Dr. Niladri Sarker is a Research Scientist working on projects jointly administered by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (NASA), Caltech, and the Lunar and Planetary Laboratory and the Department of Chemistry at the University of Arizona. His current research interests include simulating the chemical and organic environments in the outer solar system, mainly of Saturn's giant moon Titan, and are funded by NASA.
Niladri holds a Ph.D. in Chemistry. He obtained his postdoctoral experience from the University of Colorado at Boulder. He formerly served as The SETI League's volunteer Regional Coordinator for India.
Niladri is passionately philosophical about his eternal search for meaning, an odyssey he pursues in the visual arts. He is an artist in various media, and having shown his paintings in different art galleries around the world, seeks art "as a product of, and not alienated from" his "scientific pursuit for the absolute truth, provided, of course, our universe conceals such a truth". He is also a prolific writer and poet, and has contributed to various newspapers and magazines, including The Telegraph, where he is a frequent editorial writer on scientific and philosophical issues.
Additionally, Niladri is striving to be a movie-director, wanting his viewers to question the socio-philosophical aspect of our survival. He is very optimistic about launching a successful career beginning sometime within the next few years. "The first in a series of a completely different genre of moviemaking would question the very dimensionality of our mundane existence, both literally and metaphorically, try to find the limits of artistic freedom and philosophize on the future of Homo sapiens as a galactic species." Some of his other passtimes include playing and listening to music, reading, traveling, and trying to find meaning in the great puzzle of existence.
Niladri also enjoys lying out on a moonless night feeling the many starry eyes looking back at him, wondering how many intelligent civilizations and different levels of consciousness there might exist in them. SETI, to him, is a quest to find one's deepest roots, of trying to know the unknown -- an odd virtue that a few million years ago had enabled a certain species of upright bipeds with opposable thumbs and larger than usual cerebral cortices to venture beyond their familiar African grasslands. He'd love to bring an end to all forms of suffering, religions and barriers that hold us apart, and dreams to make that bridge that will take us to the depths of the Milky Way and beyond.
On a more philosophical note, he is frightened that one day he will die without knowing the true meaning of existence, and what part, if any, he played by being here in the first place.
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this page last updated 24 February 2007
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