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Planetary Society's Optical SETI Telescope Offers Online View of Night sky

Bruce Betts • October 30, 2007

The Planetary Society's Optical SETI Telescope was built solely to search for possible light signals from alien civilizations. Located at Oak Ridge Observatory in Harvard, Massachusetts, it is the first dedicated Optical SETI telescope in the world. Its 72-inch primary mirror also makes it larger than any optical telescope in the U.S. east of the Mississippi river.

Making Light Work

Louis D. Friedman • June 15, 2007

Professional Pilot Magazine asked me to contribute a prediction about the future of flight for the next century. Naturally, I wrote about solar sailing.

Millions of soundings yield clues to Mars' weather

Bruce Betts • April 03, 2007

Two months after the start of Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter's primary science phase, the Mars Climate Sounder instrument has already acquired more than four million soundings, building toward a vast data set on the three-dimensional structure of Mars' atmosphere over the full Martian year of the orbiter's nominal mission.

Updates from Past Recipients of the Shoemaker NEO Grants

Bruce Betts • March 01, 2007

Update as of March 4, 2007 Thanks to The Planetary Society Shoemaker Grant, the 1.06-meter KLENOT telescope optics was completed at the Klet Observatory. Regular observations of the KLENOT project started in March 2002 under the new IAU/MPC code 246, so we can now present results covering 5 years of this work.

Keeping an Ear to the Center of the Galaxy, Southern SETI Prepares for Great Leap Forward

Amir Alexander • February 26, 2007

Located in the southern part of the continent of South America, Southern SETI has a continuous view of densest star-fields in our galaxy. And, since 1990, it has been sponsored and supported by The Planetary Society.

With Observations in Full Swing, Team Prepares to Remove "Sunglasses" from Telescope

Amir Alexander • February 26, 2007

Winter time is observing time at the Oak Ridge Observatory in Massachusetts, when humidity is low and the sky is often clear. And so it has been for the Optical SETI telescope, which opened its doors in April 2006.

Update: Monitoring the Weather?

Louis D. Friedman • October 20, 2006

The bigger the dream, the harder it is to achieve it. Our dream at The Planetary Society is to fly the first solar sail mission -- and prove the technology that might someday take humanity to the stars.

Telescope Goes "Semi-Automatic"

Andrew Howard • October 20, 2006

Andrew Howard talks about the "semi-automated" nature of the observations from the Optical SETI telescope.

With Multi-Beam Receiver, [email protected] Takes Giant Step Forward

Amir Alexander • August 14, 2006

In seven intense days spent at the radio telescope Chief scientist Dan Werthimer and his colleagues completely overhauled the way SETI data is gathered at Arecibo, and ensured that [email protected] will henceforth enjoy the benefits of gathering data with the most advanced equipment anywhere in the world.

Updates from Past Recipients of the Shoemaker NEO Grants

Bruce Betts • July 18, 2006

Update as of July 13, 2006 Using the Shoemaker NEO Grant funds, Minor Planet Research has purchased a 1.7-terabyte data server for our Asteroid Discovery Station (ADS) education outreach program Through the generosity of Dr. Philip Christensen, this server is housed at the Mars Space Flight Facility (MSFF) at Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona.

Telescope shows its Amazing Capabilities

Bruce Betts • July 11, 2006

During a few observation sessions in late April, the new Optical SETI Telescope was already demonstrating its amazing capabilities. Over three nights, the telescope completed 17 hours of observation, under the direction of Paul Horowitz and his team of Harvard graduate students. During that time, the telescope observed 1% of the sky, looking for the briefest flashes of light coming from outer space.

Searching for E.T. and the Cure for Cancer:The Planetary Society Helps Trigger a Computing Revolution

Charlene Anderson and Amir Alexander • July 07, 2006

Planetary Society members truly have helped pioneer new techniques in the conduct of science. Our initial investment has returned amazing results that will continue to deliver benefits over years to come.

The Planetary Society Optical SETI Telescope Opens

Bruce Betts • April 28, 2006

On April 11, 2006, a new era dawned in the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI) with the dedication and beginning of operations of The Planetary Society Optical SETI Telescope in Harvard, Massachusetts. It is the first devoted optical SETI telescope in the world. The telescope was constructed by Paul Horowitz and his group at Harvard University using funding from Planetary Society members.

Update: Getting Started

Louis D. Friedman • December 02, 2005

The Planetary Society solar sail team is working to try again to fly the world’s first solar sail spacecraft.

The Planetary Society and the Search for Extrasolar Planets

Amir Alexander • October 27, 2005

Almost since it was founded in 1980, The Planetary Society has been there for the search for other worlds.

The End of Cosmos 1, the Beginning of the Next Chapter

Louis D. Friedman • September 30, 2005

Cosmos 1 was—and is—a great effort, and one we are proud The Planetary Society tried to do. Our independent grassroots organization built and launched a spacecraft whose technology promises to one day open up interstellar travel.

Updates from Past Recipients of the Shoemaker NEO Grants

Bruce Betts • August 17, 2005

Update as of July 28, 2005 Following last year's Potentially Hazardous Asteroid and a few other non-main-belt discoveries, I looked into what improvements I could make to more efficiently image the sky. The major advance involved the design of a 3-lens corrector comprising 2 stock lenses and a custom lens I made myself.

Volna Failure Review Board Reports on Loss of Cosmos 1

Louis D. Friedman • July 20, 2005

The Volna Failure Review Board convened by the Makeev Rocket Design Bureau, manufacturers of the Volna launch vehicle, has made its final report to the Russian space agency, Roskosmos, concerning the attempted June 21 launch of our Cosmos 1 spacecraft.

Analyzing Signals in Real Time

Amir Alexander • July 07, 2005

Candidate signals sent in by users around the world will be quickly analyzed and compared to existing signals.

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