[Baltimore] Scientists attending a week long symposium at the Space Science Telescope Institute are hopeful that the discovery of earth sized
extrasolar planets could occur in the near future. The first extrasolar planet was discovered orbiting 51 pegasi 10 years ago. Since 1995 153 other
extrasolar planets have been discovered, all of these are believed to be planets similar to Jupiter in size. Some of these discoveries are the result
of studying the apparent motion or wobble of stars and others resulting from apparent changes in stars' intensities or magnitude. Some of the
attendees indicate that new methods and technologies are within reach that will uncover more earthlike extrasolar planets in the near term.
"Within a few years, we may be able to detect things like our own solar system," said Mario Livio, an astrophysicist at the Space Telescope Science
Institute. That could help answer what he termed the most intriguing question in science today: is there intelligent life anywhere besides Earth?
"The capability of seeing, detecting, planets the size of the Earth is only now just coming into our grasp," said Jaymie Matthews, an astronomer at
the University of British Columbia.
"I think we can look forward reasonably in the next decade to finding out are there Earth-size planets in Earth-like orbits going around every star,"
said Tim Brown of the National Center for Atmospheric Research. "We're going to have to wait a while to find out whether they have atmospheres."
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Tim Brown's rather optimistic view that earth like planets in earth like orbits would be more common than previously considered in mainstream science
makes "Fermi's Paradox" even more paradoxical. "Fermi's Paradox" is the name given to a discussion between Enrico Fermi and his associates during the
1940's and 1950's in which Fermi hypothisizes that extraterrestrial civilization should be abundant, given the huge numbers of stars in our galaxy
David Leonard's article "Does science make room for aliens?", published February 14th 2005, discusses issues such as advancements in quantum physics,
recent astronomical discoveries, and other science facts and how they increase the probability of contact with extraterrestrial civilizations. Leonard
doesn't mention the more controversial theories put forth by Tom Bearden, Myron Evans and others that would shatter the paradigms of current
mainstream science, giving way to further developments in our understanding of the cosmos and our place in it.
The gradual dissolution of these paradigms is evident by the publication of papers in the scientific literature. "Inflation Theory Implications for
Extraterrestrial Visitation" by Deardorff, Haich, Macabee and Puthoff asserts that "It has recently been argued that anthropic reasoning applied to
inflation theory reinforces the prediction that we should be part of a large galaxy sized civilization, thus strengthening Fermi's paradox concerning
"where are they?""
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