I'm currently researching a paper for my intro astrophysics class, and am looking for information. My topic is the mechanics of searching for extraterrestrial life, and I figure the people on this board know just about everything we currently know on this topic. [img]/phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif[/img]
Right now, I've tentatively split my search into 3 groups:
The first being searching for signals from E.T., (ie, SETI, seti@home, and those people sitting on their porches with binoculars). This would include something about radio telescope operation, I suppose.
The second is looking for places where life is likely (ie, Europa, Mars, extrasolar planets in habitable zones, non-irradiating stars, etc) which would include looking for spectral shifts, and the computations on recovering planet-induced wobbling.
The third is looking for E.T. themselves (trying to directly image planets), about which I don't have much information besides some descriptions of huge solar orbiting
interferometers which are unlikely to be created anytime soon. (I would still like to talk about them though).
I can't talk much about biology, as this _is_ an astrophysics class, but I can work it in in places, such as why we're listening between the frequency ranges of H and OH...
In addition, a slightly annoying thing is that even with my interest in this subject, no matter what niftyness I describe to my prof, she's likely already heard about it. So if anyone knows about cutting edge stuff in this field and is willing to give me some pointers, that would make my day.
So please excuse my long-windedness, and thanks in advance!