Participant Support for the First Penn State SETI Symposium; July, 2020; University Park, PA

Project: Research project

Project Details


The discovery of thousands of exoplanets has led to credible estimates of the number of potentially habitable planets in our galaxy. Astronomers estimate that there are up to forty billion of these worlds. Follow-up observations have suggested the presence of water vapor in the atmospheres of some exoplanets, lending new credence to the idea that there might be life elsewhere in our galaxy, and new urgency for the search for life. Pennsylvania State University will host the first Penn State SETI Symposium (PSETI2020), a gathering of scientists to discuss plans and new approaches in this rapidly evolving field. The aim of the conference is to put SETI research on firmer footing by developing plans for rigorous technosignatures searches. The workshop will focus on new efforts involving ground-based and space-based telescopes in a variety of wavebands, emphasizing data-driven results and the training of new researchers.

Pennsylvania State University, University Park, will host the first Penn State SETI Symposium (PSETI2020). PSETI2020 is to be the first in an annual series of conferences on SETI research. One of the principal aims of the conference series will be the training of new and early-career researchers. The conference organizers seek to encourage participation in PSETI2020 by early-career researchers by offering NSF-sponsored funding for travel and conference registration. The conference will last four days, and will include sessions devoted to recent results, as well as reviews and short courses in the current status of the field. There will also be workshops where early-career researchers can learn about new data sets and analysis tools, and where they can work intensively with experts in the field.

This award reflects NSF's statutory mission and has been deemed worthy of support through evaluation using the Foundation's intellectual merit and broader impacts review criteria.

Effective start/end date1/15/2012/31/22


  • National Science Foundation: $49,404.00


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