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Avi Loeb has a few million dollars to use to search for extraterrestrials in the sky and space

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This still shows the unidentified object tracked by a Navy pilot in 2015 in the “Gimbal” video.

Screenshot by Amanda Kooser / CNET

Harvard’s most controversial astronomer is leading a unused initiative, dubbed Project Galileo, to check Earth’s skies and the rest of the solar system for signs of extraterrestrial intelligence.

Avi Loeb, a lengthy-time professor of astronomy who was famous for his belief in it Interstellar object ‘Oumuamua Likely a space probe, it announced details of its plan via a virtual press conference on Monday.

Officially, the initiative is described as a “transparent scientific project to advance a systematic experimental search for substantiated evidence from potential archaeological astronomical artifacts or active technical equipment made by purportedly existing or extinct extraterrestrial technological civilizations (ETCs).”

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Translation: The plan is to use a variety of telescopes to search for spaceships, probes, or other debris left by Earth-born intelligent beings.

“What we see in our skies is not something that politicians or the military should explain because they are not trained as scientists,” Loeb told reporters. “It’s up to the scientific community to find out… based on the non-governmental data we will collect as scientists.”

The first phase of the project involves creating a network of dozens of relatively little telescopes around the world that will attempt to arrest unused images of unidentified atmospheric phenomena (UAP, the preferred and more comprehensive acronym designed to replace “unidentified flying objects”).

very expected A report issued by the Director of National Intelligence of the United States He confirmed in June the existence of a number of UAPs, for which the military and intelligence community cannot donate positive explanations.

“The goal of Project Galileo is to bring the search for extraterrestrial technological signatures from episodic or anecdotal observations and legends into the mainstream of systematic, transparent and validated scientific research,” it said in a statement.

New eyes on the sky

To do this, the plan is to focus solely on collecting unused data and observations rather than analyzing former UAP scenes like those included in the recent DNI report. This unused data will then be analyzed by algorithms and artificial intelligence to try to divide the real UAP from birds, balloons, drones, satellites and other known explanations.

Frank Laukyan, the project’s co-founder, a visiting biochemical researcher at Harvard University and CEO of scientific instrument maker Brooker, noted that Project Galileo would not consider any alternative physics-based explanations for the unused UAP observations.

“We will stick scientifically to known physics, but we will preserve the data,” Laukyan said.

Loeb has become a polarizing figure in the astronomy community, especially since the release of his book summarizing his hypothesis of Oumuamua earlier this year, with a number of scientists accusing him of jumping to severe conclusions without proper evidence.

“Most scientists do not rule out the conceivable existence of these types of civilizations (the universe is vast!),” Justin Quart, Ph.D. A candidate studying the geology of Mars, tweeted Monday. “But most don’t jump on extraordinary claims without extraordinary evidence, which Loeb loves to do.

Loeb rejects the premise that extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence but still hopes to collect some with his unused project. In fact, Galileo’s nod in the project’s name is a bit of applauding his critics by making a comparison with the famous 16th century astronomer who was imprisoned for his then-heretical suggestion that the Earth revolves around the sun and not the other way around. .

Looking further, too

In addition to trying to detect UAP in the sky, the project also plans to use next-generation telescopes such as the Vera C. Observatory to check us out in a low-level manner. The project description even leaves begin the possibility of designing its own purpose-built space observatory:

“We will conceptualize and design, perhaps in collaboration with space agencies or interested space projects, a launch-ready space mission to image unusual interstellar objects such as Oumuamua by intercepting their paths as they approach the Sun or by using ground-surveying telescopes to detect interstellar meteors.”

All this is, of course, an expensive proposition. Loeb told reporters he had received donations to his Harvard research fund totaling more than $1.75 million in the former two weeks “without restrictions.”

He says the hope is to increase this level of funding by at fewest tenfold “to do a more rigorous study”.

As for when we can see unused UAP images from Project Galileo, Loeb said the team is currently selecting its telescopes and hopes to provide “interesting results next year.”

“It starts now,” he said.

Continued CNET . Space Calendar 2021 To preserve up with the latest space news this year. You can even add it to your Google Calendar.


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