TRENTON, NJ.., 17 April 2005 -- The SETI League, Inc., grassroots leader in the privatized Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence, has awarded its highest technical honor to a prominent California radio amateur. Retired engineer James Brown of Del Mar, CA, also known by his amateur radio callsign W6KYP, today received the coveted Giordano Bruno Memorial Award, honoring his significant technical contributions to amateur SETI science.
Brown was one of the first amateurs in the world to build a radio telescope dedicated specifically to the search for intelligent life in space. Begun in 1978 (sixteen years before the formation of the nonprofit SETI League), Brown's SETI station was powered by Zeke, a computer he built himself before personal computers became commercially available. Brown is now an active participant in The SETI League's Project Argus all-sky survey, and has written extensive astronomical, coordination, and signal analysis software, which he freely shares with other SETI League members worldwide through his seti.net website. When notified of the award via telepohone this morning by Awards Commitee chairman David Ocame, Brown was in the middle of running tests of his Remote SETI Client, which will allow SETI League members around the world to operate participating radio telescopes remotely via the Internet.
The Bruno is awarded annually for significant contributions to the art and science of SETI. It is dedicated to the memory of Giordano Bruno, the Italian monk burned at the stake in 1600 for postulating the multiplicity of inhabited worlds. This award was first suggested by sociologist Donald Tarter, at a SETI dinner held at the American Association for the Advancement of Science meetings in Atlanta on Feb. 17, 1995 (coincidentally the 395th anniversary of Bruno's death). Past recipients include physicist Dr. D. Kent Cullers, WA6TWX; software volunteer Daniel Boyd Fox, KF9ET; English amateur radio astronomers Trevor Unsworth, G0ECP, and Ken Chattenton, G4KIR; Australian coordinator Noel Cedric Welstead, VK4AYW; photonics engineer Dr. Stuart Kingsley, German amateur radio astronomer Peter Wright; DJ0BI; Italian space scientist Dr. Claudio Maccone; SETI pioneers Dr. Philip (W8FIS) and Phylis Morrison; and Italian radio astronomer Dr. Stelio Montebugnoli.
Largely using radio telescopes and optical telescopes, SETI scientists seek to determine whether humankind is alone in the universe. Since Congress terminated NASA's SETI funding in 1993, The SETI League and other scientific groups have privatized the research. Amateur and professional scientists interested in participating in the search for intelligent alien life, and citizens wishing to help support it, should email join_at_setileague_dot_org, check the SETI League Web site at http://www.setileague.org/, send a fax to +1 (201) 641-1771, or contact The SETI League, Inc. membership hotline at +1 (800) TAU-SETI. Be sure to provide us with a postal address to which we will mail further information. The SETI League, Inc. is a membership-supported, non-profit [501(c)(3)], educational and scientific corporation dedicated to the scientific Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence.
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this page last updated 17 April 2005
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