Sunday, September 13, 2009

Celestial Rosetta stone and modifying the Drake Equation

Welcome! "Alien Life" tracks the latest discoveries and thoughts in the various elements of the famous Drake Equation. Here's today's news:
g Stars - ESA's XMM-Newton orbiting X-ray telescope has uncovered a celestial Rosetta stone: the first close-up of a white dwarf star, circling a companion star, that could explode into a particular kind of supernova in a few million years. These supernovae are used as beacons to measure cosmic distances and ultimately understand the expansion of our universe. See article.
g Intelligence - Robots that can make their own decisions have so far been confined to science fiction movies, but a child-sized figure with big eyes and a white face is trying hard to turn fiction into reality. See article.
g Message - Should we modify the Drake Equation to account for civilizations which actually engage in deliberate interstellar transmission? See article.
g Cosmicus - NASA has taken a major step toward building the next crew exploration vehicle by completing the Orion Project's preliminary design review, or PDR. Orion is being designed to carry astronauts to the International Space Station and other destinations. See article.
g Aftermath - Quote of the Day: “… discovering life on another planet might be one of the most fantastic things for humans.” — J. Craig Venter

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