LITTLE FERRY, NJ.., March 4, 1998 -- Until recently, the scientific Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence (SETI) required the kinds of facilities which only governments can afford. In an effort to encourage thousands of dedicated amateurs around the world to participate in their privatized search for life in space, the nonprofit SETI League has been working for three years on the design of low-cost instrumentation for scanning the skies. Today noted New Jersey electronics kit supplier Down East Microwave Inc. announced the availability of its 1420-144 line of radio astronomy converters and kits, based upon SETI League designs. The manufacturer will contribute a royalty to The SETI League for each unit sold.
"This converter design is the brainchild of SETI League executive director Dr. H. Paul Shuch," explains Down East Microwave president Steve Kostro. "For under $200 (or much less if you build up the kit yourself), the dedicated experimenter can now shift the prime Microwave radio astronomy frequencies down into the VHF, for reception by a low-cost ham radio receiver." The downconverter approach reduces the cost of an amateur SETI station or radio telescope by about $2000, and opens up this research hobby to a wide range of enthusiasts.
SETI scientists seek to determine through microwave and optical measurements whether humankind is alone in the universe. Since Congress terminated NASA's SETI funding in 1993, The SETI League and other scientific groups have been attempting to privatize the research. Experimenters interested in participating in the search for intelligent alien life, or citizens wishing to help support it, should email to 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 electromagnetic Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence.
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this page last updated 30 November 2002
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