Can there be in any of the billions of stars packed in endless number of galaxies in this vast infinite universe a form of existence that can act on its own with a sense so complex and similar to that of our species on Earth? Is there anyone accompanying us within the boundaries of an unknown, untold universe? This has been the quest of our existence for decades with our ability to finding the answer growing gradually along with our belief that we for sure have got some company. Once science the investigative tool to dig out the truth lost faith on its capabilities to accept and believe the existence of a supernatural power above the fortune of this planet. Things are rolling to change as change alone is the permanence.
The pillar of faith that we are the beloved creations of the Master of heaven is slowly losing ground, if not among everyone, at least among the scientists. The search for alien life in the unexplored areas among the celestial bodies is on with a replenished power and passion. Little is thought of the faith that has bound our generations together and the ruthless percussions such a finding is going to bring among the faith hearted race of ours.
As usual Greeks were the first to think about intelligent life forms other than the ones inhabiting the Earth. Later in the 16th century, when Copernicus came up with the idea that our Earth is not the centre of this universe, speculations started floating that the possibility of another civilization in a distant heavenly body is possible. As it didn’t go well the theological ideologies of the Church, such speculations were uttered in the vacuum.
When the science of space flourished, two Cornell physicists namely Philip Morrison and Guiseppe Cocconi published an article in Nature Magazine in 1959 about the types of messages or signals that can be transmitted into space to identify any extra-terrestrial intelligent life forms. As the universe is unimaginably vast and Hydrogen is the most abundant element out there, they concluded that the at the emission frequency of Hydrogen, which is 1420 MHz the intelligent life forms, if any would be able to receive our signals. When SETI, expanded as the Search for extraterrestrial intelligence was set up in 1984, this idea of the Hydrogen emission frequency has been its central idea to transmit signals to the outer space to further the search.
Eventually the world came to know about the aliens as green-bodied awkward looking humanoid forms with bulged eyes and slender trunks, which have the potential to wipe off our race and hence is a potential threat to our existence as defined by some of the highly imaginative narrators in the human history. Scientists have expressed concerns that such an incident of communicating with the aliens will be a tragedy for our survival, because of the possibility that the otherworldly beings can be technologically sophisticated and powerful than we are.
Ellen Stofan, NASA’s chief scientist believes that we are only one or two decades away from finding alien life. But to the contrary of the popular belief, she is not expecting some green giants to be found, but only tiny microbes. There have been studies published that complex organic molecules that are prototypes to forming life have been spotted in some newly formed star systems.
Thus, there is confidence yet some confusion and chaos too among the science explorers. However, physicist Stephen Hawking and Russian philanthropist has announced a $100 million to rejuvenate the search of alien life by SETI, whose budget was otherwise set to be hampered. Thus, the Breakthrough Listen will be a project to look for traces of life forms in the 100 million nearest stars and 100 nearest galaxies, through the most powerful telescopes including the Green Bank Telescope, a fully steerable radio telescope.
Adding to the glory is the discovery of a new planet 1400 light-years away analogous to Earth known as Kepler 452b, where there are possibilities of life evolving, if conditions suit. Thus, there have been much happening in our understanding of space and there is more to happen.