say to a space alien? This question might not be the foremost puzzle in your life, but it was the subject of a lively two-day conference at California's SETI Institute this week.

Climate change may prevent contact with alien civilisations

Enrico Fermi, when asked about intelligent life on other planets, famously replied, "Where are they?" Any civilisation advanced enough to undertake interstellar travel would, he argued, in a brief period of cosmic time, populate ...

An interstellar journey for CubeSats

In Greek mythology, Icarus was the impulsive son who ignored his father's warning about flying too close to the sun. But the students in the Drexel University chapter of Icarus Interstellar are much too dedicated to do anything ...

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